Vol. 1 No. 1 (2023)
Thematic Section

Hospitality – Who is the guest? Possible interpretations of the reversal or mixing of places on the two sides of the boundary based on Derrida’s lectures on Hospitality

Mónika Míra Pigler
János Brenner College of Theology
Pázmány Papers vol. 1. nr. 1.

Published 12/18/2023 — Updated on 06/13/2024


  • hospitality,
  • boundary,
  • ontological alienation,
  • Holy Guest,
  • perichoresis


In this article I explore Derrida’s concept of the host-boundary-customer at the three Kantian levels (between states, communities and persons). The relational difference and essential unity of the persons of the Trinity illuminate the need to distinguish the “other” and the “self” even when it comes to the human person created in the image of God and living in community, in order to create a non-merging unity. God, entering the created world comes as a ‘holy guest’, while we realise that even we ourselves belong to the divine world and are in fact only guests in this world, that is to say, our essence is one of “ontological strangeness.”