▲ Professor Min lecturing. Photographed by Nam Hye Bin
On May 23, a lecture, “Mourning: Life ‘After’ Death” was held in room 101 of the political science and economics college building. Professor Min Seung Kee, (Department of English Language and Literature, Kyung Hee University) elaborated on Jacques Derrida’s philosophy.
His lecture focused on the basic meaning of ‘mourning’ and its specific features. He stated that one of Derrida’s saying, “Welt ist fort, ich muss dich tragen. (The world is gone, and I have to carry you.)” clearly shows what ‘mourning’ is. He explained that mourning “is the process of carrying ‘otherness’ into your own space” which creates a “self-different feature of an existence.”
Elaborating on the same issue, he asserted that mourning always exists as a ‘half-mourning,’ ‘melancholia’ because if you mourn excessively—possess ‘otherness’ exclusively—it will kill the ‘otherness’ that has been carried inside you. This will result in an ‘introjection,’ rather than a ‘melancholic incorporation.’ He emphasized that only through melancholic incorporation, the feature of self-difference would remain.
He further developed the discussion by relating philosophy of melancholy with relationships and illustrated how it could be applied to friendship and understanding of the world. Then he finished his lecture by mentioning two independent attitudes we should have regarding this application.