Anxiety 54 Jacques Lacan

Anxiety 54

Jacques Lacan
雅克 拉康



1962 – 1963

Seminar 7: Wednesday 9 January 1963

A surface with a single face cannot be turned inside out. For
effectively you take a Moebius strip;, you make it; you see that there are two ways to make it, depending on whether one turns, one makes the half turn that I spoke about above to the right or to the left and that they do not overlap. But if you turn one of them inside out it will always be identical to itself.


This is what I call not having a specular image.


You know on the other hand that I told you that in the cross-cap,
when, by means of a section, a cut, which has no other condition
than that of rejoining itself, after having included in it the hole-point of the cross-cap, when, I am saying, you isolate a part of the cross-cap, it remains a Moebius strip.


Here is the residual part. I constructed it for you, I am passing it around. It has its interest because, let me tell you: this is o. I give it to you like a host, for you will make use of it subsequently.


That is how o is made.


It is made like that when any cut whatsoever has occurred,
whether it is that of the cord, that of circumcision, and some
(18) others still which we will have to designate.


There remains, after this cut whatever it may be, something
comparable to the Moebius strip, something which does not have a specular image. Now then consider carefully what I want to tell you.


The first phase, the vase which is here has its specular image,
the ideal ego, constitutive of the world of the common object.
Add to it o in the form of a cross-cap, and separate out in this cross-cap the little object o that I have placed in your hands.


There remains, united to i'(o), the remainder, namely a Moebius strip, in other words – I am representing it for you here – it is the same thing as if you make there begin, from the opposite point of the edge of the vase, a surface which connects up with itself, as in the Moebius strip.


Because from that moment, the whole vase becomes a Moebius
strip, because an ant walking along the outside enters the
inside without any difficulty. The specular image becomes the
strange and invasive image of the double, becomes that which
happens little by little at the end of the life of Maupassant
when he begins by no longer seeing himself in the mirror,
or when he perceives in a room something which turns its back
on him and regarding which he immediately knows that he is
not without some relationship to this ghost, when the ghost
turns back, he sees that it is himself.


This is what is involved in the entry of o into the world of the real, which it is only returning to. And notice,_to end, what is involved. It may seem strange, bizarre to you as a hypothesis, that something reassembles this. Notice however that if we put it outside the operation of the visual field, behave like a blind man, close your eyes for a moment, and feeling your way, follow the edge of this transformed vase.


But it is a vase like the other, there is only one hole because there is only one edge. It appears to have two of them. And this ambiguity between the one and the two, I think that those who have simply read a little know that it is a common ambiguity concerning the apparition of the phallus in the field of dream appearance – and not only dreams – of the sexual organ where there apparently is no real phallus. Its ordinary mode of apparition is to appear in the form of two phalluses. There, that’s enough for today!


I would like to manage to tell you today a certain number of
things about what I have taught you to designate as the object o, this object o towards which the aphorism that I put forward the last time about anxiety orients us, namely that it is not without an object.


This is why the object o comes this year into the centre of our remarks. And if effectively it is inscribed in the
frame of this anxiety that I took as a title, it is precisely for the reason that it is essentially from this angle that it is possible to speak about it, which means again that anxiety is its only subjective expression.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: