Deconstruction in 5 Minutes

A quick and easy guide to the world’s most hated philosophy

Dustin T. Cox
5 min readAug 6, 2022
Photo by Adrian N on Unsplash

Despite its broad influence and popularity, “deconstruction” is a dirty word in most university philosophy departments in the English speaking world.

Renowned British philosopher and political conservative Roger Scruton, for example, regards deconstruction with unvarnished disdain:

“Deconstruction deconstructs itself, and disappears up its own behind, leaving only a disembodied smile and a faint smell of sulfur.”

Likewise, American linguist and leftist rabble rouser Noam Chomsky smells something foul in deconstruction.

By way of explanation, Chomsky claims that while physicists (and mathematicians, etc.) can always explain their most difficult theories in terms comprehensible to him, deconstructionists can never make him understand.

For that reason, Chomsky concludes that in the case of deconstruction, either

“some new advance in intellectual life has been made, perhaps some sudden genetic mutation, which has created a form of “theory” that is beyond quantum theory, topology, etc., in depth and profundity; or… I won’t spell it out.”

So, in a rare display of unity, philosophical conservatives and liberals alike see…

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Dustin T. Cox

Owner/Editor of The Grammar Messiah. Personal Lord and Savior