"How to stop your man from straying"

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Joseph Kay's picture
Joseph Kay
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Oct 19 2006 14:01

if you don't mind, in what way? like the partner being merely a prop for the coherence of your own subjectivity?

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Oct 19 2006 14:04

yeah no moralism intended, i just don't have a clue what i'm talking about

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Oct 19 2006 14:10
Joseph K. wrote:
if you don't mind, in what way? like the partner being merely a prop for the coherence of your own subjectivity?

More fundamentally than that, the notion that subjectivity is grounded in a set of universal experiences (mirror stage, Oedipal conflict, whatever). Lacan can wriggle as much as he likes with talk of subject positions, but when it comes down to it, psychoanalysis in all its variants relies on shared events in the biography of each individual in its attempt to erect a universal, and universalising subject.

I think there's an element of truth to what he says in his "there is no relationship"-style stuff (which revol has picked up on). However, the truth-claims that he (and indeed Freud) makes for his own theories are truly outrageous. So much so that to say "there's an element of truth" means pretty much the same as "it's a load of shite." wink

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Oct 19 2006 14:12

revol: i take it that wasn't the foucault Cosmo quoted when you last read it?

my head's hurting and i'm kinda wishing i'd just told jess to boycott cosmo and been done with it neutral

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Oct 19 2006 14:14
revol68 wrote:
I actually think this is easier in Foucaultian terms.

Instead of power being a prop for our subjectivities, our subjectivities are a configuration of power. Subjectivity is an effect of power rather than vice versa. Of course if Foucault had been a bit more Hegaylian he would have recognised that effect can overwhelm cause and hence subjectivity is not merely stuck in a circuit but rather sparks a gap.

And if revol had been a bit less Hegaylian, he would have realised that this is pretty much what Foucault says, but without being in thrall to dialectical thought in the quite the same way as the wee celtic nipper. wink

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Oct 19 2006 14:27
revol68 wrote:
i've never actually read anything were he talks about that and most interpretations I have read don't suggest an excess that is fundamental.

This is of course to assume that agency can only emerge when effect exceeds cause. Cock. roll eyes

This really fucks me off, like there's only one possible model of agency which is to do with "exceeding," or "excess" or "sites of resistance" or reflexivity or whatever it is this week. And of course, because Foucault isn't doesn't share this vulgar hydraulic model of agency, it means that the subject is non-agentic. angry

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Oct 19 2006 14:28

Actually, it doesn't fuck me off that much, but you know what I mean.

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Oct 19 2006 14:42
revol68 wrote:
I've never seen a man so angry about "vulgar hydraulic model's of agency" but I'm interested in your point. I would have thought subjectivity is reliant on being out of synch with cause, that there is unbridgable gap otherwise we would be at "one" and hence "nothing".

Subjectivity is reliant on being out of synch with cause if & only if the subject has a cause. Personally, I don't think power operates in such a univocal way.

Also, the bit I've highlighted. Is this a claim about the "human condition," or are some people more "at one" than others? I.e., are some individuals more "out of synch with cause" (and therefore more agentic) than others? Not that I'm trying to trap you into some kind of vanguardism or anything. wink

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Oct 19 2006 14:51
revol68 wrote:
it is a claim about the human condition, aye, though it'd also extend to chimps and other animals that can engage in abstract thought. I'm saying being out of synch is fundamental to being a subject, that this is pretty much an either/or, and that this "fundamental alienation", eg being both an object and a subject and this irreconcilability can only be overcome with death.

You're ½-Taig. Does this not remind you more than a little of the doctrine of Original Sin? Vale of tears, and all that shit?

Actually, it's more gnostic than it is catholic. But anyway.

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Oct 19 2006 14:53
revol68 wrote:
also isn't the very reason the proletariat is the "revolutionary subject" because it is exactly out of synch, it's the fundamental part that is also "denied", the class in society but not of it. So yeah I'm vanguardist in that I believe the proletariat is a much more plausiable revolutionary subject than the chattering classes.

And you make that transition from individual subjectivity to class subjectivity how?

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Oct 19 2006 14:58
revol68 wrote:
the gnostic belief that the world isn't at one with itself that it was botched is quite relevant.

eek Fucking hell. You love your dialectics, don't you?

Well if you're happy hanging your politics on a reframed version of a 2,000-year old creation myth, that's fine with me.

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Oct 19 2006 15:01
revol68 wrote:
by the means of an analogy

So in what sense is a class relevantly similar to an individual in order for the analogy to hold? Do classes have experiences, hopes, dreams, fears, etc, in the same way that individuals do, for instance?

I kind of hope you say yes, you old romantic, you.

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Oct 19 2006 15:03
revol68 wrote:
the button wrote:
revol68 wrote:
the gnostic belief that the world isn't at one with itself that it was botched is quite relevant.

eek Fucking hell. You love your dialectics, don't you?

Well if you're happy hanging your politics on a reframed version of a 2,000-year old creation myth, that's fine with me.

you do realise i'm not talking about the world actually being out of synch ie in itself, rather our experiance of it.

Let me guess. The New Man in the communist society will be able to see the world as it truly is, for the first time in history. grin

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Oct 19 2006 15:05
revol68 wrote:
anyway you make the distinction between class subjectivity and individual subjectivity how?

I don't. But then I don't fetishise subjectivity as the locus of agency, so I don't have to. tongue

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Oct 19 2006 15:09
revol68 wrote:
do individuals have dreams, hopes and fears that aren't bound up in the social and hence class, sexuality, race etc

Your not being very Foucaultian now, well you are in a very Anglo reading of him.

I was just giving you a "for instance" in what the basis of the analogy could be. So what is the basis of the analogy?

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Oct 19 2006 15:15
the button wrote:
The New Man in the communist society will be able to see the world as it truly is, for the first time in history. grin

grin grin

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Oct 19 2006 15:17
revol68 wrote:
the basis of the analysis is that subjectivity is is not reducable to individuals, just as class is not reducable to individuals, and yet it is fundamentally articulated and lived through individuals.

Fair enough. That's not an analogy (thank fuck -- attempts to analogise your way from individual to either class or society are invariably fucked. Freud's Civilisation & its discontents for instance).

So subjectivity's more like the Holy Spirit, then?*

*Joke.

petey
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Oct 19 2006 15:20
john wrote:
Surely the best way to oppose prescribed gender roles is just to ignore them?

yes, but ...

john wrote:
I mean genetic determinism is pretty easily discredited - as all you need to do is act contrarily to how the genes say you should behave.

this is not an option. the question isn't ignoring your genes, it's determining which members of the list of "genetically programmed" beahviors is really genetically programmed, and which are ideological impositions. a predisposition to depression is genetic, you know. i wish i could act contrarily to that.

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Oct 19 2006 15:36
revol68 wrote:
So where do you think agency lies then?

I don't think agency "lies" anywhere. I think we tie ourselves up in all kinds of knots because of the role the notion of "potential" (or "tension", as it's known in its dialectical guise) has had in political theory. Agency "is", only in & through its exercise -- just like power is diffuse and is only "there" when it's exercised. Or "articulated", as you put it yourself. This being articulation in the sense that a limb or a lorry is articulated, rather than in the sense of a word being spoken.

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Oct 19 2006 15:40
revol68 wrote:
we'll have no talk of genetics here, this is a wishy washy social science thread for the discussion of speculative hocus pocus dressed in dialetics and discourses.

Nah, go nuts with yer genetics and that. I'm off home in a bit.

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Oct 19 2006 15:43
the button wrote:
revol68 wrote:
So where do you think agency lies then?

I don't think agency "lies" anywhere. I think we tie ourselves up in all kinds of knots because of the role the notion of "potential" (or "tension", as it's known in its dialectical guise) has had in political theory. Agency "is", only in & through its exercise -- just like power is diffuse and is only "there" when it's exercised. Or "articulated", as you put it yourself. This being articulation in the sense that a limb or a lorry is articulated, rather than in the sense of a word being spoken.

.... this in turn suggests (to me at least), that power & agency are not locked in some sort of dialectical opposition, but are always present similtaneously. Which presumably that's what old baldy (not me) was on about when he said that disciplinary power enables as well as contrains.

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Oct 19 2006 15:45
revol68 wrote:
the button wrote:
revol68 wrote:
So where do you think agency lies then?

I don't think agency "lies" anywhere. I think we tie ourselves up in all kinds of knots because of the role the notion of "potential" (or "tension", as it's known in its dialectical guise) has had in political theory. Agency "is", only in & through its exercise -- just like power is diffuse and is only "there" when it's exercised. Or "articulated", as you put it yourself. This being articulation in the sense that a limb or a lorry is articulated, rather than in the sense of a word being spoken.

Not following, power is what power does? The law is the law? Aren't these all attempts to deny the negative ontology behind them? The gap in our reality?

If you like. But this is very much a Hegaylian's reaction to non-Hegaylian thought.

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Oct 19 2006 15:47

I'm not saying they're opposed, though.

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Oct 19 2006 15:55
revol68 wrote:
well in the realm of the "real" they are not opposed (nothing is), the opposition comes from the formation of the subject, from the production of perspective, from a location within the symbolic realm. Hence I experiance power as both enabling and constraining and how I experiance it in any given moment is reliant on my subjectivity.

Perhaps we should just start cutting & pasting bits of this book at each other to save time.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contingency,_Hegemony,_Universality

You really have gone big-time on the Lacanian stuff, haven't you?

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Oct 19 2006 16:01
revol68 wrote:
I've that ordered, it should arrive tomorrow!

I hope Zizek doesn't embarrass himself with some leninist shite.

It's a cracking read. It goes without saying that Judith Butler kicks Zizek's arse. wink

You have to feel a bit sorry for Laclau, though.

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Oct 19 2006 16:05

Right. I'm off home now. Say what you like about the internet, it beats working. smile

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Oct 19 2006 16:23

Hi

You two. I don't know, I really don't. Will we still be able to get strange pussy under communism? I hope so. Knowing you lot, it’ll be free but of poor quality.

Love

LR

petey
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Oct 19 2006 16:26
revol68 wrote:
we'll have no talk of genetics here, this is a wishy washy social science thread for the discussion of speculative hocus pocus dressed in dialetics and discourses.

sorry.

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Oct 19 2006 18:42
the button wrote:
It goes without saying that Judith Butler kicks Zizek's arse. ;)

Really I was reading Gender Trouble and gave up shortly after her section on Lacan. It was really awful. Really really awful.

I don't really see what she was getting at. Was there a point? She just seemed to be trying to critique almost everything on the basis that x,y&z is infected by phallogocentrism. I mean what does phallogocentrism even mean. Are we simply going to pretend that the phallus has no social significance?

That said zizek isn't that great. Although unlike revol i do quite like his leninist bits. But I'm a platformist so I would wink