capt haddock's blog

sinthomosexuality parallels

When Edelman writes that "the sinthome thus names the element through which we 'take on distinctive shape,' and if, like figure, it assures our access to a 'recognizable' world by allowing us, as Lacan explains, to 'choose something ... instead of nothing' ..." I thought of the phrasing in aha's post from last week, where he paraphrased Heidegger's definition of Being as the reason why there is something instead of nothing.

I think it's interesting

That no one has yet posted about terrorism: the war on terror, state-less criminals/freedom fighters, and the role of international bodies like the International Court of Justice.

Another NYTimes find...

In doing a little online research, I came across this gem: a NYT op-ed piece written by Slavoj Zizek that name-checks Giorgio Agamben's Homo Sacer theorizations.

The article refers to events roughly two weeks prior, when Khalid Shaikh Mohammed confessed to organizing the 9/11 attacks. Here's the original NYT article about that.

Halo and other totalizing digital projects

The intricacies and online infrastructure for Halo are absolutely astounding. A few guys in my suite pointed this out to me, and my thoughts immediately leapt to postmodernism, probably to simulacra and simulation in particular, but to overarching narratives (hmm "incidental commonalities" might be a less loaded phrase) of pm in general.

personal kernels, universal kernels

(this is a long post, but there's a question at the bottom, and I'd appreciate a little clarification/a swift kick re the connections I'm wondering about)

The following quote stuck with me:

Zizek is cool but rude:

to Marxist-feminists, and Deleuze and Guattari:

"Let us take one of the commonplaces of the Marxist-feminist criticism of psychoanalysis, the idea that its insistence on the crucial role of the Oedipus complex and the nuclear-family triangle transforms a historically conditioned form of patriarchal family into a feature of universal human condition: is not this effort to historicize the family triangle precisely an attempt to elude the 'hard kernel' which announces itself through the 'patriarchal family'--the Real of the Law, the rock of castration?"

science, evolution in D&G

Can someone with a background in science weigh in on the claims D&G make about biology and evolution supporting their rhizome theories? This is a last minute grab to insert science into today's in class discussion agenda...

Rhizomes and cyborgs

I've noticed several posts wondering where rhizome theory leaves the individual, or at least where exactly this theory manifests itself in "real world."

In the same way that the Haraway essay answered a lot of my questions about what it means to be an individual agent in postmodernity--how agency and the atomizations etc., of postmodernity are fully compatible and not mutually exclusive--I think that essay has a similar clarifying potential for what a rhizomatic person might look like: a cyborg.

Foucault, Habermas, public and private space

Foucault emphasizes the difference between open, readable sexual discourses, and hidden and coded sexual discourses. This coupled with the ("official") relegation of sexuality to the home/parents' bedroom and to the brothel, away from public spaces, made me think of the last pm theorist we read who was also highly concerned with public and private spaces.

help with consistent definitions in Baudrillard?

Baudrillard helpfully distills the four "successive phases of the image" as follows (letters inserted to facilitate future references):

"the image is the reflection of a profound reality; [a]
-- masks and denatures a profound reality; [b]
-- masks the absence of a profound reality; [c]
-- has no relation to any reality whatsoever: it is its own pure simulacrum" [d] (6).

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