Lexicon


 
My discourse proceeds, in the following way: each term is sustained only in its topological relation with the others, and the subject of the cogito is treated in exactly the same way.
 
Jacques Lacan (LX:100)


LX:94 | That We Call Deliberation

When in the mind of man appetites and aversions, hopes and fears, concerning one and the same thing arise alternately, and diverse good and evil consequences of the doing or omitting the thing propounded come successively into our thoughts, so that sometimes we have an appetite to it, sometimes an aversion from it, sometimes hope to be able to do it, sometimes despair or fear to attempt it, the whole sum of desires, aversions, hopes and fears, continued till the thing be either done or thought impossible, is that we call Deliberation. (33)


Source

Hobbes, Thomas. Leviathan.  Ed. Edwin Curley.  Hackett Publishing Company, Inc. 1994.  


Notes

My decision to add this entry was based on, in part, a consideration of the difference between what is called deliberation and what is called thinking:

Thinking is not so much an act as a way of living or dwelling - as we in America would put it, a way of life.  It is a remembering who we are as human beings and where we belong.  It is a gathering and focusing of our whole selves on what lies before us and taking to heart and mind these particular things before us in order to discover in them their essential nature and truth.i

If "the most thought-provoking thing about our thought-provoking age" is "that we are still not thinking," it has always been thus since the early Greeks.  As he [Heidegger] makes clear in this volume [What Is Called Thinking], Heidegger is neither pessimistic nor optimistic about the times in which we live.  It is only that the nature of our technological age requires thinking more than earlier ages, for modern man conceives himself prepared to take dominion over the earth and his capacities for good and ill are vastly augmented.ii

While related, deliberation and thinking are not the same nor do they necessarily occur simultaneously or, for that matter, at all. 

More about learning how to think at Aretaic.

Leviathan is one of my favorite reads and, for what it's worth, I prefer the Edwin Curly edition.  His introduction is thorough and insightful as are his notes found throughout the text.  If you want to read Leviathan, this edition is worth considering.  Plus the size is nice at 8.5 x 5.5 inches - feels good in the hand, familiar.


i Heidegger, Martin. What Is Called Thinking. Trans. J. Glenn Gray.  Harper Perennial, 2004. xi.

ii ibid. ix.

LX:93 | Like Feeling at Home

You ask about the effects of my work on others. If I may wax ironical, that is a masculine question. Men always want to be terribly influential, but I see that as somewhat external. Do I imagine myself being influential? No. I want to understand. And if others understand - in the same sense that I have understood - that gives me a sense of satisfaction, like feeling at home. (6)


Source

Hannah Arendt: The Last Interview and Other Conversations.  Brooklyn: Mellville House Publishing, 2013.


See Also

Lexicon Entries

 

Works and Days

 

Documents

 


Notes

This selection is from the interview "What Remains? The Language Remains": A Conversation with Günter Gaus.  Zur Person, ZDF TV, Germany - October 28, 1964.  Translation by Joan Stambaugh.

See About


LX:92 | Introduces Presence, Hollows Out Absence

There is only one resistance, the resistance of the analyst. The analyst resists when he doesn’t understand what he is dealing with. He doesn’t understand what he is dealing with when he thinks that interpreting is showing the subject that what he desires is this particular sexual object. He’s mistaken. What he here takes to be the objective is just a pure and simple abstraction. he’s the one who’s in a state of inertia and of resistance.

In contrast, what’s important is to teach the subject to name, to articulate, to bring this desire into existence, this desire which, quite literally, is on this side of existence, which is why it insists. If desire doesn’t dare to speak its name, it’s because the subject hasn’t yet caused this name to come forth.

That the subject should come to recognise and to name his desire, that is the efficacious action of analysis. But it isn’t a question of recognising something which would be entirely given, ready to be coapted. In naming it, the subject creates, brings forth, a new presence in the world. He introduces presence as such, and by the same token, hollows out absence as such. It is only at this level that one can conceive of the action of interpretation. (228-9)


Source

Lacan, Jacques. The Seminar of Jacques Lacan Book II: Ego in Freud's Theory and in the Technique of Psychoanalysis, 1954-1955.  Trans. Sylvana Tomaselli.  Ed. Jacques-Alain Miller.  W.W. Norton & Company, Inc. 1991.


Notes

Desire - specifically, the Lacanian concept (désir) - is a key component of my approach to art.  This includes, among other elements, the Session, training and education, and the Aretaic framework. 

In the text of Lacan's Seminar XI (The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis) its translator, Alan Sheridan, provides some useful context for understanding the concept:

The human individual sets out with a particular organism, with certain biological needs, which are satisfied by certain objects.  What effect does the acquisition of language have on these needs?  All speech is demand; it presupposes the Other to whom it is addressed, whose very signifiers it takes over in its formulation.  By the same token, that which comes from the Other is treated not so much as a particular satisfaction of a need, but rather as a response to an appeal, a gift, a token of love.  There is no adequation between the need and the demand that conveys it; indeed, it is the gap between them that constitutes desire, at once particular like the first and absolute like the second.  Desire (fundamentally in the singular) is a perpetual effect of symbolic articulation.  It is not an appetite: it is essentially excentric and insatiable.  That is why Lacan co-ordinates it not with the object that would seem to satisfy it, but with the object that causes it (one is reminded of fetishism). (278-9)


LX:91 | Creative Practices

People know what they do; they frequently know why they do what they do; but what they don't know is what what they do does. (187)


Source

Dreyfus, Hubert, Paul Rabinow. Michel Foucault: Beyond Structuralism and Hermeneutics.  1983. 


Notes

This is a Michel Foucault quote taken from a personal communication referenced in Dreyfus/Rabinow. 

The Session is an element of the Creative Practices framework.


LX:90 | Curiosity

Curiosity is a vice that has been stigmatized in turn by Christianity, by philosophy, and even by a certain conception of science. Curiosity is seen as futility. However, I like the word; it suggests something quite different to me. It evokes “care”; it evokes the care one takes of what exists and what might exist; a sharpened sense of reality, but one that is never immobilized before it; a readiness to find what surrounds us strange and odd; a certain determination to throw off familiar ways of thought and to look at the same things in a different way; a passion for seizing what is happening now and what is disappearing; a lack of respect for the traditional hierarchies of what is important and fundamental.

I dream of a new age of curiosity. We have the technical means; the desire is there; there is an infinity of things to know; the people capable of doing such work exist. So what is our problem? To little: channels of communication that are too narrow, almost monopolistic, inadequate. We mustn’t adopt a protectionist attitude, to stop “bad” information from invading and stifling the “good.” Rather, we must increase the possibility for movement backward and forward. This would not lead, as people often fear, to uniformity and leveling-down, but, on the contrary, to the simultaneous existence and differentiation of these various networks. (325-6)


Source

Foucault, Michel.  Ethics: Subjectivity and Truth.  Ed. Paul Rabinow. The New Press, 1994. 


See Also

Lexicon Entries

The Suicide; The Most Basic Sphere of Concern is Schooling

Works and Days

Documents


Notes


LX:89 | The Suicide

Nowadays not even a suicide kills himself in desperation. Before taking the step he deliberates so long and so carefully that he literally chokes with thought. It is even questionable whether he ought to be called a suicide, since it is really thought which takes his life. He does not die with deliberation but from deliberation. (3)


Source

Kierkegaard, Søren. The Present Age: On the Death of Rebellion.  Trans. Alexander Dru.  Harper Perennial 2010. 


See Also

Lexicon Entries

A Dream of a Kind of Criticism; Curiosity

Works and Days

 

Documents

 


Notes

 


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