Archive for June, 2010

Furrows in the alethosphere 3

June 17, 2010

Furrows in the alethosphere 3

From The Other Side of Psychoanalysis

By Jacques Lacan

This year I have given a large place to the text Hosea, with reference to what Freud extracts from it, according to Sellin. The greatest benefit of it is perhaps not, though it does exist on this level, calling the Oedipus complex into question, which I have called this “ residue of myth,” in psychoanalytic theory. Surely, if there were something necessary here to make present some ocean of mythical knowledge regulating the life of men—and how do we now whether it was harmonious or not? –the best reference could well be what Yahwch condemns, with what I called his ferocious ignorance, with the term” prostitution.”


This is enough of a foothold ( bias), to my mind, and surely a better one than the common reference to the fruits of ethnography. Ethnography conceals all kinds of confusion within itself, through adhering to what it gathers as if it were natural. And how is it gathered? It is gathered in writing, that is to say, detailed, extracted, distorted forever from the supposed terrain on which one is supposedly uncovering it.


This is certainly not to say that mythical knowledge could inform us at greater length, or inform us better, about the essence of the sexual relation.


If psychoanalysis makes sex and, as a dependency, death present for us—even though here nothing is certain, except a general apprehension of a link between sexual difference and death, it’s by demonstrating, in a way that I wouldn’t call lively but merely articulated, that concerning the capture of this being—whatever it may be, which is to say that it is not even a being—in discourse the articulation in which the sexual relation is expressed only ever appears in a complex manner. This complex manner is one that cannot even be said to be mediated, even though there are medii-media, if you prefer—one of which is this real effect that I am calling surplus pleasure, which is the little a.


What does experience indicate to us,, in point of fact? That it is only when this little a is substituted for woman that man desires her. That, inversely, what a woman has to deal with insofar as we are able to speak about this, is this jouissance that is her own and is represented somewhere by a man’s omnipotence, which is precisely where man, when he speaks, when he speaks as master, discover that he is a failure.


This is where one has to start from in analytic experience—what could be called man, that is to say that the male as speaking being, disappears, vanishes through the very effect of the master’s discourse—spell it as you will—through being inscribed solely in castration, which, by this very fact, is properly to be defined as being deprived of woman—woman insofar as she would be realized in a suitably congruent signifier.


Being deprived of woman—this, expressed in terms of the failure of discourse, is what castration means. It is indeed because this is not thinkable that the speaking order institutes this desire, constituted as impossible, as an intermediary and that makes the mother, insofar as she is prohibited, the privileged feminine object.


This is the wrapping established by the fundamental fact that in a mythical union between man and woman there is no possible place that could be defined as sexual.


This is, indeed, where what we grasp in the psychoanalytic discourse—the unifying One, the whole One—is not what is involved in identification. The pivotal identification, the major identification, is the unary trait. It is Being, marked one.


Prior to the promotion of any being, by virtue of a singular one, of what bears the mark from this moment forward, the effect of language arises, as does the first affect. This is what the formulas I wrote on the blackboard are saying.


Somewhere this something that the cogito only marks is isolated, also with the unary trait, that one can suppose the “ I am thinking” has in order to say, “ Therefore, I am.’ Here the effect of division is already marked by an “ I am” which elides the “ I am marked by the one”—for Descartes is, to be sure, inscribed in a scholastic tradition, which he wriggles out of acrobatically, which is not at all to be disdained as a means of escape.


Moreover, it is as a function of this initial position of the “ I am” that the ‘ I am thinking” can be even so much as written. You will recall how I have been writing it for a long time now—“ I am thinking, ‘Therefore I am.’” This ‘ Therefore I am” is a thought.


It supports itself infinitely better by carrying its characteristic of knowledge, which does not go beyond the “ I am marked by the one,” by the singular, by the unique, by what?—by this effect which is, ‘ I am thinking.”


But here again, there is an error in the punctuation, which a long time ago I expressed this—the “ ergo,” which is nothing other than the “ ego” in play, should be put alongside the “ cogito.” The “ I am thinking, therefore, ‘I am’ ” gives the formula its real significance. The cause, the “ ergo,” is thought. The point of departure to take is the effect of what is involved in the simplest order, from which the language effect comes into play at the level of the emergence of the unary trait.


To be sure, the unary trait is never alone. Therefore, the fact that it repeats itself—that it repeats itself in never being the same—is properly speaking the order itself, the order in question because language is present and already there, already efficacious.



Furrows in the alethosphere 2

June 15, 2010

Furrows in the alethosphere 2

From The Other Side of Psychoanalysis

By Jacques Lacan

I mentioned that affect by which the speaking being of a discourse finds itself determined as an object. It has to be said that this object is not nameable. If I try to call it surplus jouissance, this is only a device of nomenclature.


What object is it that results from this affect of a certain discourse? We know nothing about this object, except that it is the cause of desire, that is to say that strictly speaking it manifests itself as want-to-be. There is therefore no being that is thereby determined.


Certainly, what the effect of a given discourse bears upon may well be a being that one may call man, for example, or else a living being to which one ccan add that it is sexed and mortal, and one will fearlessly advance toward thinking that what the discourse of psychoanalysis bears upon is here, under the pretext that sex and death arre constantly at issue here. But from our perspective, if it is true that we start at the level of what reveals itself initially, and as the prime fact, to be structured like a language, we are not yet at this point. It is not a question of beings ( etant) in the effect of language. It is only a question of a speaking Being( etre). At the outset we are not at the level of beings, but at the level of Being.


We must, however, beware of the mirage here of thinking that Being is thereby settled, and beware of the error, which lies in wait for us, of assimilating this to everything that has been worked out as the dialectic of an initial position of being and nothingness.


The initial affect of this effect, let’s now put this in inverted commas, of “ Being” only appears at the level of what makes itself the cause of desire, that is to say, at the level of what we situate, of this initial effect of the settling, of the analyst—the analyst as the place that I am trying to grasp with these little letters on the blackboard. This is where the analyst positions himself. He positions himself as the cause of desire. This is an eminently unprecedented position, if not a paradoxical one, one that is validated by a practice.


The importance of this practice can be measured by taking what has been designated as the master’s discourse as a reference point. It is not a question here of a distant relationship, or of an overview, but of a fundamental relationship—the analytic practice is, properly speaking, initiated by this master’s discourse.


There is something that becomes present by virtue of the fact that all determined of the subject, and therefore of thought, depends on discourse. In this discourse, in effect, there arises the moment at which the master becomes differentiated. It would be quite false to think that this occurs at the level of a risk. This risk is, despite everything, quite mythical. It’s the trace of a myth that still remains in Hegelian phenomenology. Isn’t this master nothing other than the one who is the strongest? This is certainly not what Hegel records. The struggle for pure prestige at the risk of death still belongs to the realm of the imaginary. What does the master do? This is what the articulation I am giving you of discourse shows. He plays upon what I have called, in different terms, the crystal of language.


Why not use in this respect what can be designated in French by the homonym
m’dtre, m’etre a moi-meme? It’s from this that the m’etre signifier emerges, whose second term I leave to you to write as you will.

在這方面,法文裡的「我即存在」m’dtre, m’etre a moi-meme 跟主人的master一詞同音異詞,用來表達不是非常貼切嗎?就是從這裡,「我即存在」的意符開始出現。至於存在後的第二個術語是什麼,我讓你們去任意發揮書寫。

This unique signifier operates by means of its relation with what is already there, already articulated, in such a way that we can only conceive of it against the presence of a signifier that is already there, that, I would say, has always been there. In effect, if this unique signifier, the signifier “ the master,” write it as you wish, is articulated to some part of a practice that it orders, then this practice is already shot through, woven through, with what, to be sure, does not yet emerge from it, namely, the signifying articulation. The latter is at the heart of all knowledge, even if it could only have been approached through know-how.


We find the trace of the initial presence of this knowledge where it is already some distance off, by virtue of having been fiddled with for a long time in what is called the philosophical tradition—a judgment about the grip that the signifier of the master has on this knowledge.


Let’s not forget that when Descartes asserts his “ I am thinking therefore I am,” it’s by virtue of having for sometimes sustained him “ I am thinking” by calling into question, putting in doubt, this knowledge that I am saying is “ fiddled with,” which is the knowledge already elaborated at length through the master’s intervention.


We can we say about contemporary science that will give us a reference point? I will mention three stages here because, poor teacher that I am, I am not sure that you are cottoning onto my sentences. Three stages—science—behind, philosophy—and beyond, something of which we have a notion if only through biblical anthemas.



Furrows in the alethosphere 1

June 4, 2010

Furrows in the alethosphere 1


From The Other Side of Psychoanalysis


By Jacques Lacan


A lot of water has passed under the bridge since our meeting, I am speaking of the one in April, and not the most recent one, which took place elsewhere, and only with some of you.


The exchange of remarks on the steps of the pantheon was not of a bad level, since it enabled me to go over a number of points that deserved to be made precise, in response to questions that were not at all inept. That is what I think with the lapse of a week. But my first reaction immediately after when I was with someone who was accompanying me was, however, of a certain inadequacy.


Even the best of those who spoke, and who were not unjustified in their questions, seemed to me, except at the start, to be lagging behind a bit. This seems to me to have been reflected in the fact that, at least in this friendly interpellation that was still not a questioning, they situated me within a number of references.


These references are not all to be rejected, certainty. I recall that the first was to Georgias, of whom I am supposed to be conducting some sort of repetition. Why not? But what was inappropriate is that in the mouth of the person who evoked this character whose effectiveness we, in our days, cannot evaluate very well it was about someone from the history of thought. This is the distancing that seems disturbing to me—this term enables a sort of sampling of views from a distance concerning this person and that person whom one has bracketed together under “ function of thought.”


It seems to me that there is nothing less homogeneous here—if I can put it like that—nothing that would enable one to define a species. It is not legitimate to give some people, in whatever capacity one might imagine them, the function of a species representing thought. Thought is not a category. I would almost say it is an affect. Although, this is not to say that it is at its most fundamental under the aspect of affect.


There is only one affect—this constitutes a certain position, a new one to be introduced into the world, which, I am saying, is to be referred to what I am giving you a schema of, transcribed onto the blackboard, when I speak of the psychoanalytic discourse.


As a matter of fact, transcribing it into the blackboard is distinct from talking about it. I remember that at Vincennes, when I appeared there for the first time which hasn’t been repeated since, but which will be repeated. It occurred to someone to call out to me that there were real things that were truly preoccupying the assembly. Namely, that there was a brawl going on at a place at some distance from where we were gathered, that this was what we should be thinking about, that the blackboard had nothing to do with this real. That’s where the error is.


I would say that, if there is any chance of grasping something called the real, it is nowhere other than on the blackboard. And even, whatever commentary I am able to give it, which will take the form of speech, relates only to what is written on the blackboard.


That’s a fact. And it is demonstrated by this fact, by this artifice that is science, whose emergence one would be completely wrong to inscribe as arising solely out of a philosophical concoction. Metaphysical, rather than physical, science, perhaps. Does our scientific physics deserve to be called metaphysical? This is what would need to be spelled out.


Spelling it out seems possible to me, namely on the basis of the psychoanalytic discourse. In effect, from the perspective of this discourse, there is only one affect, which is, namely, the product of the speaking being’s capture in a discourse, where this discourse determines its status as object.


This is where the Cartesian cogito derives its exemplary value from, provided that one examine it and revise it, as I will do once again, today, to start with.



Knowledge and truth 4

June 3, 2010

Knowledge and truth 4
Encore by Jacques Lacan

I am going to tell you a little secret about those beings from which the letter is wrought. Despite everything people have said, for example, about Lenin, I don’t think either hate or love, hainamoration, has ever really killed anyone. Don’t tell me stories about Mrs. Freud! On that score, I have Jung’s testimony. He told the truth. Indeed, that was his flow—he told nothing but that.


Those who still manage to make those kinds of rejections of being are really the ones who partake of scorn. I will make you write it this time, since today I’m having fun, meprix. That makes uniprix. We live in the age of supermarkets, so one must know what one is capable of producing, even by way of being.


That hitch is that the Other, the locus, knows nothing. One can no longer hate God if he himself knows nothing—in particular, of what is going on. When one could hate him, one could believe he loved us, since he didn’t hate us in return. This is not apparent, despite the fact, in certain cases, people went at its full speed ahead.


Lastly, as I come to the end of these discourses that I have the strength to pursue before you, I would like to tell you an idea that came to me, about which I have reflected just a little bit. The misfortune of Christ is explained to us by the idea of saving men. I find, rather, that the idea was to save God by giving a little presence and actuality back to that hatred of God regarding which we are, and for good reason, rather indecisive.


That is why I say that the imputation of the unconscious is an incredible act of charity. The subjects know, they know. But all the same, they don’t know everything. At the level of this not-everything ( pas-tout), only the Other doesn’t know. It is the Other who constitutes the not-everything, precisely in that the Other is the part of the not-at-all-knowledgeable ( pas-savant-tout) in the not-everything.


Thus, it may momentarily be convenient to make the Other responsible for this, to which analysis leads in the most avowed manner, though no one realizes it: if libido is only masculine, it is only from where the dear woman is whole, in other words, from the place from which man sees her, that the dear woman can have an unconscious.


And what does it help her do? It helps her, as everyone knows, make the speaking being, who is reduced her to man, speak, in other words—I don’t know if you have noticed this in analytic theory—it helps her exist only as mother. She has unconscious effects, but her unconscious—at the limit point at which she is not responsible for everyone’s unconscious, in other words, at the point at which the Other she deals with, the Other with a capital O, works in such a way that she knows nothing, because the Other knows even less, given how difficult it is to even maintain its existence—this unconscious, what can we say of it, if not to sustain with Freud that it doesn’t leave her sitting pretty?


The last time, I played ( joue), as I allow myself to do, on the equivocation, a bit farfetched, between il hait ( he hates) and il est ( he is). I enjoy ( jouis) that equivocation only insofar as I ask whether it is worthy of a pair of scissors. That is precisely what is at stake in castration.


That being as such may provoke hatred cannot be ruled out. Certainly, Aristotle’s whole concern was, on the contrary, to conceive of being as that by which beings with less being participate in the highest of beings. And Saint Thomas succeeded in reintroducing that into the Christian tradition—which is not surprising given that, having spread among the Gentiles, the Christian tradition had necessarily been thoroughly shaped thereby, the upshot being that one had but to pull the strings to work again. But do people realize that everything in the Jewish tradition goes against that? The dividing line ( coupure) there does not run from the most perfect to the least perfect. The least perfect there is quite simply what it is, namely, radically imperfect, and one must but obey with the finger and the eye, if I dare to boot. The latter chose his people and one cannot go against that.


Isn’t it revealed therein that it is far better to betray him occasionally than to “ be-thrate’ ( l’etre-hair) him, the former being what the Jews obviously did not deprive themselves of doing. They couldn’t work it out (en sortir) any other way.


On the subject of hatred, we’re so deadened that no one realizes that a hatred, a solid hatred, is addressed to being, to the very being of someone who is not necessarily God.


We remain stuck—and that is why I said that a is a semblance of being—at the level—and it is in that respect that analysis, as always, is a little bit lame—of the notion of jealous hatred, the hatred that springs forth from “ jealoussance,” the hatred that ‘ sprimages forth” from a third party. He observes the little guy and, pallidus, the latter pales in observing the conlactaneum suum hanging on the nipple. Fortunately, this ( jealousissance) is the first substitute jouissance, according to Freud—the desire evoked on the basis of a metonymy that is inscribed on the basis of a presumed demand, addressed to the Other, that is, on the basis of the kernel of what I called Ding, in my seminar, The Ethics of Psychoanalysis, namely, the Freudian Thing, in other words, the very neighbor ( prochain) Freud refuses to love beyond certain limits.


The child who is gazed at has it—he has the a. Is having the a the same as being it? That is the question with which I will leave you today.




June 2, 2010









June 1, 2010




頂樓供奉著過去佛燃燈佛,現在佛釋迦牟尼佛,及未來佛阿彌陀佛。佛像前擺著一個透明的功德箱,旁邊垂掛著10元 20元 30 元40元 50元不等的紅藍綠紫等彩帶。我旁邊的一位中年婦人立刻掏出50元,投入功德箱,然後披上紅色彩帶,被引導進入在附近的密室裏,接受修行喇嘛的加持祝福。













June 1, 2010















June 1, 2010