Keep calm & aim for the head

There is a means of return from fantasy to reality, and that is art. To begin with, the artist is an introvert, almost a neurotic. Constrained by abnormally strong impulses, he desires honor, power, wealth, fame, and the love of women; but he lacks the means to attain these satisfactions, and so, like any other unsatisfied person, turns away from reality and transfers all of his interest, together with his libido, to the wishful fantasies of his imagination, through which he may be carried actually to neurosis. Several factors must coincide if he is not to follow this course to its conclusion. In fact, it is well known how frequently artists suffer partial impairment of their powers through neurotic applications. Their constitution probably includes a strong capacity for sublimation along with a certain degree of laxity in the repressions decisive for a conflict. The artist finds the road back to reality, however, in the following way. He is, of course, not the only one living a life of fantasy. The realm of fantasy is in fact a generally patronized resort, to which every sufferer from disappointments turns for refreshment and consolation. Those who are not artists are extremely limited, however, in their ability to derive pleasure from the wells of fantasy. The ruthlessness of their repressions compels them to make do with whatever meager daydreams they may dare to allow to become conscious. The genuine artist has more at his disposal. In the first place, he knows how to rework his daydreams in such a way that everything too personal, such as others might find offensive, is eliminated, and they become thus generally enjoyable. He knows, also, how to modify them, so that their origin in the forbidden wells is not immediately betrayed. And he possesses, further, the mysterious ability to shape some particular material into a likeness of the model drawn from his fantasy. And finally, he knows how to render so much pleasure through these figurations from his unconscious that repressions are for the moment overcome and dispelled. The one who can achieve all this, thus making it possible for others to derive again refreshment and consolation from those wellsprings of their own unconscious which had become for them inaccessible, gains their thanks and admiration, and he has thus won through his fantasy what he had originally achieved only in his fantasy; namely, honor, power, and the love of women.

Sigmund Freud (via jacqueslacan)

(Source: theunderliner)

(Source: kingsguards)



Click here to see Stephen dedicate the rest of February to African American heritage on last night’s Colbert Report.


The habit of equating one’s age with the apogee of civilization, one’s town with the hub of the universe, one’s horizons with the limits of human awareness, is paradoxically widespread


Interview Part 1 / Part 2

Meaning, mistakes, error: the unveiling of truth

"It may be best … not to bother too much about what one means … when one [writes]

it may be best to be Lacanian and not to bother too much 

[Lacan advises,] one can afford to speak without thought”

J. M. Coetzee (in: Attwell 1992: 30)

[Zizek on the virtue of babbling/full speech:
“the subject only allows itself to get caught in the trap of reason, if it is bribed by some surplus‐pleasure, and it is this surplus that is brought out by the analytic stance.

Cunning of Reason means that the Idea realizes itself in and through the very failure of its realization.

the big Other’s failure breaks through. Error is the partial un‐truth which can be sublated into a subordinate moment of the truth of Totality, while a symptom is a partial break‐through of the repressed truth of the Totality, a truth which belies totality. Lacan here opposes error and mistake (méprise): while, in the Hegelian dialectical process, truth arises through error, in the psychoanalytic process, it arises from a mistake.”]

(via jujutsu-with-zizek)

Criticism of psychoanalysis: when sophistication becomes an excuse to avoid the debate

It is astounding that psychologists and psychiatrists claim that psychoanalysis is a cunning pseudoscience, and Freud himself was a smart but a very disturbed man, and that both must be rejected precisely because of the excessive sophistication. Those fine psychologists and psychiatrists, with their honesty (which, by contrast, stems from their ignorance of suspiciously sophisticated pseudosciences), dismiss psychoanalysis altogether by readind and reproducing the criticism made by early founders of their own science. But they never dare reading contemporary psychoanalysts, except for Freud’s seminal works, not even classic ones. They migh confuse Lacan with a breed of werewolves, those benighted souls. In a way, their argument boils down to “you’re too clever, you must be trying to fool people.”

This argument is preposterous. It sounds exactly like zealot rednecks arguing with secular people. “You think you’re very smart. If you’re so smart, how come you’re not happy? If you’d accept our lord Jesus Christ and the holy Bible, you’d find true happiness.” What kind of argument is that? As if happiness were equivalent to truth. It is stupidity at its finest. Refusal of attempting to understand the other - out of fear of fovever losing the realm of illusion in which is based his and hers happiness.


A cartoon by Sam Gross. A look at more cartoons inspired by surrealism:


A cartoon by Sam Gross. A look at more cartoons inspired by surrealism:

(Source: mashable)

Richard Galliano plays Nino Rota


One of the … strategies of ‘totalitarian’ regimes was to have criminal laws so severe that, if taken literally, everyone would be guilty of something, but then to hold back from their full enforcement. In this way, the regime could appear merciful (‘You see, if we wanted, we could have all of you arrested and condemned, but don’t be afraid, we will be lenient … ‘) and, at the same time, wield a permanent threat over its subjects

s. zizek (via jujutsu-with-zizek)

The true reason behind NSA files about every citizen.