The stranger in the polis
Hospitality in Greek myth
By the gates of Thebes the stranger has no name. For to be given a name, or to give oneself a name, is to identify oneself as someone, and therefore as not a stranger anymore. Naming the stranger amounts to depriving him of his strangeness and appropriating him to the familiar, to ourselves. A stranger who can be named by this or that name is no longer strange. He is already within. Even before he enters my city or my home, he has entered my language: as Levinas says, “languageishospitality.”
Manoussakis, J.P. (2011)., The stranger in the polis: Hospitality in Greek myth, in R. Kearney & K. Semonovitch (eds.), Phenomenologies of the stranger, New York, Fordham University Press, pp. 274-284.
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