EVENTS

Special events organized by the Lacanian Compass.

"The Culture of Narcissism"
A special video seminar by Fabian Fajnwaks
June 11, 2017 @11am EST

This video seminar will be broadcast online through Webex. Register with Juan Felipe Arango by emailing lacaniancompassvideo@gmail.com by June 9th. Login instructions will be sent out in advance to those who have registered. The event is free and open to all.

In The Culture of Narcissism, Christopher Lasch explores the ego's function in the era of declining ideals and increasing weakness of social ties. Published in 1979, at the end of what Tom Wolfe called the "me decade," this book remains an absolutely contemporary work. Lasch explores familial (even Oedipal) and social consequences of these declining ideals or as we could translate in Lacanian terms as the declining father imago.

It is worth examining this social research from the perspective of the strengthening of the ego and the Borrromean solutions each parlêtre tries to arrange. 




Gustavo Dessal
On Some Almost Unnoticeable Ways of Being Crazy

On the 19th of October 2016, at the invitation of Maria Cristina Aguirre and the NYFLAG (New York Freud Lacan Analytic Group), Gustavo Dessal delivered a presentation entitled: On Some Almost Unnoticeable Ways of Being Crazy. NYFLAG wishes to thank Gustavo Dessal for his exceptional presentation.

Taking as his point of departure the notion of ordinary psychosis, Dessal constructed his discourse around the three proper names that punctuate Lacan's teaching on psychosis: Aimée, Schreber and Joyce. Leaving the case Aimée aside, for lack of time, Dessal sketched first what Schreber and Joyce taught Lacan about psychosis. Schreber, as the letter S of his name suggests, stands on the side of the symbolic, and Joyce, with the J, on the one of jouissance. Schreber, indeed, gave to Lacan a way to understand psychosis by means of the Symbolic, while Joyce forced Lacan to go beyond it, into jouissance and the real. The two paradigms, nonetheless, should not be opposed, or played against one another, but seen as complementary argued Dessal.

Schreber was necessary to create one of the most important lacanian concepts: the Name of the Father, and the subjective consequence when it is inefficient: foreclosure. In Schreber's paradigm, psychosis is conceived of as a disorder of the symbolic, a break down in the symbolic chain that affects the signified and the subject. The foreclosure eliminates both, the signified and the subject. These two aspects that Lacan points out as the effect of foreclosure are immediate. The first one is the emptiness of signification (which could be so radical that the subject experiences it as something dense and full). The second is named the death of the subject, and is related to the moment when the signifier breaks free from the chain and returns in the real. 

Joyce leads to another paradigm, a paradigm that underlines the possibility that the failure of the Name of the Father can be repaired even before the triggering of psychosis. A subject can supplement the foreclosure of the Name of the Father through a symptom that works to prevent the imaginary from getting loose from the two other registers. In this sense, the concept of symptom, remarked Dessal, becomes larger than the concept of the Name of the Father. Even in Seminar III On Psychosis, Lacan had an idea of this problem when he talked about certain schizophrenic patients who were able to have a functional life using the resources of an imaginary identification; people who mimic and behave by playing roles. But this resource is fragile and susceptible to collapse.

What is called the Sinthome is a construction with a different consistency. It may be strong enough to contain the flood of jouissance. And it is able to stabilize the subject. On the one hand, we have a delusional metaphor, which is able to stabilize a psychosis in a temporary way after it has been triggered. However this stabilization is produced at the level of the signified. On the other hand, we have the Sinthome that can fix something at the level of jouissance. The Sinthome operates in such ways, in some cases, that the triggering does not even take place. The delusional metaphor is a staple applied at the level of the imaginary and signification, while the Sinthome is a quilting point for jouissance. The delusional metaphor means something, while the Sinthome does not mean anything at all. It works as a Name of the Father. 

What we call ordinary psychosis had a precedent, remarked Dessal, in the category of the so-called normalized psychosis studied by Pinel, like lucid madness, or partial madness that are almost invisible. And it is from the paradigm of Joyce that we can recapture those kinds of psychosis. Some people show symptoms that look like neurotics symptoms but that mean something else. There is the madness of everybody. But there is another madness. It is important to detect an ordinary psychosis because it has a great influence on the direction of the treatment. What we call negative therapeutic reaction for example can result from a false diagnosis. One has to be able to perceive the foreclosure without its classical symptoms. When a patient is supposed to speak about his Oedipus complex, maybe there is none. When a patient talks about his rituals, those rituals might not be obsessive.

To conclude his presentation, Dessal made a series of clinical remarks and case vignettes about the treatment of ordinary psychosis. First, unlike classical psychosis, where the psychotic break is easily localizable, it is very hard to find it in ordinary psychosis. Patients can experience inner states that can be grouped under the label of strangeness, but not as psychotic breakdown. Second, those patients, for the most part, lack a history, and proper narrative structures about their past. They present frozen significations and often don't commit to what they say about themselves. Third, many of them show a peculiar relationship to sexual life. Although psychoanalysis doesn't know anything about sexuality, it seems that they show clear sign of a weak sexual identity. In some cases, some perverse behaviors can be identified as means to prevent the threat of an invading intrusion for example. Fourth, those patients have difficulties with the social bond. They show signs of extreme shyness or, on the contrary, of helplessness in front of the other’s aggressiveness. 

Some patients even express in very spontaneous ways, a family romance in which repression and censorship is almost nonexistent. Idea about incest can be conscious and won't produce subjective division or anxiety. This is why in ordinary psychosis a very colorful Oedipus complex can work as a supplementary Name of the father. Nonetheless, underlined Dessal, the delusional core is never missing, although never easy to find. It is generally consciously or unconsciously hidden. Psychotics are very cunning. Psychotics can give or keep information to themselves. Sometimes there are only allusions or ellipses of speech. But an analyst should never force them to tell their secrets, because to keep it is already a way to deal with foreclosure. The patient uses a form of ideology to stand apart from his own enunciation. For many ordinary psychotics, the body is a sort of a sacred temple that has to be protected. This is the reason why they are most of the time against medication. They may prefer to use heroin instead of taking psychotropic medication. The question thus is: how to help the psychotic to deal with the edge of the real, the liquidness of his life? 

Never before our native helplessness has been more exposed than in the present, concluded Dessal.

 A report by Frédéric-Charles Baitinger
New York Freud Lacan Analytic Group


'Anything Goes: The Imperatives of Jouissance in a Society of Permissiveness'
MArch 18, 2016

Lecture by Marie-Helene Brousse in conjunction with Clinical Study Days 9.


'Was Joyce Mad?'
November 4, 2015

Lecture by psychoanalyst, Adrian Price, translator of Seminar XXIII, soon to be published by Polity. 

Lacan, Seminar XXIII Le Sinthome, Chapter V (February 10, 1976) "Was Joyce Mad?"

 


NGO CSW Forum Parallel Event
MArch 19, 2015


THE LACANIAN BODY
MARCH 21, 2015


THE REAL POLITICS OF THE BODY
NOVEMBER 22, 2014

 Guest Speaker: Prof. Thomas Svolos, Creighton University, Omaha 

·  The Body Politic

·  More, More, More Addiction

·  The Psychoanalytic Soapbox

The 21st century body is no longer the body of a century or a half century ago--something has changed in the ways in which people relate to or experience their bodies today and the ways they describe this to those around them, including a psychoanalyst. 

 For this Seminar, I want to say something about the Lacanian approach to the body.  This will be grounded in some classical notions of the body as imaginary body and even the symbolic body, but with a focus more on the body as real, as an event of the real.  Lacan, famously known for his linguistic formulations about the unconscious as structured like a language, left us, in his final years, with a novel set of formulations that perhaps seemed bizarre at the time, but, in retrospect, were prescient mappings of our world now.  

The symptom is no longer a metaphor, but a body event.  The real is somehow more present, including in its reverberations on the body.  

Drawing from recent work of Jacques-Alain Miller, we will explore how psychoanalysis may change to respond to this new world of the body.  

Prof. Thomas Svolos is a psychoanalyst and psychiatrist practicing in Omaha, Nebraska. He is a member of the New Lacanian School (NLS) and World Association of Psychoanalysis (WAP). He is also Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry in the Creighton University School of Medicine. His publications have appeared in nine languages.


CULTURE & PSYCHOANALYSIS


Culture & Psychoanalysis is an ongoing series of seminars devoted to contemporary art and culture from the perspective of Lacanian psychoanalysis. The program began in August 2011 with a seminar devoted to the Alexander McQueen exhibition at the MET. The presentations take place several times a year, responding to current political and cultural events. Artists, writers, filmmakers, and psychoanalysts are invited to present their work as a means to further develop psychoanalytic theory in the hypermodern era. Jacques Lacan proposed that the artist always precedes the analyst, in his “knowledge” of the unconscious.   


Flat Surface Painting and the Plane of Alterity A lecture in two parts by Adrian Price  in celebration of the painting “Squint (19)” by Michael Simpson Saturday, October 22, 2016, from 10 am to 3 pm The first lecture, “Figure, ground, and screen”, will draw on Frank Stella’s Aluminum series and Bernd & Hilla Becher’s photographic project to suggest that the shaped frame and the blank ground constitute different ways of problematizing the edge in such a way as to subvert visual cognition. The second lecture, “An oblique heresy”, will examine the dialectic between pictorial space and the screen of the Other that facilitates the return movement of the gaze-object as conceptualized by Jacques Lacan. Further to performing within this pictorial discipline, Michael Simpson's recent “Squint” paintings offer a wry and scintillating acknowledgment of its parameters, together with a critique of normalizing conventions. 

Flat Surface Painting and the Plane of Alterity

A lecture in two parts by Adrian Price 
in celebration of the painting “Squint (19)” by Michael Simpson

Saturday, October 22, 2016, from 10 am to 3 pm

The first lecture, “Figure, ground, and screen”, will draw on Frank Stella’s Aluminum series and Bernd & Hilla Becher’s photographic project to suggest that the shaped frame and the blank ground constitute different ways of problematizing the edge in such a way as to subvert visual cognition. The second lecture, “An oblique heresy”, will examine the dialectic between pictorial space and the screen of the Other that facilitates the return movement of the gaze-object as conceptualized by Jacques Lacan. Further to performing within this pictorial discipline, Michael Simpson's recent “Squint” paintings offer a wry and scintillating acknowledgment of its parameters, together with a critique of normalizing conventions. 


Thaw! The last word in stolentelling!* Wednesday, January 27, 2016 at CUNY Grad Center, French Dept. Guest Speaker, Kenneth Goldsmith James Joyce famously refused psychoanalysis. In Seminar XXIII, Le Sinthome, Lacan proposed that Joyce canceled his subscription to the unconscious. The legacy of his writing continues to provoke our understanding of language, the Other and the body.  Lacan concluded that Joyce’s work achieved the best a psychoanalysis has to offer. Kenneth Goldsmith’s writing has been called "some of the most exhaustive and beautiful collage work yet produced in poetry".  Having recently published Uncreative Writing: Managing Language in the Digital Age, Goldsmith disarrays the relationship between language, writing and the Other in the hypermodern era. New York Freud Lacan Analytic Group (NYFLAG) invites you to a Culture & Psychoanalysis seminar with Kenneth Goldsmith, presenting a reading and discussion of his work.

Thaw! The last word in stolentelling!*
Wednesday, January 27, 2016 at CUNY Grad Center, French Dept.
Guest Speaker, Kenneth Goldsmith

James Joyce famously refused psychoanalysis. In Seminar XXIII, Le Sinthome, Lacan proposed that Joyce canceled his subscription to the unconscious. The legacy of his writing continues to provoke our understanding of language, the Other and the body.  Lacan concluded that Joyce’s work achieved the best a psychoanalysis has to offer.

Kenneth Goldsmith’s writing has been called "some of the most exhaustive and beautiful collage work yet produced in poetry".  Having recently published Uncreative Writing: Managing Language in the Digital Age, Goldsmith disarrays the relationship between language, writing and the Other in the hypermodern era.

New York Freud Lacan Analytic Group (NYFLAG) invites you to a Culture & Psychoanalysis seminar with Kenneth Goldsmith, presenting a reading and discussion of his work.


“OH MY GOD(s)!: Religions: Laughing Under Control or Nothing Funny Here” by Marie-Hélène Brousse Marie-Hélène Brousse is a practicing psychoanalyst in Paris, France and Associate Professor of the Universite Paris 8. She is Analyst Member of the School (AME) and Analyst of the School (AE) of the Ecole de la Cause Freudienne, of the New Lacanian School and of the World Association of Psychoanalysis (WAP). She is the Editor-in-Chief of La Cause du Desir and the incoming Editor-in-Chief of the Lacanian Review: Hurly-Burly. New York City, April 22, 2015, Barnard College. On a beautiful spring evening in New York City, at Barnard College, thanks to Professor Maire Jaanus, we attended an outstanding lecture by the French psychoanalyst, Professor Marie-Hélène Brousse, entitled “OH MY GOD(s)!: Religions: Laughing Under Control or Nothing Funny Here.” Motivated by both the recent tragic events in Paris, which began with the attack on Charlie Hebdo, and the current buzz around religion in the U.S. media surrounding the new law that was passed in the state of Indiana called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), Brousse, with extreme precision and a close reading of Jacques Lacan’s teaching, illuminated the difference between religion and God in the monotheistic tradition, as well as the non-relation between monotheistic religion and laughter. Brousse compared the different positions in France and the USA, emphasizing how she noticed the deep religiosity and decided diversity that still exists in the USA, and how it is linked with identity politics. She reminded us that in France, since the Third Republic, religious orientations and the public reached a compromise through a master signifier: secularism. Everyone has the right to practice their own religion in private spaces and churches, but public space is free of religion. Working with Lacan’s Seminar VII: The Ethics of Psychoanalysis, in her analysis of Umberto Eco’s novel, The Name of the Rose, and the subsequent film adaptation by director Jean-Jacques Annaud, as well as the terrorist declarations by the attackers of Charlie Hebdo, Brousse questioned why rejections of laughter and humor were linked to the accusation of blasphemy. She posited that religion and God are not the same thing, they are two different concepts, and have different realities. God is a signifier; religion is a discourse, a form of the discourse of the master. As she pointed out, Freud’s approach to the analysis of religion was to link it with obsessional neurosis, as in both we find rituals that delimit a central void that organizes the symbolic function. Lacan’s approach was more paradoxical because he examined religion as sublimation, sublimation taken from the model of theater. This model enables us to identify the limits or barriers that sublimation allows us to overcome, precisely the barriers that are maintained by religion. In tragedy the barriers that are crossed are those of fear and pity, whereas in comedy these barriers are shame and modesty. Therefore tragedy appeals to transcendence and comedy maintains us in immanence. As Lacan shows us in Seminar II: The Ego in Freud’s Theory and in the Technique of Psychoanalysis, comedy is centered on a hidden signifier. It implies the recognition of a failure of desire. In Seminar VII, Lacan says that what makes us laugh is life escaping the barriers of the signifier. The mode of enjoyment of monotheist religionsis in harmony with tragedy and rejects comedy. They stay on the side of the signifier as mortification and tend to reduce the law to the superego. Brousse’s second important point had to do with how psychoanalysis deals with God. It is very clear that God exists, free association shows it every day. In Seminar XX: Encore, Lacan says that in religion they exorcize the devil, but in analysis we exorcize the good old God. The consequence of this exorcism in analysis is a modification, an adjustment of the symbolic order through the use of the object of jouissance. In analysis, we know that the objects a command the subject. Psychoanalysis makes clear that the Other exists. What psychoanalysis demonstrates is that it is a semblant, which doesn’t mean it is false and even less that it doesn’t exist. In Seminar XX: Encore Lacan introduces, in an unexpected way, the position of the analyst in relation to God and Religion: “Exorcize the good old God” How? Instead of reinforcing the Other in both its modalities, Ego Ideal and Superego, the analyst puts the object a in the position of the agent commanding the subject; and this is the principle of comedy. To conclude, in an analysis God, exorcized, shows both his existence and his materiality, the one of language and speech. God is not an illusion, it’s the name of the frightening real power of the symbolic.  Therefore in psychoanalysis the goal is to separate fiction from belief or the truth in fictions from belief.  It is difficult to convey in these few paragraphs the meticulous construction made by Brousse, the clarity and finesse of her thinking, and capacity to read and transmit the teaching of Jacques Lacan by bringing it to a timely debate in our hypermodern era. With her generous authorization the lecture will soon be published in LCExpress. We would like to express our deepest gratitude to Marie-Hélène Brousse for dedicating her time in order to share this very new research with us.  Maria Cristina Aguirre  Reviewed by Nancy Gillespie

“OH MY GOD(s)!: Religions: Laughing Under Control or Nothing Funny Here” by Marie-Hélène Brousse

Marie-Hélène Brousse is a practicing psychoanalyst in Paris, France and Associate Professor of the Universite Paris 8. She is Analyst Member of the School (AME) and Analyst of the School (AE) of the Ecole de la Cause Freudienne, of the New Lacanian School and of the World Association of Psychoanalysis (WAP). She is the Editor-in-Chief of La Cause du Desir and the incoming Editor-in-Chief of the Lacanian Review: Hurly-Burly.

New York City, April 22, 2015, Barnard College.

On a beautiful spring evening in New York City, at Barnard College, thanks to Professor Maire Jaanus, we attended an outstanding lecture by the French psychoanalyst, Professor Marie-Hélène Brousse, entitled “OH MY GOD(s)!: Religions: Laughing Under Control or Nothing Funny Here.”

Motivated by both the recent tragic events in Paris, which began with the attack on Charlie Hebdo, and the current buzz around religion in the U.S. media surrounding the new law that was passed in the state of Indiana called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), Brousse, with extreme precision and a close reading of Jacques Lacan’s teaching, illuminated the difference between religion and God in the monotheistic tradition, as well as the non-relation between monotheistic religion and laughter.

Brousse compared the different positions in France and the USA, emphasizing how she noticed the deep religiosity and decided diversity that still exists in the USA, and how it is linked with identity politics. She reminded us that in France, since the Third Republic, religious orientations and the public reached a compromise through a master signifier: secularism. Everyone has the right to practice their own religion in private spaces and churches, but public space is free of religion.

Working with Lacan’s Seminar VII: The Ethics of Psychoanalysis, in her analysis of Umberto Eco’s novel, The Name of the Rose, and the subsequent film adaptation by director Jean-Jacques Annaud, as well as the terrorist declarations by the attackers of Charlie Hebdo, Brousse questioned why rejections of laughter and humor were linked to the accusation of blasphemy. She posited that religion and God are not the same thing, they are two different concepts, and have different realities. God is a signifier; religion is a discourse, a form of the discourse of the master.

As she pointed out, Freud’s approach to the analysis of religion was to link it with obsessional neurosis, as in both we find rituals that delimit a central void that organizes the symbolic function. Lacan’s approach was more paradoxical because he examined religion as sublimation, sublimation taken from the model of theater. This model enables us to identify the limits or barriers that sublimation allows us to overcome, precisely the barriers that are maintained by religion. In tragedy the barriers that are crossed are those of fear and pity, whereas in comedy these barriers are shame and modesty. Therefore tragedy appeals to transcendence and comedy maintains us in immanence.

As Lacan shows us in Seminar II: The Ego in Freud’s Theory and in the Technique of Psychoanalysis, comedy is centered on a hidden signifier. It implies the recognition of a failure of desire. In Seminar VII, Lacan says that what makes us laugh is life escaping the barriers of the signifier. The mode of enjoyment of monotheist religionsis in harmony with tragedy and rejects comedy. They stay on the side of the signifier as mortification and tend to reduce the law to the superego.

Brousse’s second important point had to do with how psychoanalysis deals with God. It is very clear that God exists, free association shows it every day. In Seminar XX: Encore, Lacan says that in religion they exorcize the devil, but in analysis we exorcize the good old God. The consequence of this exorcism in analysis is a modification, an adjustment of the symbolic order through the use of the object of jouissance. In analysis, we know that the objects a command the subject. Psychoanalysis makes clear that the Other exists. What psychoanalysis demonstrates is that it is a semblant, which doesn’t mean it is false and even less that it doesn’t exist.

In Seminar XX: Encore Lacan introduces, in an unexpected way, the position of the analyst in relation to God and Religion: “Exorcize the good old God” How? Instead of reinforcing the Other in both its modalities, Ego Ideal and Superego, the analyst puts the object a in the position of the agent commanding the subject; and this is the principle of comedy.

To conclude, in an analysis God, exorcized, shows both his existence and his materiality, the one of language and speech. God is not an illusion, it’s the name of the frightening real power of the symbolic.  Therefore in psychoanalysis the goal is to separate fiction from belief or the truth in fictions from belief. 

It is difficult to convey in these few paragraphs the meticulous construction made by Brousse, the clarity and finesse of her thinking, and capacity to read and transmit the teaching of Jacques Lacan by bringing it to a timely debate in our hypermodern era. With her generous authorization the lecture will soon be published in LCExpress.

We would like to express our deepest gratitude to Marie-Hélène Brousse for dedicating her time in order to share this very new research with us. 

Maria Cristina Aguirre 

Reviewed by Nancy Gillespie


Scarjo: The Woman as Speculative Fiction: Three recent films with Scarlett Johansson October 8, 2014 at CUNY Graduate Center Presentations by Robert Buck, Nancy Gillespie, and Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff On the occasion of three recent films starring Scarlett Johansson, Culture & Psychoanalysis will host a discussion to explore cinematic representations of The Woman in 21st Century speculative fiction.  The consecutive release of "Her", "Under the Skin", and "Lucy" presents an opportunity to examine one actress as fictions of The Woman in the hypermodern era: alternately disembodied, alien, and digital. Presentations available in LCExpress V3.1.

Scarjo: The Woman as Speculative Fiction: Three recent films with Scarlett Johansson
October 8, 2014 at CUNY Graduate Center
Presentations by Robert Buck, Nancy Gillespie, and Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff

On the occasion of three recent films starring Scarlett Johansson, Culture & Psychoanalysis will host a discussion to explore cinematic representations of The Woman in 21st Century speculative fiction.  The consecutive release of "Her", "Under the Skin", and "Lucy" presents an opportunity to examine one actress as fictions of The Woman in the hypermodern era: alternately disembodied, alien, and digital.

Presentations available in LCExpress V3.1.


New Work by Robert Buck: "At the end of the day…" / The Letter! The Litter! / Figure of Speech July 16, 2014 at CRG Gallery Artist presentation by Robert Buck / Discussion by Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff Aware of obstacles and repetition, Buck’s question was how to handle the death drive as it operates in hypermodernity, and via himself, as subject. Each series formally relies on the grid, relative to its current guise in Photoshop and GPS satellites, but only in order to disturb it. The painting, at the end of the day…(Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown, CT, December 14, 2012), rekindles a recent headline-news event, an inexplicable, yet no longer uncommon, random act of violence. A single image of what happened in the aftermath of the event, salvaged from scores of images dumped on the inter-net, is cropped, flipped, inverted, multiplied, and printed on canvas.  At first glance the image-event lattice is likely to be apperceived as wallpaper, fabric, or décor; but look again, and the trellis of recurring images isn’t the trauma but a screen against it. Against this incessant backdrop, it’s not easy to know what is “natural” and what is not.

New Work by Robert Buck: "At the end of the day…" / The Letter! The Litter! / Figure of Speech
July 16, 2014 at CRG Gallery
Artist presentation by Robert Buck / Discussion by Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff

Aware of obstacles and repetition, Buck’s question was how to handle the death drive as it operates in hypermodernity, and via himself, as subject. Each series formally relies on the grid, relative to its current guise in Photoshop and GPS satellites, but only in order to disturb it.

The painting, at the end of the day…(Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown, CT, December 14, 2012), rekindles a recent headline-news event, an inexplicable, yet no longer uncommon, random act of violence. A single image of what happened in the aftermath of the event, salvaged from scores of images dumped on the inter-net, is cropped, flipped, inverted, multiplied, and printed on canvas.  At first glance the image-event lattice is likely to be apperceived as wallpaper, fabric, or décor; but look again, and the trellis of recurring images isn’t the trauma but a screen against it. Against this incessant backdrop, it’s not easy to know what is “natural” and what is not.


The Zombie Epidemic: A Hypermodern Version of the Apocalypse September 25, 2013, at the New School Guest speaker, Jorge Assef / Discussion by Robert Buck & Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff Jorge Assef, psychoanalyst and head of Cinema and Psychoanalysis at the University of Cordoba, Argentina, will present a topic ubiquitous in current American popular culture: the zombie.  The seminar will focus on the zombie's perpetuation into the hypermodern era (from "Night of the Living Dead", 1968, through the current "World War Z" and the AMC TV series "The Walking Dead"), examining its manifestations as pandemic and apocalyptic from a psychoanalytic orientation. In light of the theme of upcoming IX Congress of the WAP, "A Great Disorder in the Real, in the 21st Century", the zombie reveals that death itself has been contaminated by the laws of nature. Presentation available in LCExpress V2.7.

The Zombie Epidemic: A Hypermodern Version of the Apocalypse
September 25, 2013, at the New School
Guest speaker, Jorge Assef / Discussion by Robert Buck & Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff

Jorge Assef, psychoanalyst and head of Cinema and Psychoanalysis at the University of Cordoba, Argentina, will present a topic ubiquitous in current American popular culture: the zombie.  The seminar will focus on the zombie's perpetuation into the hypermodern era (from "Night of the Living Dead", 1968, through the current "World War Z" and the AMC TV series "The Walking Dead"), examining its manifestations as pandemic and apocalyptic from a psychoanalytic orientation. In light of the theme of upcoming IX Congress of the WAP, "A Great Disorder in the Real, in the 21st Century", the zombie reveals that death itself has been contaminated by the laws of nature.

Presentation available in LCExpress V2.7.


“We Need to Talk About Kevin”: Inconsistency and the Act June 20, 2012 at Barnard College Presentation by Dinorah Otero / Discussion by Robert Buck & Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff The narrative of the 2011 film, "We Need to Talk about Kevin", winds around a mother, her son, and a fictitious, but all too familiar small-town-America high school massacre. Considering the waning status of the symbolic order, how can we read the consummate act of the film? Does it indicate falling from the scene or moving onto the stage? Where do we locate this act in the context of tenuous semblants, the rupture of social links, and the logic of the “not-all” that pervades the film?

“We Need to Talk About Kevin”: Inconsistency and the Act
June 20, 2012 at Barnard College
Presentation by Dinorah Otero / Discussion by Robert Buck & Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff

The narrative of the 2011 film, "We Need to Talk about Kevin", winds around a mother, her son, and a fictitious, but all too familiar small-town-America high school massacre. Considering the waning status of the symbolic order, how can we read the consummate act of the film? Does it indicate falling from the scene or moving onto the stage? Where do we locate this act in the context of tenuous semblants, the rupture of social links, and the logic of the “not-all” that pervades the film?


KAHPENAKWU March 7, 2012 at Barnard College Artist presentation by Robert Buck / Discussion by Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff In his recent exhibition, Kahpenakwu, Robert Buck ciphers the "West" to collect and re-invent the traces that remain from his work in a desert landscape. The Culture and Psychoanalysis Seminar will take up this exhibition in light of how art making might bear on the experience of an analysis and a knowledge of how to do with what remains. In Kahpenakwu, the question of the insignia of the artist looms as much as the fallen semblant, "The West".

KAHPENAKWU
March 7, 2012 at Barnard College
Artist presentation by Robert Buck / Discussion by Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff

In his recent exhibition, Kahpenakwu, Robert Buck ciphers the "West" to collect and re-invent the traces that remain from his work in a desert landscape. The Culture and Psychoanalysis Seminar will take up this exhibition in light of how art making might bear on the experience of an analysis and a knowledge of how to do with what remains. In Kahpenakwu, the question of the insignia of the artist looms as much as the fallen semblant, "The West".


OCCUPY WALL STREET: It Is Right to Rebel Without a Cause (these grievances are not-all inclusive) January 25, 2012 at Barnard College Presentation by Ross Shields / Discussion by Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff and Robert Buck Occupy Wall Street appears leaderless, without demands, and without a cause—it would seem to be lacking the very traits that once identified social and political movements. The seminar will investigate the extent to which the coherence of "The 99%" depends on the incoherence—the lack—of the "one demand". Have the politics of representation been replaced by a symptom of their failure: occupation? How might the movement itself occupy the position of the absent cause orienting politics towards the real?

OCCUPY WALL STREET: It Is Right to Rebel Without a Cause (these grievances are not-all inclusive)
January 25, 2012 at Barnard College
Presentation by Ross Shields / Discussion by Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff and Robert Buck

Occupy Wall Street appears leaderless, without demands, and without a cause—it would seem to be lacking the very traits that once identified social and political movements. The seminar will investigate the extent to which the coherence of "The 99%" depends on the incoherence—the lack—of the "one demand". Have the politics of representation been replaced by a symptom of their failure: occupation? How might the movement itself occupy the position of the absent cause orienting politics towards the real?


"Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty" at The Metropolitan Museum of Art August 3, 2011 at Barnard College Robert Buck & Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff The new seminar dedicated to psychoanalysis and contemporary culture will discuss the sensational retrospective of designer Alexander McQueen at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, on view through August 7, 2011. The unprecedented, mass phenomenon of the exhibition invites us to consider the status of the semblant and the object in fashion, one distinct from the art object, in an era of the primacy of jouissance. "I want to be the purveyor of a certain silhouette or a way of cutting so that when I am dead and gone people will know that the 21st century was started by Alexander McQueen." – Alexander McQueen

"Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty" at The Metropolitan Museum of Art
August 3, 2011 at Barnard College
Robert Buck & Cyrus Saint Amand Poliakoff

The new seminar dedicated to psychoanalysis and contemporary culture will discuss the sensational retrospective of designer Alexander McQueen at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, on view through August 7, 2011. The unprecedented, mass phenomenon of the exhibition invites us to consider the status of the semblant and the object in fashion, one distinct from the art object, in an era of the primacy of jouissance.

"I want to be the purveyor of a certain silhouette or a way of cutting so that when I am dead and gone people will know that the 21st century was started by Alexander McQueen." – Alexander McQueen