However, this post is motivated by a totally unrelated subject. I happened to stumble, today, upon a remark by American philosopher John Searle about Derrida's deconstructionism. Speaking of Derrida's approach, he objected to: "the low level of philosophical argumentation, the deliberate obscurantism of the prose, the wildly exaggerated claims, and the constant striving to give the appearance of profundity by making claims that seem paradoxical, but under analysis often turn out to be silly or trivial." (An Exchange on Deconstructionism, 1984)
I quote this thought here because it seems to describe not only the self-serving pseudo-sofistacated pretentiousness that permeates every French writing on philosophy or art I have ever encountered, but also because it seems to be a verbatim description of pretty much every French film I have watched, taken co-productions appart!
Now, don't get me wrong - this is not a sample of the new American literary genre "beat the French". Similar observations can be posted about certain genres and subgenres of Spanish, German or Russian art or academic writing (and probably I should do so), the point is that Searle's observation (regardless of how fairly it applies to Derrida's work) goes to the heart of everything that is vain and superficial in thinking. A real artist, as well as a true thinker, should never be dazzled by the fireworks of word games, no matter how tempting. At the core and at the end of every question, quest or search, there is the human being, and we are privy to humanity not through reflection and analysis, but through direct experience. Whenever we force the translation of this direct experience into the analytical terms of spoken, or written, language, we end up losing in the trade.