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Tuesday, 31 March 2009
Pseudsday Tuesday

Blogger Lenin, borderline anti-Semitic hater of Israel, fawns on Islam and buys into what he would call the “narrative” of “Islamophobia”. As with many leftists, including those who call themselves feminists, he sees no contradiction between support for Islam and a theoretical equality of women. Provided, of course, that it is theoretical, and the theory is sufficiently opaque.


“Lenin”, like his namesake, is not given to wordplay, so the title of his post “Lacanian Phallacies” is a pleasant surprise. But the author he quotes, Anne McLintock, is deadly serious, as are “Lenin’s” subsequent comments. She, and he, mean it (my emphasis):


"Following Freud, Lacan proclaims 'the absence in women of fetishism.' What is the logic of this second disavowal? In Lacan's texts, women are doomed to inhabit the tongueless zone of the Imaginary. We are forbidden citizenship in the Symbolic, exiled from the archives and encyclopedias, the sacred texts and algebras, the alphas and omegas of history. If women speak at all, it is with male tongues, as ventriloquists of phallic desire. If we look, it is with a male gaze. In this way, Lacan's vision bears an uneasy affinity to the nineteenth-century discourse on degeneration, which figured women as bereft of language, exiled from reason and properly inhabiting the prehistory of the race. For Lacan, as for the discourse on degeneration, women's difference is figured as a chronological one; we inhabit an earlier space in the linear, temporal history of the (male) symbolic self. Pre-oedipal space (the space of domesticity) is naturalized by figuring it as anachronistic space: out of time and prior to symbolic history. Women's historically gendered relation to power is represented as a formally different relation to time: the imperial gesture itself.


With all this talk of algebras and alphas and omegas, it’s time we had a matheme. This one means desire:



Lacan must have found someone, tongueless or not, to lick him into shape. From my piece on pomo pap:


No showcasing of postmodern metatwaddle would be complete without Lacan and his poppycock:


Using the above equation as a yardstick, the Frenchman deconstructs his own:

Thus the erectile organ comes to symbolize the place of jouissance [ecstasy], not in itself, or even in the form of an image, but as a part lacking in the desired image: that is why it is equivalent to the square root of -1 of the signification produced above, of the jouissance that it restores by the coefficient of its statement to the function of lack of signifier (-1).

Yes, Lacan thinks his penis is the square root of minus one. Does it stand up to close scrutiny?


Posted on 03/31/2009 4:11 PM by Mary Jackson
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