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Abstract

Stay! That is to say, either stay with your decision or stay your hand. Demeure: either remain or delay. Morari or moriri: either life or death. The alternation is also a hyphenation, a connection-disconnection, as with that of Judaeo-Christianity and the ethicoreligious. How are these hyphenations construed in Kierkegaard's divergence from Kant and Hegel and in the responses of Derrida and Levinas to Johannes de silentio's story of what happened and did not happen on Mount Moriah? Perfect duties and imperfect duties fall under the responsibility of absolute duty. If the ethical is externally related to natural life, the life that is internal to the ethical is due to another externality, that of responsibility to the absolute other - or God, if you like. Another alternation. Another hyphenation? Or a dash? And would it be a dash that separates justice from love? And is love ever separate from self-love or from narcissisim? What sort of narcissism is exemplifed in Kierkegaard's search for salvation? Meanwhile Abraham waits, and with him or against him but without demur, so do Isaac (or is it Ishmael?), the ram, and a host of hostages, guests, and asylum-seekers, one by one.

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