In anthropology, as well as in the other disciplines that constitute social science,
it becomes increasingly clear that the notions of society and of the social,
such as developed by the inventors of sociology, are gradually marginalized or,
if I can use a term drawn from psychology, repressed. Consequently, the space
that formerly constituted a fertile object of research has been fragmented. This
situation is worrying, especially for the survival of an independent social analysis
and critique. If the notion of sociality is no longer acceptable, then as Derrida
puts it: “Each time, no matter how faithful one wants to be, one betrays the
singularity of the other one addressed” (2004: 12).1 Then, finally, as the other
has become to a large extend unreachable, each time one considers a social
question, the next minute, it falls into pieces and returns to dust like an “uneducable
ghost who has never learned to live” (ibid.).
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