Lacanian Psychology

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Lacanian Psychology

Postby LD330 » Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:18 pm

Field Notes on Lacanian Psychology:

Three Orders: Real, Symbolic, Imaginary
Real: Sensation (But not the word sensation. The Real is impossible to articulate, as articulation is symbolic)
Symbolic: Language, the signifying realm
Imaginary: Fantasy, Imagination

Three Parts of a Human: Jouissance, Language, and the Subject
Jouissance: Translated "enjoyment," one's (Real) drive as one acts within the symbolic order.
Language: Symbolic function that is also part of the libidinal drive, conceptualized as jouissance or fundamentally meaningless libido; language can only have meaning with respect to a metalanguage.
Subject: Where one conceives one's "I". May not be where one is interpellated in the symbolic order. S(a) is the subject with respect to an other (autre in French), S(A) is subject with respect to the Big Other, or "society" as a whole, $ is the subject barred from the symbolic order, or the biological entity.

Three Structures: Neurotic, Psychotic, Pervert
Neurotic: Structured such that existence poses a question for the subject
Psychotic: Subject is foreclosed from the symbolic order; there is a hole in the symbolic universe
Pervert: Seeks to inspire jouissance in the other; has no question

Formulas:
Desire is the Desire of the Other: I feel desire insofar as I am desired by the other (a) or situate myself as symbolically desired by the Big Other (A). We are brought into this world by desire.

Subject-Presumed-To-Know: As a subject in the symbolic order, everyone is presumed to know some things. One is demanded to "know" in order to operate in the symbolic world, which is everyday life. This demand to know is jouissance: Knowledge is the Jouissance of the Other. Enjoyment is a superego injunction: everyone must "enjoy" and "be enjoying themselves" in order to make those around them comfortable, to signify that everything is alright. The most revolutionary thing, in order to Not-Know, rather than simply replace knowledge with another form of knowledge, might just be to feel ashamed.

Transference (or Love): S(a) inspires desire in the other; once desired, the subject can "suicide" through love to become that S(a) as their new subject-point S. In his seminar on Transference Lacan says this is what Alcibiades was trying to get Socrates to do in Plato's Symposium-- to bring Socrates' desire for him to the forefront and have him suicide by becoming the Beloved (loved as S(a)) as opposed to Lover (loved as S). Socrates deflects this desire and looks away, retaining his S in spite of his love and desire. "Aphrodite is not a smiling goddess..."

One is reminded of the Book of Lies chapter the Smoking Dog: "This is the Tragedy of Man when facing Love and Death he turns to bay. He is no more hare, but boar."

Conclusion

From these formulas and reading Lacan's work I have come to the conclusion that the best thing we can do to improve the world is to interpellate (bring into the symbolic order) others at their "I" subject-point, where they have understanding of themselves in existence and can articulate their own narrative. Clearly I am not the only one who Doesn't Know: nobody else Knows either. This is my project.

Further experimental work involves the libido, knowledge-as-libido, and trying to bring to the forefront and understand others' libidinal drives, including means of satisfying these drives. Another take on this is to come up with a possible mode of "society" based on these principles, with everyone being treated at their subject point. The trick is this cannot be a "should" or a super-ego injunction.
"People in this world look at things mistakenly, and think that what they do not understand must be the void. This is not the true void. It is bewilderment."
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Re: Lacanian Psychology

Postby AliceKnewIt » Sun Apr 08, 2018 5:23 am

I haven't studied Lacan. Thank you for the summary, it's fascinating.
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Re: Lacanian Psychology

Postby LD330 » Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:42 am

No problem! There's a wiki with a lot more info on Lacan: http://nosubject.com/Main_Page

I'm still going through his works but just got this formula today, which is important in his work: There Is No Such Thing as a Sexual Relationship.

So what he means here is that in Feminine Sexuality, as the Female Pole, the Female knows that the Male doesn't know. The Male has the Phallus in place of Knowledge.

So here the Female has ontological anxiety. They don't feel as though they exist. The question is not "Am I [my name]?" but "Am I Me?", if here the Female is always mediated through the other's Phallus as opposed to Knowledge-- Knowledge of which would constitute the Sexual Relationship. The "Me" would be the Female's Phallus.

In the Male Pole this is castration anxiety, the fear of losing the phallus, which is just generally symbolic (status anxiety).

In this way there is only phallic jouissance, both Male and Female. Female Jouissance corresponds to knowing there is no Big Other, that no one else knows. That it's all just a play of masks for Herself. Hence the ontological anxiety.

"Sexuality is nothing but a configuring of the signifying-minus [the subtraction from reality with the signifier] and surplus-enjoyment."
"People in this world look at things mistakenly, and think that what they do not understand must be the void. This is not the true void. It is bewilderment."
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Re: Lacanian Psychology

Postby AliceKnewIt » Mon Apr 09, 2018 8:28 am

Now I am totally lost! LOL
:shock: :?:
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Re: Lacanian Psychology

Postby LD330 » Mon Sep 17, 2018 5:20 pm

Sorry Alice. That was a very abstract idea.

I'm about 2/3 done with his seminars and have gleaned much more knowledge from reading them.

Desire and Language

It's possible to take desire from language. Consider a child learning how to speak. They want to enter into language in order to be able to communicate with the adults. This is their desire to enter into language. We still have this same desire. This was for me the appeal of Erowid and drug literature like Fear and Loathing or Junky. The authors' entrance into a new language, in this case the language of the drug world, resulted in their also taking desire.

I think it's possible to take desire continuously. Doing so would create a "Living Language." If a group of people had no ressentiment, meaning they would not interfere and let things take their course, we could continuously take and let a language evolve, phenomenologically describing states and naming them.

I actually took a lot of desire from Crowley's work and his associated lexicon.

Desire and the Big Other

Lacan has a very beautiful formula for how we take desire. I wish I could draw the diagram out.

Basically desire flows from the Big Other, A, (our idea of everyone else) up to $ <> D, the barred subject's desire or phantasy. This barred desire flows horizontally into a limit, the phallus. Moving downward from the phallus, through the line of anal sexuality, we hit S(A), or the subject with respect to the Big Other.

Enjoyment and Sexual Discourse

"The woman is in a position, with respect to sexual enjoyment, to punctuate the equivalence of enjoyment and the semblance [semblance here being her discourse-- what clothes she likes, what she finds hot for herself, how she enjoys, etc]...

In this lies the distance man finds from her. That the semblance is here enjoyment, for the man, is sufficiently indicated by the fact that enjoyment is semblance [He enjoys her discourse, clothes, etc.]...

The woman knows enjoyment and semblance, if they are equivalent in a dimension of discourse, are nonetheless distinct in the test, that the woman represents for man the truth."

No Such Thing as a Sexual Relationship

There is no such thing as a sexual relationship. Belief in the existence of a sexual relationship is one way people get "Choronzon'd."

Jouissabsence vs. Jouisspresence

There are two types of jouissance: jouisspresence, or the standard phallic jouissance, and jouissabsence, the feminine form of jouissance. Males have jouissabsence too, it is right underneath jouisspresence and generally is "unrecognized."

Females have a mixture of jouissabsence and jouisspresence. Males do too, but as males, generally only the jouisspresence is recognized.

Idealism and Gender

No philosopher, not even Berkeley, has ever pushed idealism so far as to deny the existence of two distinct sexes.

Virtual Sexuality

"In copulation the subject cannot really possess the body that he embraces. He does not know the limits of possible jouissance, I mean the one that he can have of the body of the Other, as such, because these limits are uncertain... Here we find the fainting function (the little death) to which he loses the third element of the relation of the couple."

Hitting the limits of jouissance by the reduction of the "three" of a sexual relationship down to the two. (The third in the relationship being the others besides me and you). I think there is a Kabbalistic metaphor here, of reducing Binah to Chockmah.

Ethics and the Big Other

I don't think any idea of society is ethical. It's better to have general resentment against an individual than it is to push them against the entire society or an entire group of people. The "everyone-else", meaning everyone else in the world, is the closest thing to God there is, and to invoke this against a person is unethical. That is not their subject point. I think this is one reason Satanism, especially including ONA-style Satanism, can frighten people. They don't invoke the Big Other, and are more ethical (right) for it.

But this formula flows back into the one articulated above in "Desire and the Big Other." I think most desire is female-- that is, desire is the desire of the other, or an image of oneself; and with that image the possibility of a new world.

If anyone is interested in reading Lacan, most of his work, including untranslated seminars, is available at http://www.lacaninireland.com/web/translations/seminars/. Finding out every other seminar is already translated online has been a great boon for me.
"People in this world look at things mistakenly, and think that what they do not understand must be the void. This is not the true void. It is bewilderment."
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