From "Passionate Attachments" to Dis-Identification
By Slavoj Zizek
I want to address the problem of identification by confronting the predominant deconstructionist doxa according to which the main problem with Lacanian theory - which allegedly also limits its political use - is that Lacan elevates the symbolic into a kind of transcendental position of a fixed normative order exempted from the transformative process of historical practice. According to this critique, the symbolic fixes in advance the constraints of compulsory heterosexuality and reduces all resistance to it to imaginary misrecognition. And if one does effectively break up the chains of the symbolic order, one is expelled into the void of psychosis. Since the main proponent of this criticism is Judith Butler, let me focus on her latest book, The Psychic Life of Power .
Butler's, as well as Lacan's, starting point is the old Leftist one -- how is it possible not only to resist effectively, but also to undermine and/or displace the existing socio-symbolic network - the Lacanian "big Other" - which predetermines the only space within which the subject can exist. Significantly, Butler identifies "subject" with the symbolic position occupied within this space, while she reserves the term "psyche" for the larger unity encompassing that in the individual which resists being included in the symbolic space. Butler, of course, is well aware that the site of this resistance cannot be simply and directly identified as the unconscious; the existing order of Power is also supported by unconscious "passionate attachments," attachments publicly non-acknowledged by the subject:
The first paragraph or so of an essay is usually the most important part of the whole essay to get "just right". Not only is it an opportunity to grab the reader's attention, but also a chance to set the agenda for the rest of the essay in terms of tone and content. Strictly speaking, there is no single "right" way to begin an essay — just as it's possible to write essays about countless subjects, so too is it possible to begin an essay in countless ways. However, most good beginnings to essays share certain qualities which, if taken into account, can greatly improve essay intros that may otherwise be lacking. See Step 1 below to get started.
Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life! Before succumbing to the intoxicating warmth of that promise, it’s critical to ask, “Who, exactly, benefits from making work feel like nonwork?” “Why should workers feel as if they aren’t working when they are?” In masking the very exploitative mechanisms of labor that it fuels, DWYL is, in fact, the most perfect ideological tool of capitalism. If we acknowledged all of our work as work, we could set appropriate limits for it, demanding fair compensation and humane schedules that allow for family and leisure time.