previous | | 2.9.6 (181) | contents

Genders296.jpg


 Lest our hyperbole overstep our hounds, Lacan cautions that “the Actaeon who is dismembered here is not Freud, but every analyst in proportion to the passion that inflamed him and made him [per Bruno,] ‘the prey of the dogs of his own thoughts.’ To gauge the extent of this rending, we must [despite protests,] bring them back to the beginning of the hunt, with the words that truth gave us as a viaticum—‘I speak’—adding, ‘there is no speech without language’.” In other words, there is no subject without a signifier. As Žižek notes (of Tristan und Isolde), the “beautiful woman as the image of death is a standard feature of male phantasmic space.” Conversely, lest we miss The (Freudian) Thing’s ambivalence, Freud’s reckoning that “maternity is proved by the evidence of the senses while paternity is an hypothesis” underwrites his surmise that “turning from the mother to the father points to a victory of intellectuality over sensuality” only insofar as he is (un­-)dead—that is, as He is Theo­-Logized in absentia. From this, as Lacan deduces, “the attribution of procreation to the father can only be the effect of a pure signifier ... what religion has taught us to invoke as the Name­-of­-the­-Father.” 

index | 2.9.7 (182) | | next

Genders297.jpg


 The analyst deploys this ambiguity, “playing dead” with the analysand “by his [symbolic] silence where he is the [Big] Other, or by canceling out his own [imaginary] resistance where he is the [small] other.” How to recap this duplicitous caput­ mortuum? We untie its ops in fig.77 and retrace its cuts in fig.78. Over time, Lacan re­-tied his axes to variously displaced effects; in Kant avec Sade (1963), $–a strikes “the structure of fantasy” in the barred­ subject’s oscillatory desire for the object­-cause of desire. That “jouissance is located on the side of the Thing” causes the “quartering of the subject” by which “identifications are determined by desire there without satisfying the drive.” This chiastic tour, by which Lacan double­-binds Freud’s drives (and Bruno, Ficino’s Eros), is indeed a trick knot, unbound at peril—at minimum—of the subject’s speech. To dis­-cover “Diana at her Bath” as Klossowski puts it, “Actaeon need not be in one place or another, but must step out of his own mind; what he then sees takes shape beyond the birth of any words” or more precisely, “the event absorbs what remained still expressible in the apprehension. What I saw, I cannot say.”

© 2008-2012 Ian C Thorne. all rights reserved. about credits privacy contact share