Chair: Jacqueline Rose
Jacques Derrida and Hélène Cixous are two of the world's most celebrated figures in the fields of philosophy and literature. Both occupy crucial positions in European thought, and share a common experience of a childhood in Algeria, although they only met in Paris in 1962.
Close friends ever since, their writing has often drawn parallels to each other's work. In this unique session, in front of an audience of 900, they discussed the shared cultural and religious heritage of their formative years, not Algerian, rejected by France, their Jewishness concealed or acculturated and the impact it had on them.
Hélène Cixous is Director of the Centre d'Études Féminines at Paris 8 and house playwright at Ariane Mnouchkine's Théâtre du Soleil. Her publications include The Newly Born Woman (1986), Stigmata (1998) and Reveries of the Wild Woman (2002). She collaborated with Derrida on Veils (2001).
Jacques Derrida is Director of Studies at the École des Hautes Études en Science Sociales in Paris. His most recent publications include Monolingualism of the Other (1998), The Politics of Friendship (1997), On Cosmopolitanism and Forgiveness (2001), Without Alibi (2002) and Philosophy in a Time of Terror (2003). His latest work on Cixous is H.C., pour la vie, c'est à dire (2002).
Jacqueline Rose is Professor of English at Queen Mary, University of London. Her books include On Not Being Able to Sleep: Psychoanalysis and the Modern World (2003).
In association with the I.C.A. and the Institut Français