Berenice Abbott, Jean Cocteau with Gun, Paris,
1927, Gelatin silver print,
Ryerson Image Center/Getty Images;
Berenice Abbott, Untitled (self-portrait), 1925, Gelatin silver print, Ryerson Image Center/Getty Images
The Baroness and the Bird
in The Lacanian Review
Cover: Robert Buck
Lacanian Review 11
The Art of Singularities
The Lacanian Review No. 11 explores what can be said about the art of singularities in the experience of psychoanalysis, the singular in art and writing, and fields of mathematics that aim at this horizon of the real. Without the effort to circumscribe what is singular for the speaking being, life ends up as a gray composite of everyone's favorite color.
Fueled by globalization, the world is increasingly governed by the category of the exception. As a result lives appear confined by the law of the statistical norm and at the same time the lawlessness of individualism. Reduced to medical data, converted into subjective data, a series of app profiles with checkboxes feeds algorithms used to market ourselves back to ourselves. The result of the standardization of subjectivity is a series of endless new categories of identity, exceptionalism attempting to carve out a vanishing space of the subject.
Psychoanalysis, pushed to its end, can attest to the singularity of a speaking being, something impossible to quantify or compare with a norm applied for all people—human rights—or some people but not others—segregation. This concept of singularity has an absolute dimension in that it cannot be replicated, translated, or held against a principle of commonality or community. Identifications drawn from the Other and the buzz-word master signifiers that are imposed on bodies do not cease to operate; they are a structural fact of language. Yet with psychoanalysis and other discourses that approach the real, the irreducible remainders encountered by the speaking body can never be totally inscribed within the master's discourse. It is not a question of something unique, but an invention outside of sense, one written not to be read, but nevertheless spoken.
This volume of The Lacanian Review (TLR), starting from the orientation to the real and the singular developed by Jacques Lacan and elaborated by Jacques-Alain Miller, presents the dossier of presentations delivered at the January 2021 event of the New Lacanian School, “Pass and Formation of the Psychoanalyst.” Testimonies of the pass delivered to a School of psychoanalysis embody one of the arts of singularity. A collection of new texts from 14 authors on 14 visual artists shows other pathways to the singular, one by one. With a few detours into the littoral, the sinthome, the signature and style, TLR invites the reader to consider what Lacan proposed as inciting one to pass through the right hole of what is offered by an analysis as singular.