What is Deconstruction?

In order to know the meaning of the term deconstruction, it is necessary, in the first place, to discover its etymological origin. In this case, we can state that it is a word that derives from deconstruct, which is a verb of Latin origin that is the result of the following parts:

-The prefix “de-”, which can be translated as “from top to bottom”.

-The particle “con-”, which means “globally”.

-The verb “struere”, which is synonymous with “join”.

Deconstruction consists of dismantling conceptual structures.

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Deconstruction concept

The idea of ​​deconstruction is used in the field of philosophy and literary theory with reference to the act and result of deconstructing. This verb, which comes from the French word déconstruire, refers to dismantling, through an intellectual analysis, a certain conceptual structure.

Deconstruction is carried out by revealing the ambiguities, flaws, weaknesses and contradictions of a theory or discourse. The deconstructed, in this framework, is dismantled or undone.

By dismantling the structure of the language a text uses, its various meanings are exposed. Deconstruction shows, in this framework, that there are multiple possible readings.

Deconstruction appears in gastronomy through molecular cuisine.

The contribution of diverse thinkers

Proposed by Jacques Derrida (1930-2004) based on the ideas of thinkers such as Martin Heidegger (1889-1976), the deconstruction strategy is based on an analysis of the structures that make up discourse. Beyond philosophy, the notion is often used in plain language to mention the search for falsehoods or fallacies that a discourse hides.

It can be said that deconstruction is responsible for revising concepts with the intention of discovering the historical and cultural process that underlies them. In this way it can be shown that the apparent clarity of a text is usually not such.

The complexity of the notion of deconstruction

It is important to keep in mind that a deep understanding of the scope of deconstruction requires advanced knowledge of philosophy.

There are numerous essays where the term is developed in all its complexity. There are even authors who debate with Derrida and make their contributions to the notion.

The term in gastronomy

In the same way, we cannot ignore the fact that this term is increasingly used within the field of cooking. Thus, we speak of deconstruction cuisine or deconstructed recipes. In this case, it is one of the great culinary revolutions of recent decades that consists of presenting traditional recipes and dishes with a totally different and unrecognizable appearance.

Basically, this is how the dishes are presented with elements as varied and innovative as foams, new textures, gelifications…

The famous Spanish chef Ferrá Adriá has been the pioneer in this proposal, which he has defined as a process that consists of “using and respecting already known harmonies, transforming the textures of the ingredients as well as their shape and temperature while maintaining each ingredient”.

A clear example of a deconstruction recipe is the three-textured glass created by chef Marc Singla, which can apparently be mistaken for a dessert or a cocktail. However, under that appearance is the flavor of the traditional potato omelette.