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Phenomenologies of the StrangerBetween Hostility and Hospitality$
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Richard Kearney and Kascha Semonovitch

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780823234615

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823234615.001.0001

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Putting Hospitality in Its Place

Putting Hospitality in Its Place

(p.49) 2 Putting Hospitality in Its Place
Phenomenologies of the Stranger



Fordham University Press

This chapter shows that hospitality is a virtue of place and always happens in a place. Our experiences of place — implacement and displacement — are precisely those that mark the preconditions for hosting the other. Informed by Aristotelian virtue ethics, environmental studies and contemporary hermeneutics, this chapter illuminates place as fundamental to being. It offers an ontology and phenomenology of space in which displacement and hospitality feature as disclosive events. Replying to Jacques Derrida's contention that hospitality is always conditioned or else impossible, it suggests that different people might reply to the guest or stranger differently, according to their character and situation. Place ties a person to a “plot” on the earth but also to the “plots,” stories or histories associated with a particular cultural and linguistic narrative.

Keywords:   Jacques Derrida, hospitality, place, virtue ethics, implacement, displacement, space, phenomenology, plots, stranger

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