The Cunning of Reason:
Lacan as Reader of Hegel
[excerpt]

 

 

Slavoj Zizek

 

To resume again...

Jacques Lacan's Anxiety (II)
J
- A MILLER

The Names-of-the-Father
J
- A MILLER

The Formulas of
L'Étourdit
A
LAIN BADIOU

On Giorgio Agamben's
Profanations
M
EHDI BELHAJ
KACEM

The Fundamental Perversion
S
LAVOJ ZIZEK

Lacan
as Reader of Hegel
S
LAVOJ ZIZEK

1978-2000
R
OBERT GOBER

Catherine Opie
C
ATHY LEBOWITZ
interviews
JOSEFINA AYERZA

blake31 image

 

[...]

So when, in his rapport de Rome, Lacan refers to Hegel's "Absolute Knowing," one should read closely his indications of how he conceives this identification of the analyst with the Hegelian master, and not succumb to the temptation of quickly retranslating the "Absolute Knowing" into the accomplished symbolization. For Lacan, the analyst stands for the Hegelian master, embodiment of "Absolute Knowing," insofar as he renounces all enforcing (forçage) of reality and, fully aware that the actual is in already itself rational, adopt the stance of a passive observer who does not intervene directly into the content, but merely manipulates the scene so that the content destroys itself, confronted with its own inconsistencies - this is how one should read Lacan's precise indication that Hegel's work is "precisely what we need to confer a meaning on so-called analytic neutrality other than that the analyst is simply in a stupor" - it is this neutrality which keeps the analyst "on the path of non action."

Cunning is something other than trickery. The most open activity is the greatest cunning (the other must be taken in its truth). In other words, with his openness, a man exposes the other in himself, he makes him appear as he is in and for himself, and thereby does away with himself. Cunning is the great art of inducing others to be as they are in and for themselves, and to bring this out to the light of consciousness. Although others are in the right, they do not know how to defend it by means of speech. Muteness is bad, mean cunning. Consequently, a true master /Meister/ is at bottom only he who can provoke the other to transform himself through his act.

[...]



Art: Blake Rayne - Untitled 29 (for Julia Butterfly Hill) - oil and collage on canvas, 2006
courtesy of the Miguel Abreu Gallery.

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