and the Event
of the Body
Gender and Sexuation
The Great Divide
The Absence of
the 20th Century
Il n'y a pas de
How is it that Miss Sweden on the cover of lacanian ink 18, and Ms. Guatemala on the back cover spell out the non-rapport?
Miss Sweden and Miss Guatemala embody the line of sight that defines desire as positioning on behalf of the place that invests them. The line of sight focuses on an image that is a mystery, thus an obscure object, still set out to conquer a universal stance. Whether you like her or not Miss Universe will hold the scepter which represents the desire of all men. Yet after a year a new flower will bloom, rekindling the desire of all men, for a whole new year. And this is the fate of the contemporary Aphrodite. Will she ever be the One?
Between man and woman there is no instinctual rapport because sexuality is marked by the signifier. Thus an Other sits between them. And there is no reciprocity because the Other - the symbolic order - is asymmetric: there is no signifier for the woman...only one signifier, the phallus, rules over the rapport of the sexes. "The sexual rapport cannot be written."
For Lacan "The most naked rivalry between men and woman is eternal." Love then is the illusion for the absence of harmonic rapport between the sexes. Man does not enjoy the body of the woman, only the body part - sexual drives go solely towards the partial object. With Jacques-Alain Miller, "body parts can certainly be represented, beside with other natural elements, yet they account for signifiers. They are imaginary signifiers whose matter is taken from the image. When we say 'the living body,' we leave aside both the symbolized body and the body image. The body affected by jouissance is neither imaginary nor symbolic, but a living one." Life is a condition of jouissance. "Life overflows the body. What obliges you to attest there isn't jouissance unless life appears under the form of a living body."
There is therefore no sexual rapport between two subjects, but only between two subjects and an object - a partial object. From the side of the man the objet a is in place of the missing partner, and this brings up the matheme of the fantasme (
S <> a); in other words woman does not exist, for the man, as a real subject; she only exists as an object in the fantasme - the cause of his desire. "Woman serves a function in the sexual rapport only qua mother."
Richard Klein discusses gender, "The fundamental trauma is no longer castration which the phallus includes. Traumatic is the sexual non-rapport in that the sexual relation is a hole in the real. It is troumatique. Nothing like a hole to indicate that something that does not exist can still operate."
With Svolos the non-rapport issue addresses asymmetry in the direction of the cure - when it comes to psychosis, the cure should take on the use of pills, on the use of words?
In "The Absence of the 20th Century," the non-rapport already insinuated in the title, Gérard Wajcman discusses the art of Jochen Gerz. "After all, Adorno conceivably fell shy when he declared the impossibility of poetry in the aftermath of Auschwitz (or, as I suggested in the beginning, it may be peremptory to dissociate art and poetry in this respect)."
As something tied to the real, sex opposes sense, to the point, with Slavoj Zizek, where woman is one of the names of God - there is no sexual rapport, there is no religious rapport. In his Il n'y a pas de rapport sexuel, "the story of (Adam's) Fall is evidently the story of how the human animal contracted the excess of Life which makes him/her human - 'Paradise' is the name for the life delivered of the burden of this disturbing excess."
Art: Martin Larralde, Untitled, oil on linen, 2000
courtesy Annina Nosei Gallery, NY
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