From Psycho to Social…

September 12, 2008

I found that reference on Google books:

Preface, page lxxii

And there’s a General Membership Meeting of the Union next Thursday, so me and (cough cough) The Thing are unable to attend a meeting of the reading group. Can everyone do Friday at the same time?


One Response to “From Psycho to Social…”

  1. The Universal Singular said

    I remember the context in which you were trying to find that quote… but was there something else you were trying to add?
    Isn’t “depriving them of the support in the ‘big Other'” just another way of saying ideological critique?

    …I was thinking last night about four possible positions of belief:

    1) believing in the big Other in public, but silently renouncing it in private.

    2) believing in the big Other in private, but pretending not to believe in public (in other words, because you seriously believe in private, but you think that the big Other doesn’t want you to believe – secular society and so forth – you present the image of non-belief).

    3) Total belief, in public and in private

    4) True atheism.

    With 1) and 2), I can see the level of inherent transgression involved in belief, which allows the individual to be part of the community: not taking the official ideology seriously (whether in public or in private) but on some level still believing in the big Other in order to guarantee symbolic consistency.

    With 3) we have a situation of a completely odd individual, who takes the official ideology TOO seriously, like the person who cannot commit – who takes the wedding vows too seriously and therefore destroys the whole symbolic efficiency (overidentification).

    4) I guess would be passing through the fantasy, subjective destitution and so on…

    I wonder if there is a link between 3) and 4). If they are both ways of depriving people of the support in the big Other, or if one has more validity than the other.

    I think that the problem with overidentification is that it’s ultimately too perverse (which I think was the problem with Stalinism).

    With 4), I think we get into the territory of ‘negation of negation’, self-relating negativity… would this mean identifying with the real Real as inherent impossibility? Effectively realizing that I don’t exist (in the same way that ‘society doesn’t exist).

    So… how does one go about depriving people of support in the big Other, other than through ideological critique ?

    Is this what the politics of subtraction means? Starting from the Void… not from the position of purification (purifying the Real), which is what I think is perverse about Stalinism, but repeating Lenin “in the guise of the ‘politics of subtraction'” rather than purification…?

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