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Kierkegaard, Derrida, neighbor, love, politics, philosophy of religion


This article meditates on the Christian command to love the neighbor as yourself by focusing on how both Jacques Derrida and Søren Kierkegaard have read this command. I argue that Derrida, failing in his faithfulness to Kierkegaard, makes a mistake when he includes this command in the Greek model of the politics of friendship in his Politics of Friendship. Such a mistake is illumined by Kierkegaard’s understanding of the neighbor in this command from Works of Love because this understanding helps to develop Derrida’s vision of a democracy and politics that resists the hegemony of the masculine and remains open to the event of a non-hierarchical relation to the other.


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This is the author accepted version of the published article:

Harris B. Bechtol (2019) Oh my neighbors, there is no neighbor, International Journal of Philosophy and Theology, 80:4-5, 326-343, DOI: 10.1080/21692327.2018.1488149

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