- Lacan.com

The Act and Its Vicissitudes

What is an act in the strict Lacanian sense of the term? Recall C.S. Lewis’ description of his religious choice from his Surprised by Joy—what makes it so irresistibly delicious is the author’s matter-of-fact “English” skeptical style, far from the usual pathetic narratives of the mystical rapture. C.S. Lewis’ description Read more…

By Slavoj Žižek, ago
- Lacan.com

Will You Laugh for Me, Please

On April 8, Charles R. Douglass, the inventor of “canned laughter” – the artificial laughter which accompanies comical moments in TV-series – died at 93 in Templeton, California. In the early 1950s, he developed the idea to enhance or substitute for live audience reaction on television; he then realized this Read more…

By Slavoj Žižek, ago
- Lacan.com

The Thing from Inner Space

JACQUES LACAN DEFINES ART itself with regard to the Thing: in his Seminar on the Ethics of Psychoanalysis, he claims that art as such is always organized around the central Void of the impossible-real Thing – a statement which, perhaps, should be read as a variation on Rilke’s old thesis that Read more…

By Slavoj Žižek, ago
- Lacan.com

Kant and Sade: The ideal couple

Of all the couples in the history of modern thought (Freud and Lacan, Marx and Lenin…), Kant and Sade is perhaps the most problematic: the statement “Kant is Sade” is the “infinite judgement” of modern ethics, positing the sign of equation between the two radical opposites, i.e. asserting that the Read more…

By Slavoj Žižek, ago
- Lacan.com

The Interpassive Subject

[Delivered at Centre Georges Pampidou, Traverses, 1998. Minor editing, headings, etc.] Fetish Between Structure and Humanism According to the classic Althusserian criticism, the Marxist problematic of commodity fetishism relies on the humanist ideological opposition of “human persons” versus “things.” Is it not one of Marx’s standard determinations of fetishism that it Read more…

By Slavoj Žižek, ago