A lacanian reply to Marx : the necessity of topology in the formation of the social
[ACCESS RESTRICTED TO THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI AT REQUEST OF AUTHOR.] This study addresses Lacan's comments on Marx. While much has been done towards reading Marx with psychoanalysis generally, little had has been done to unpack the meaning and extent of Lacan's own statements on Marx. For example, while Lacanian Marxists like Slavoj Zizek have wielded Lacan to great effect in a critique of post-structuralism, they have neglected the full meaning and complexity of Lacan's own stance. What is argued thereby is that Zizek not only omits the discrete knowledge within Lacan's commentary, but misses what I describe as a Lacan's theory of the social. On the one hand, it is commonly known in Lacanian thought that discourse is responsible for making the subject. On the other hand, what is less known is that Lacan defined discourse as that which makes a social link which, in contrast with Marxist thought, introduces a certain affect and materialism premised on discourse itself, commonly known, but also for providing the underlying strata of topology (namely, paradox) requisite for making any social link between subjects. Although less commonly known, we can nevertheless gain new insight into Marx. On the one hand, Lacan concedes Marx's underlying structuralism. On the other hand, Marx fails to see the true source of discourse's origins, the real itself, and consequently fails to see the true efficacy of discourse. He fails to see how discourse, although negative, stands as entirely positive and material in its distinctive effects. Discourse negotiates subjects and their inimitable objects of desire in this singularity itself. This is where true production lies; it is that which precedes any social or economic theory, which are otherwise premised on reality. Lacan rejects reality.
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