by Feng



“New York Poem,” by National Book Award winner Terrance Hayes, from the November 29, 2010 issue of The New Yorker.

this reminds me of the conversation in class today about wittgenstein’s mistress — the whole human mind is just allusions, cultural references. it is the only way we know anymore how to think.

this, i think, is what salinger knew a long time ago and tina fey knew five years ago and maybe what tiny furniture knew last week.

Everyone is seething in worldlessness. Our “identities” are giant grab bags and we have no Master. Now I am participating in this awareness by pointing at something else: 

…far from liberating us from the guilt-pressure, such dispensing with the Master-Signifier comes at a price, the price signalled by Lacan’s qualification of the superego-command: “Nothing forces anyone to enjoy except the superego. The superego is the imperative of jouissance – Enjoy!” [3] In short, the decline of the Master-Signifier exposes the subject to all the traps and double-talk of the superego: the very injunction to enjoy, i.e., the (often imperceptible) shift from the permission to enjoy to the injunction (obligation) to enjoy sabotages enjoyment, so that, paradoxically, the more one obeys the superego command, the more one is guilty. This same ambiguity affects the very base of a “permissive” and “tolerant” society: “we see from day to day how this tolerance is nothing else than a fanaticism, since it tolerates only its own vacuity.”(LdM-533) And, effectively, every decision, every determinate engagement, is potentially “intolerant” towards all others… There are only a couple of qualifications to be added to this Badiou’s thesis. First, insofar as world as such is sustained by a “point,” is a point-less, atonal, world not a name for worldlessness? Badiou himself recently claimed that our time is devoid of world…