the invisible Theatre of hospitality


by Lori Adragna e Valeria Valenza


The Invisible Theatre of hospitality


The contemporary situations of border crossings due to the so called ‘globalization’, to phisiological emigrations, to refugees movements, if not to actual ethnical deportations, lead us to think about the state of fact of western democracies and the hospitality policies. The subsequent crisis of identity, believes, economies, life stiles…require us to rethink the foundations of our cohabitation.

Therefore, paraphrasing the decostructionist strategy of the philosopher Jacques Derrida, we can reshape the contours of a coexistence geography, in order to rediscuss that special relationship that connect us to the world, intended not as I construction, but on the contrary, as something that meet the man, surprising him with its alterity.

Opening to hospitality in order to establish the meeting with the world, is the ethic culture itself and not any other ethic, because it concern the ethos, that is ‘home, being oneself in one’s own home, the way of being there, of relating to the others’*.

The other is constantly contaminating us and makes indistinct the borders and the barriers that the unconscious build in order to protect our identity. Only by deconstructing one’s I, accepting to become hostage in the magic moment of encounter, the genesis of the subject, of the surviving, of the tradition is realized. In fact, if the guest (paradoxically the latin word hostis unites in the linguistic root who is the guest and who is the enemy) enters a unknown world which doesn’t belong to him, the one who hosts must, for the universal law of hospitality, welcoming the other and making him feel as in his own house. This elaboration, defined by the philosopher as the invisible theatre of hospitality, presents some analogies with the artistic execution: by it it’s possible to open passages making see what is coming after the complection of our era.

By continuously asking oneself things on oneself, on one’s alterity and on one’s future, it’s the foundation of "democracy to come" is played out, 
that the philosopher speaks about. Vision of a politics perhaps ‘impossible’, but bearer of hope, which can prefigure the ‘living together’ of being of any kind, species, gendre, where they aren’t still defined by their condition of ‘juridical’ subjects.
This does not imply a process of depoliticization, but requires another and a different implementation of the concepts of "politics" and "world”. **

*   Jacques Derrida, Cosmopolites de tous les pays, encore un effort !, Editions Galilée  Paris 1994

** Giovanna Borradori, Philosophy in a Time of Terror, Dialogues with Jürgen Habermas and Jacques Derrida, Chicago University Press, 2003




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