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The Body and its Discontents (the body that arrived late in Lacan)

Lecturer: Robyn Adler

Originally Taught: Winter School 2022

In Joyce le Sinthome, Lacan states “de LOM il a un corps”, of LOM he has a body.  The ‘de’ in this enigmatic enunciation is an expression that we will examine with the later Lacan.  The body that one has, in a partitive sense, departs from the subject of the signifier and from the body of the individual thought to possess their own image.  The symbolic holds to the body as an incorporated structure that resists representation.  The symptom as an opaque place, a foreign body in the subject, is on the side of the absolutely singular where non-negativisable jouissance remains to be taken up as know-how, with use value.  Via a detour that traverses the feminine side of the table of sexuation, a world of discourse is punctuated by the infinite opening a space of radical politics such that the subject, ceasing to be subjected, is endowed with authority that is on the side of the body, not on the side of institutions.  By subtracting from the body of the One, of biopolitics, one by one, homonymic ties are replaced with homophonic resonances in a kind of ‘bondage up yours’ to the Enlightenment's autonomous individual cleansed of the pathological and founds, instead, a politics of dispossession such that the unconscious is politics.  Here a logic of the collective is an event that is always already here.

  1. Introduction: from the body of the imaginary to the body of LOM.
  • Reading: Heidegger, ‘The Age of the World Picture’;  Lacan, ‘Joyce le Sinthome’ (II).
  1. The signifer takes body: Stoic incorporeal/A body not-without organs.
  • Reading: Lacan, ‘Radiophonie’.
  1. Formulae of Sexuation
  • Reading: Lacan, Seminar XX, Encore; Copjec, ‘Sex and the Euthanasia of Reason’.
  1. Homonymy/homophony; sounding boards/tuning forks
  • Lacan, ‘La Troisième’; Freud & Breuer, ‘Studies in Hysteria’;  Freud, ‘Inhibitions, Symptoms and Anxiety’.
  1. Exousia as authority, one by one/Collective logic.
  • Lacan, ‘Logical Time and the Assertion of Anticipated Certainty’.

Readings are indicative of the paths we will traverse and by no means expected reading.  Shorter readings/extracts will be provided.