The Name of the Son

Historically the end of the “paternal myth” is only one contingent versions of the collapse of a foundation of the imaginary-symbolic structure that protects and enables us within the ocean of the real. The end of a paternalistic god structure that had become too rigid by the end of the middle ages gave way to the modernity of the birth of the son: autonomous, sovereign, individuated in abstract art, revolutionary politics, and psychoanalysis. It was already forecast by the most patriarchal Egyptians long ago: the father Osiris would be replaced by the son Horus just as he had replaced the mother Isis. The Oedipal myth is but a traumatic tale of taboo and a failure to move beyond the father. It is now our task to cross the abyss – the black sun of melancholy, the dark continent of the feminine, and the frenzy of the fathers – through the sovereign act of the generic, at once unique and universal. We sons and daughters of science, of modernity, must assume the power to signify, to invent, rather than to be represented by and for another. Where “me” was – represented for another signifier – there I will be – in the gap of freedom I open up through my symptom, my trace and gesture, my speech act. I “make” and “am” the sinthome.

The Transcendental discourse of the Master is as old as history. Fissures in authority are closed up. The killing of the king only solicits another king. The revolution always ends with a new order – the calling back in of the superego. What did Lacan mean that we can do without the name of the father if we know how to use it. To own our own – means of production. To create meaning through artifice. But it requires a mystic, a poet. Lacan was interested in St Theresa and James Joyce, alike in different contexts, mystical in enduring the Act of Being, poetic in writing it for some others. Together this forms a “speech act.” It is not enough to act or be acted on but to write its sense. It is not enough to write what has been inscribed for you but to re-invent a minor language, new signifiers. Together this is a speech act or “auto-poesis.” This model of cure takes psychoanalysis far beyond the mechanical repair of the body through surgery, drugs, or cognitive re-education. It is a politics – the only politics remaining for the sovereign being. The struggle of the micropolitics of reality through biopower and psychopower renders the macropolitics of parties useless. Politics now revolves around the discourse – the power to construct reality through the unconscious “philosophical decision” at the ground of each institution, each encounter.