Guest editor's introduction



Publication Details

Buchanan, I. M. 1996, 'Guest editor's introduction', Social Semiotics, vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 1-6.


Speaking of his deeply felt need to write a book about his great friend Michel Foucault, Gilles Deleuze said when 'someone that you like and admire dies, you sometimes need to draw their picture. Not to glorify them, still less to defend them, not to remember, but rather to produce a final likeness you can find only in death, that makes you realise "that's who they were"' (1995:102). I am not sure we have yet reached the stage of being able to produce 'a final likeness', but I do think we're ready to begin sketching it, tentatively of course. In that spirit, what this collection shows is that the central concern of Michel de Certeau's work is the problem of what can be said, which raises both practical and ethical questions. To put it another way, what de Certeau shows is that what can be said clashes with what must be said.

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