Knowledge and truth

Knowledge and Truth 3
知識與真理
Encore by Jacques Lacan
雅克、拉岡

What is knowledge? It is strange that, prior to Descartes, the question of knowledge had never been raised. Analysis had to come onto the scene before this question was raised afresh.

知識是什麼?耐人尋味的,笛卡爾以前,知識的問題從未被提出過。精神分析學必需先進入這個場域,才能重新提出這個問題。

Analysis came to announce to us that there is knowledge that is not known, knowledge that is based on the signifier as such. A dream does not introduce us into any kind of unfathomable experience or mystery—it is read in what is said about it, and one can go further by taking up the equivocations therein in the most anagrammatic sense of the word ( “ equivocations”). It is regarding that aspect of language that Saussure raised the question whether the strange punctuation marks he found in the saturnine verses were intentional or not. That is where Saussure was awaiting Freud. And it is where the question of knowledge is raised afresh.

精神分析學對我們宣稱,有些知識是不可思議,即使是以意符作為基礎的知識。我們作夢所感受的知識,並非什麼深不可測的經驗或神秘。我們閱讀夢境的所見所聞,然後像解答字謎一般地在字裡行間拆解分析,繼續探究下去。關於語言的這一方面,語言學家索緒爾提出這個問題:憂鬱症患者所寫的詩句,標點符號怪異,那是自然流露?還是刻意這樣?那就是索緒爾有待佛洛伊德來回答的地方。那是知識的問題要被重新提出的地方。

If you will excuse me for borrowing from an entirely different register, that of the virtues inaugurated by the Christian religion, there is here a sort of belated effect, an offshoot of charity. Wasn’t it charitable of Freud to have allowed the misery of speaking beings to say to itself that there is—since there is the unconscious –something transcendent, truly transcendent, which is but what the species inhabits, namely, language? Wasn’t there, yes, charity in the fact of announcing the news that his everyday life has, in language, a more reasonable basis than it seemed before, and that there is already some wisdom—unattainable object of a vain pursuit—there?

容我借用另一種完全不同的表達方式來解釋,那就是基督教所創導的善行,從事慈善行為的流派後來所產生的影響。佛洛伊德的行為難道不也是一種慈善行為嗎?假如他能讓說話的主體理解,從無意識界來觀照,自己的悲慘境遇,是對自己透露,有某種超越,真正超越的主體居住在自己身上,換句話說,是何許人也居住於自己的語言場域裡。是的,當佛洛伊德宣佈這個訊息:我們的日常生活表面看起來瑣碎無聊,但是經過語言的詮釋,變成深有意義,這難道不就是一種慈善行為?我們表面上看起來徒勞無功地追尋人生難於實現的目標,這個行為的本身難道不就是一種智慧的表現?

Do we need this whole detour to raise the question of knowledge in the form,” What is it that knows?” do we realize that it is the Other? –such as I posited it at the outset, as a locus in which the signifier is posited, and without which nothing indicates to us that there is a dimension of truth anywhere, a dit-mension, the residence of what is said, of this said ( dit) whose knowledge posits the other as locus. The status of knowledge implies as such that there already is knowledge, that it is in the other, and that it is to be acquired ( a prendre). That is why it is related to learning ( fait d’apprendre).

我們有需要迂迴一大圈,才能提出這個知識論的問題:「什麼是知識的主體?」難道我們還沒有體會到,那不就是大它者?如同我一開始就提出的,大它者是意符運作的軌跡。假如沒有大它者,就沒有任何人可以指示,有真理的向度存在。我們的一言一行的跡象,處處都顯示,大它者是我們意符運作的軌跡。人作為知識的主體的地位暗示著,人有認識自己的能力,那就是從大它者那裡,人可以獲得對於自己的知識。那就是為什麼,大它者跟學習有關。

The subject results from the fact that this knowledge must be learned, and even have a price put on it—in other words, it is its cost that values it, not as exchange but as use. Knowledge is worth just as much as it costs ( coute), a pretty penny ( beau-cout), in that it takes elbow grease and that it’s difficult. Difficult to what? Less to acquire it than to enjoy it ( d’en jouir).

主體的形成是由於這個事實:對於自我的知識必須經由學習而獲得,並且願意付出代價去獲得。換句話說,就是你付出的代價,使這個自我的知識具有價值,不是作為交換的價值,而是作為使用的價值。對於自我的知識的價值,跟它所付出的代價,及它所耗費的心力成正比,因為它非經頭破血流無法獲得,它是如此的艱難。艱難什麼?不是艱難於如何獲得,而是艱難於如何享有。

In the enjoying, the conquest of this knowledge is renewed every time it is exercised, the power it yields always being directed toward its jouissance.

當我們享有自我的知識時,每一次我們要運用它,我們就必須重新再克服它一次,它所產生的力量總是朝向它的歡爽。

It is strange that it has never been brought out clearly that the meaning of knowledge resides altogether in the fact that the difficulty of its exercise is the very thing that increases the difficulty of its acquisition. That is because, with every exercise of this acquisition, we find anew that there’s no point asking which of these repetitions was the first to have been learned .

耐人尋味的,有一個隱隱約約跡象顯示,對於自我的知識之所以那麼意義重大,完全就在於,對於自我的知識的運用越是困難,它所獲得的過程越是困難。那是因為,隨著這個獲得以後的每一次的運用,我們會重新發現到,重點不是在於詢問,這些重複的運用,有幾樣是原先所學習獲得的。

Of course there are things that run and that certainly seem to work like little machines—they are called computers . I am willing to accept the notion that a computer thinks. But that it knows, who would say such a thing? For the foundation of knowledge is that the jouissance of its exercise is the same as that of its acquisition.

當然,自我的知識會有一些運作,似乎可以像一些小機器般準確無誤。這些機器被稱之為電腦。我願意接受電腦會思維這樣的觀念。但是我無法接受電腦能夠認識自我的觀念。有誰願意說,電腦對自己的一生有所認識?因為認識的基礎是,它獲得的過程時的歡爽越是艱難,它運用時的歡爽就越強烈。

Here we encounter in a sure manner, surer than in Marx’s own work, the true nature of use value, since in Marx’s work use value serves only as an ideal point in relation to exchange value, to which everything is reduced.

在此,我們遭遇到使用價值的真正本質,以一種確定的方式,比馬克思自己的作品還要確定,因為馬克思的工作的使用價值,只是充當一個跟交換價值的理想點,當每一樣東西都貶低成為交換價值的時候。

Let us talk about this learned (appris) that is not based on exchange. With Marx’s knowledge of politics—which is not nothing—one cannot do “ commarxe,” if you will allow me. No more than one can, with Freud’s knowledge, defraud.

讓我談論一下,有關並不建立在交換價值之上的由學習獲的知識。用馬克思膾炙人口的知識的辯證法來說,我們無法拿「馬克思交易」,因為他是非賣品,容我這樣說。同樣的,佛洛伊德的自我的知識也無法拿來交易。

One has but to look to see that, wherever one does not come by such knowledge ( ces saviors) by pounding it into one’s head by tough experience, it falls flat. It can neither be imported nor exported. There is no information that stands up unless it is shaped for use ( forme a l’usage).

我們只要張望一下,就會看得出來。對於自我的認識,若是沒有歷經艱困就獲得,那種認識其實也沒有什麼可稱道。它既無法內化為自信,也無法博得別人的讚賞。除非它能在運用時,表現風範,這種認識只是虛張聲勢。

Thus is deduced the fact that knowledge is in the Other and owes nothing to being except that the latter has borne the letter thereof. From whence it results that being can kill where the letter reproduces, but never reproduces the same, never the same being of knowledge.

因此,我們可以推論,這種虛張聲勢的自我的認識受制於大它者,不是來自主體的實存,除非實存已經能夠建立自己的字母意符。主體的實存能夠從建立的意符那裡操縱,字母意符在哪裡再現它,但字母意符永遠無法再現相同的實存,永遠無法再現相同的知識主體的實存

I think you must have an inkling now of the function I grant the letter in relation to knowledge. I beg you not too quickly associate this function with so-called messages, for it makes the letter analogous to a germ cell , which, in the realm of molecular physiology, must be strictly separated from the bodies with respect to which it transmits life and dead together.

我想你們一定略微知道,我賦予跟自我知識相關的字母意符怎樣的功用。我請求你們不要太過於匆促就將這個功用,跟所謂的訊息傳遞混為一談,因為這樣會使字母意符類同於生殖細胞的功用。在分子生理學的領域,生殖細胞跟身體嚴格區分,因為身體的生存跟死亡都是經根據大它者的基礎,由它們來傳遞。

Marx and Lenin, Freud and Lacan are not coupled in being. It is via the letter they found in the other that, as beings of knowledge, they proceed two by two, in a supposed Other. What is new about their knowledge is that it doesn’t presume the Other knows anything about it—certainly not the being who constituted the letter there—for it is clearly on the basis of the other that he constituted the letter at his own expense, at the price of his being, which, by God, is not nothing at all for each of us, but not a whole lot either, to tell the truth.

馬克思與列寧,佛洛伊德與拉岡,就主體的實存而言,並非是雙雙對對。但是經由他們在大它者那裡所發現的字母意符,作為知識的主體而言,他們是並肩前進,成為被人認同的大它者。他們的自我認知新穎的地方在於,他們並不假定大它者什麼都知道,就字母意符所組成的主體的實存而言,他們確實無法什麼都知道。顯而易見的,他們犧牲自己作為代價,他們以自己主體的實存作為代價,組成自己的字母意符,作為大它者的基礎。就大它者是上帝的標準而言,這樣的犧牲對於我們個別來說,並非毫無意義,但是說實在話,也不是對於全體人類都有意義。

雄伯譯
32hsiung@pchome.com.tw
springherohsiung@gmail.com

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