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The Writing of Joyce

The Letter, Issue 37, Summer 2006, Pages 1 - 7


Rolando Karothy

Since its beginning, literature has rotated around an apparently non-existent, ineffable knot. Literature honours the ineffable in the very moment of going through it. If we have the courage to allow language to freely do its labour, we can trace the contour of that Real. Because behind the ineffable we shall see a variety of shadows cast that will draw its silhouette in negative.

The writer atomizes the signifier. In Lituraterre, Lacan states that literature excavates a void. Thus, he retakes Seminar VII, where he says that sublimation seeks to produce a signifier which shows the presence of the void of the Thing, further from the misleading object. Both analyst and artist share this relationship with the ineffable.

The meeting point between the psychoanalyst and the writer is that which is impossible to say and that which is impossible to write. But the analyst and the writer diverge when the relationship with language is considered. Writing and psychoanalysis do not take the signifier in the same way because psychoanalysis is an experience of the word. While literature wants to break off with Language even with the aid of Language, it goes against the word, it is an insurrection against speech, against inner and outer uproar, against what Blanchot calls the excess of writing, ‘that talking immensity which addresses us withdrawing us from ourselves.'

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