“in the..gaze..the desire of the Other addresses itself to us. ..It is..avoidance of the gaze that founds the..imaginary register, both the ego and its objects. This elision of the gaze is the very essence of..méconnaissance.”
R. Boothby (via alterities)
“Public figures from the Pope downwards bombard us with injunctions to resist the culture of excessive greed and consumption, but this spectacle of cheap moralization is an ideological operation if there ever was one. The compulsion (to expand) inscribed into the system itself is here translated into a matter of personal sin, a private psychological propensity. As one theologian close to the Pope put it: “The present crisis is not a crisis of capitalism but a crisis of morality,” carefully insinuating that the protesters should be targeting injustice, greed, consumerism, etcetera, rather than capitalism itself. We can congratulate the theologian on his honesty inasmuch as he openly formulates the negation implied in the moralizing critique: the point of emphasizing morality is to prevent the critique of capitalism. The self-propelling circulation of Capital remains more than ever the ultimate Real of our lives, a beast that by definition cannot be controlled.”
Slavoj Zizek, pg. 78 “The Year of Dreaming Dangerously” (via gotmyschlaggon)

(Source : comradeconrad)

“We see that substance addictions are only one specific form of blind attachment to harmful ways of being. Yet we condemn the addict’s stubborn refusal to give up something deleterious to his life or to the lives of others. Why do we despise, ostracize, and punish the drug addict when as a social collective we share the same blindness and engage in the same rationalizations? To pose that question is to answer it. We despise, ostracize, and punish the addict because we don’t wish to see how much we resemble him. In his dark mirror our own features are unmistakable. We shudder at the recognition. This mirror is not for us, we say to the addict. You are different, and you don’t belong with us. Like the hard-core addict’s pursuit of drugs, much of our economic and cultural life caters to people’s cravings to escape mental and emotional distress. In an apt phrase, Lewis Lapham derides “consumer markets selling promises of instant relief from the pain of thought, loneliness, doubt, experience, envy and old age.” According to a Statistics Canada study, 31 percent of working adults aged nineteen to sixty-four consider themselves workaholics who attach excessive importance to their work and are “overdedicated and perhaps overwhelmed by their jobs.” “They have trouble sleeping, are more likely to be stressed out and unhealthy, and feel they don’t spend enough time with their families,” reports the Globe and Mail. Work doesn’t necessarily give them greater satisfaction, suggested a professor of human resources and management at McMaster University. “These people turn to work to occupy their time and energy” -as compensation for what is lacking in their lives, much as the drug addict employs substances. The addict dreads and abhors the present moment; she bends feverishly only toward the next time, the moment when her brain, infused with her drug of choice, will briefly experience itself as liberated from the burden of the past and the fear of the future- the two elements that make the present intolerable. Many of us resemble the drug addict in our ineffectual efforts to fill in the spiritual black hole, the void at the center, where we have lost touch with our souls, our spirit-with those sources of meaning and value that are not contingent or fleeting. Our consumerist, acquisition-, action-, and image-mad culture only serves to deepen the hole, leaving us emptier than before. The precursor to addiction is dislocation, according to Bruce Alexander, professor emeritus of psychology at Simon Fraser University. By dislocation he means the loss of psychological, social, and economic integration into family and culture- a sense of exclusion, isolation, and powerlessness. “Only chronically and severely dislocated people are vulnerable to addiction,” he writes. The historical correlation between severe dislocation and addiction is strong. Although alcohol consumption and drunkenness on festive occasions was widespread in Europe during the Middle Ages, and although a few people became “inebriates” or “drunkards,” mass alcoholism was not a problem. However, alcoholism gradually spread with the beginnings of free markets after 1500, and eventually became a raging epidemic with the dominance of the free market society after 1800.”
gabor mate (via zizekianrevolution)
“For I found myself involved in so many doubts and errors, that I was convinced I had advanced no farther in all my attempts at learning, than the discovery at every turn of my own ignorance.”
René Descartes, Discourse on Method (via intellectual-poaching)

medieval-women:

The Trotula are three texts on women’s medicine written during the 12th century in Salerno, Italy. The name derives from a female physician and medical writer, Trota of Salerno, who was associated with one of the texts.

Some hot contraception tips from Trotula Texts:

1. Carry the womb of a goat which has never had offspring against your naked flesh.

2. Remove the testicles from a male weasel, carry the testicles in your bosom tied in a goose skin.

Sources: 1. 2.

lovevoltaireusapart:

For, after all, what is man in nature? A nothing compared to the infinite, a whole compared to the nothing, a middle point between all and nothing, infinitely remote from an understanding of the extremes; the end of things and their principles are unattainably hidden from him in impenetrable secrecy.

Equally incapable of seeing the nothingness from which he emerges and the infinity in which he is engulfed.

—Blaise Pascal, Pensées, 199

…a single paradox….underlies every aspect of Lacan’s theory, the “sexual impasse.” At first blush, this phrase invokes naive feminism, condemning “phallocentrism” and embracing idealized womanly values. Nothing could be further from the truth. Lacan’s concept is divorced from both anatomy and “gender.”

The terms masculine-feminine do not refer to persons either biologically or socially identified as male or female. Rather, they refer to incompatible ways of confronting alienation and contradiction. The “masculine” attitude is denial. It attempts to resolve contradiction in order to create a complete and closed social universe. The feminine attitude is acceptance of contradiction’s inevitability.

…The masculine does not merely fail to hear, it affirmatively refuses to acknowledge the feminine. Indeed, the masculine side of personality creates itself through repression of the feminine. Based on these definitions, no individual could be exclusively masculine or feminine.

Jeanne Lorraine Schroeder, Turning Law Inside Out (via sinthematica)

(Source : liartownusa)

“The very language we use to describe the self-made ideal has these fault lines embedded within it: To “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” is to succeed by dint of your own efforts. But that’s a modern corruption of the phrase’s original meaning. It used to describe a quixotic attempt to achieve an impossibility, not a feat of self-reliance. You can’t pull yourself up by your bootstraps, anymore than you can by your shoelaces. (Try it.) The phrase’s first known usage comes from a sarcastic 1834 account of a crackpot inventor’s attempt to build a perpetual motion machine.”