2019-02Thematic Section
Disrupting Symmetry: Jean-Luc Nancy and Luce Irigaray on Myth and the Violence of Representation


Through myths that pattern and repeat we figure the world to ourselves. The desire to be done with myth, to surpass mythic thinking in favor of a “more” rational way of thinking, is but one way of perpetrating violence in the guise of similitude. The rejection of muthos by logos is itself a form of violence, with significant ramifications. The following analysis will explore the work of Luce Irigaray’s Speculum of the Other Woman, and Jean-Luc Nancy’s Inoperative Community, focusing on the ways in which myth becomes mythology, and the inescapable question of violence that attends this operation. This paper, although touching upon the matter, is not an attempt to answer the larger question of what myth is. The scope of this analysis is constrained to a discussion of both Nancy and Irigaray’s understanding of myth as foundational, as well as interrogating the nature of the violence of representation. I will briefly touch upon the long and elaborate conversation surrounding the muthoslogos divide.


symmetry, Jean-Luc Nancy, Luce Irigaray, myth, disruption, violence

How to cite:

Biro, Sasha L. “Disrupting Symmetry: Jean-Luc Nancy and Luce Irigaray on Myth and the Violence of Representation.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 3, no. 2(8) (2019): 62–74. https://doi.org/10.14394/eidos.jpc.2019.0018.


Sasha L. Biro
Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Marist College
3399 North Road, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601, USA


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