Shahar blogs (naturally in a post one ought to read a few times in its entirety):
Levinas equates the Saying (to be opposed to the Said) with the immanence of the body, with the diachrony of ageing and pain, and with the sensibility of flesh. In contrast to structuralism, which synchronizes the relations between signs in an atemporal horizontal totality, Levinas posits the primordial relation with the other. In this instance, signs are given as gifts between interlocutors before they are fixed into impersonal structures. Time de-phases the identical.
My recent use of somebody's idea of the "unsaid" is similar to the Saying in that it points to the performance of the said, its illocutionary residue; its particular bias is textualist as well as dialectical. Levinas' formulation holds more promise.
Time de-phases the identical. Dephasis problematizes temporality, as if temporality could persist while Time (time's identity) passed underground, even beneath phenomenality, phasis, delivery. A model for this temporality is the gift economy, if only because it's already been described. Now, do we say Time, its reality bracketed out for the sake of exploring the problem of dephasis, neither phases in nor phases out the identical, its presupposition it would seem, but precisely deprives it of phase? Interlocution as the relation that absolves of the relation? We can use totality to undo totality at the "same time" we step outside it? Is this approach suggested by an inherited style of reflection, or perhaps guided by an eidos of reflection? Has structuralism justly been given a due?
I'm sure Kevin would have something to say about this dephasing of the identical, as evidenced by his commentary here. "The music of engagement is always richer than this." (I don't mean to deflect. Just curious.)