A major comparative study of two giants of contemporary thought, this text reads Derrida's deconstruction against Lacan's psychoanalytic thought and argues that Lacan presents a form of deconstruction that is distinct from Derrida's. This approach opens up a critical engagement with Derridean deconstruction, demonstrating that attention to the order of the imaginary, along with the genesis of the human being and his language, should modify the relation between language and the real& mdash;deconstruction's central concern. Michael Lewis argues that this is psychoanalysis's contribution to philosophy& mdash;a way of relating transcendental thought to the empirical sciences, which Lacan draws upon in his theory of the genesis of the human being and language. Lewis argues that Derrida's thought represents the most advanced formulation of transcendental philosophy, and as a result, if the Lacanian criticism can be applied to his work, then it may be applied to all transcendental thought.
This book engages with the entire development of Lacan's thought in its attempt to demonstrate that the philosopher presents an alternative to Derrida's understanding of the nature of "archi-writing." It represents a systematic development of Slavoj Zizek's presentation of a Lacanian alternative to Derridean deconstruction and will be of interest to all readers in continental thought, transcendental philosophy, psychoanalytic theory, and the relations between philosophy, the natural, and human sciences.