Zupancic – 2011 aug 3

Alenka Zupančič

The Real

  • Relationship between symbolic and discursive reality and the real
  • Double the death drive in atheism
  • Philosophical Realism (Meillasoux, Brassiers)
  • Philosophy/Psychoanalysis / Real/Science
  • Nihill Unbound – Ray Brassier
  • Neitsche – return to repetition

Negation

  • Negation as a possible access to the real
  • Freud Negation: Freud_Negation.pdf
  • Two kinds of negation:
    • Rejection of a thought 
      • Rat Man: “You’re going to think it was my mother,” (projection onto the analyst) he will say to the analyst, “but it wasn’t my mother.”
      • “I reject the idea that this person could be my mother because I dislike that idea.”
    • Acknowledgement of a disappointed expectation
      • Amail judgment by a psyche that fails to encounter in the outside world a satisfying mental representation of what it desires

Real and the Impossible

  • The real as the impossible (Roussier)
  • An inventory of the impossible
    • Contemporary interest in the ‘impossible’ (nothing is impossible, everything is transparent)
    • One thing that is dissapearing with the dissapearance of the impossible is a complete ontological domain
    • On the other hand – the dimension of the impossible begins to expand (e.g.: smoking) as ontological domains be
    • The end of the movie The Grauduate as a happy ending – impossible to see this as a happy ending now
  • Gerard Bagemark – still from the movie Bladerunner (1982)
    • Anticipating and announcing this dissapearing of the impossible
    • The end of the movie where Harisson Ford is attacked by Roy through the wall – no wall is impenetrable
  • Slovenian TV – 
    • “for a cost of $40,000,000 you can get to space – never before has space been as accessible as it is today”
    • the money being just some formality needing to be overcome
    • at the same time economic catastrophies/
    • not about science and technology
  • Lacan 
    • When we come up against the impossible, we are coming up against a logical impossible
    • The real should not be confused with
    • It is a certain development of ontology itself
  • Clement Rosset – Le reel et son double
    • Heureux, malgré tout
    • continuation of Neischzte
    • basic argument: The reat always tends to strike us as impossible in some way.  Either it’s to barbaric/complex or too simple.
    • anxiety (is this all there is?) / contempt (idiotic, barbaric)
    • circumventing these to replace them with a ‘true’ real (the double)
    • Structure
      • prophetic illusion – and its double
      • metaphysical illusion – the world and its double (all the philosophy, religion traditions).  construction and reconstruct the ‘really real’ world.  psychoanalysis enters here as well.
      • psychological illusion
    • notion of illusion is very specific – not eronious perception / 
      • we correctly perceive a thing or a situation, but we refuse the consequence of it
      • Bouberouche – 1893
        • Adelle turns the tables on Bouberoche – convinces him that there is
        • Bouberoche doesn’t want to be
      • it is not that i don’t want to see – but this is far as i’m prepared to go
      • this is the same as “fetishist dissavowel”
    • in respect to prophecies: 
      • oracles break through, and surprise.  when a prophecy comes true, there is a splitting of the real – fulfilled prophecy confronts us with an unwelcome coincidence.  the expected event coincides with itself.
      • Sommerset Maum – the servant and death
      • Oedipus the King – a tragedy of inevitability, singularity, not a tragedy of ambiguity
    • the real – something intishguishable from its meaning  (mind / brain)
    • there exists a joyful / gay side to the prophetic
      • positive prophesies – we are dealing with a split/redoubling… not motivated by a psychological motivation to what it
      • negative prophesies –
    • the element of surprise
      • we are surprised that we are we (surprised that you are you)
    • the real is not the singularity of meaning – but the impass or the impossible that
    • psyhological case of repetition / doubling
      • strange repetition which seems to be outside subjective reach (Freud: Woman who married three times to a man who died)
    • problems with the arguments: 
      • using prophecies – as a symbolic
      • prophecies are not ‘put on’ the real
      • the shock that accompanies a surprise accounts for a ‘third reality’ (linked to the Lacanian notion of the real)
        • the symbolic
        • something on top of the symbolic
        • the real
    • the real is more like a structural contradiction / impass / impossibility than a purity or an access
  • Repression and Supression 
    • Repression may come from supression
    • Superssion may come from repression
    • Myth is the attempt to give an epic form to what is operative in the structure
  • The impass/imposisble structures the field of the symbolic
  • The real is not presymbolic
  • The symbolic is a mythological form of it’s own impass (where its own structure lacks being)
  • Freud’s own dialogues about the ‘real’ psychoanalysis itself
    • seduction as empiracle reality vs. real as a fantasy (real in the mind)
    • raw materialism vs. psychological idealism
    • La Planche
      • seduction exists not in the material and not in the fantastic, but in a third reality
      • three elements:
        • specific subjective figure
        • one kind of cause – elements of words, gestures – enigmatic messages
        • one kind of cause – this strange objective or object like surplus of these messages
    • the unconscious – is always already a construction which interprets from the point of view of the leftover (that which is outside of consciousness)
  • Psychoanalysis in this formulation becomes about the positing of a kind of ‘objectivity’ that is non-empirical and inside intersubjectivity
  • The real has no possible face of its own
    • by suggesting an obvious and radical transformation of its object – the double is the shortest path to the real… appearing in the very obviousness of its invisibility
    • Kantian sublime – the real as something to horrifying or too vast to become part of representation.  The breakdown
    • Tautologies and Wittgenstein
    • The Lacanian real comes out of the breakdown of representation
    • Lacanian real should not be a vaste and gross violence to the symbolic, but an impass in the structure of the symbolic
  • Lacanian real is much more materialist

One figure of the real – It’s ‘double’

  • The notion of the double – doppleganger
  • Successful repetition of the same – differs from the similar, and differs from singular (i.e.: your identity card is not you)
  • The fulfilled prophecy is is a failure of a difference – it is a double.  It is the success of a double (the prophecy and the taking place of the event is a *perfect* doubling)…
  • Repetition –
  • The double is the coincidence of the familiar and the unfamiliar – the same and unfamiliar – precisely because it is the same it is unfamiliar
  • The double is the preveledged figure of the singular – an uncountable one.  When a double appears we no longer can simply count-it-as-one

The Double

  • William Willisson, Doscteyvsky, Edgar Allen Poe
  • Double started as a comedic form – then began to be treated as uncanny
  • 20th Century literature has returned to the theme of the double as comedy: Saramago (The Double), Operation Shilock, Agota Kristof (trilogy), The Double: A Petersburg Poem (1846) by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.
    • Moon (2009)
    • Fight Club – creating a double to do all the things you wish you could do
  • Not so much about the appearance of the double, but the coincidence
  • e.g.: People don’t simply inhabit space, we cary our place with us wherever we go (“where you go there you are”)
  • Ontologically – splits the homogeneity of event and being by challenging the singularity of time/space
  • “Who knows what Columbus might have discovered had America not blocked his way!” – Stanislaw Jerzy Lec
  • What makes me me?
    • it is the difference between myself and my double (i.e.: all the other things i could be), not the other people out there (who are different)
  • The Double: A Petersburg Poem (1846) by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.
    • connections with Bartleby
    • the double appears at the working place of the first person protragonist
    • a man siting in front of himself at opposing desk – no one notices – this is the horrible thing (that no one else noticed that the figure was his double / doppelganger).  this double is his terror.
    • writing a letter to a friend about the double – and trying to appeal to the law / structures about what should be allowed
  • Edgar Allen Poe – The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar
    • mesmeric trances keeping people “alive”
    • meta-stage suspension – resolves into putrescence

NewImage

  • The point ontologically
    • the double is not one or two
    • induces a doubt in the one as ontological entity
  • Otto Rank 
    • The double is a protective device against death
  • “It would not be so hard to die if we precisely knew that we existed…”

Questions

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