Deconstructing deconstruction

xkcd has yet again performed a valuable public service, this time by highlighting just how atrocious is the Wikipedia entry for “Deconstruction”.

However, if you dig into the previous versions of that article, you find the following animated GIF which (together with its caption) provides one of the most helpful summaries of “deconstruction” I’ve come across. However, some Wikipedia editor disagreed, and the image has since been removed as a so-called “joke”. The animation and caption are set out below so you can decide for yourselves.

In the interests of preserving people’s bandwidth and sanity, the animation (all 2 MB of it) will only load if you click the static image.

Click to see animation of deconstruction of New Haven Coliseum

Deconstruction is the process of reducing things to their component entities, and examining their assumptions. Here, the New Haven Coliseum sports arena is deconstructed into its component entities, which a Judeo-Christian might find to be topologically homeomorphic to ash and dust particles, illustrating the Judeo-Christian concept of ashes to ashes, dust to dust. However, a Buddhist might see the coliseum reincarnating into an ethereal cloud, and a Zen Buddhist might ask: What is the sound of one building reincarnating?. An advocate of deconstruction might argue that we privilege our chosen worldview in what we see, while a physicist might argue the objective reality to be : First there was a building. Then it blew up.

So now you know. šŸ˜‰

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