phallicism of indebtedness

A certain “negation of negation” is also constitutive of the phallic signifier. That is to say, what makes the phallic signifier such a complex notion is not only that, in it, the symbolic, imaginary, and real dimensions are intertwined, but also that, in a double self-reflexive step which uncannily imitates the process of the “negation of negation,” it condenses three levels: it is (1) *position*: the signifier of the lost part, of what the subject loses and lacks with its entry into (or submission to) the signifying order; (2) *negation*: the signifier of (this) lack; and (3) *negation of negation*: itself the lacking/missing signifier.* The phallus is the part which is lost (“sacrificed” ) with the entry into the symbolic order and, Simultaneously, the signifier of this loss.**

Slavoj Zizek 2012 Less Than Nothing, page 475

— what has phallus to do with debt? credit? finance capital?

example: this presentation about debt movements: <— from 43:40 onwards

* François Balmes, Dieu, le sexe et la verite, Ramonville Saint-Agne: Eres 2007. p. 150.
** Ibid., p. 166.


from Tarrying With The Negative:

This primacy of possibility over actuality enables us also to articulate the difference between the phallic signifier and the fetish. This difference may seem elusive since, in both cases, we have to do with a “reflective” element which supplements a primordial lack (the fetish fills out the void of the missing maternal phallus; the phallus is the signifier of the very lack of the signifier). However, as the signifier of pure possibility, the phallus is never fully actualized (i.e., it is the empty signifier which, although devoid of any determinate, positive meaning, stands for the potentiality of any possible future meaning), whereas a fetish always claims an actual status (i.e., it pretends actually to substitute for the maternal phallus). In other words, insofar as a fetish is an element that fills in the lack of (the maternal) phallus, the most concise definition of the phallic signifier is that it is a fetish of itself: phallus qua “signifier of castration” as it were gives body to its own lack.


commodity fetishism + phallicism of indebtedness?


example: you have a cellphone. it rings and you answer. you know that the caller pays. think of the generic situation: caller pays for what? why do you answer? how does a cellphone exist in the first place? from where does the authority of a cellphone call originate? and how is it possible that commercial robots can use this authority?




“You invited me, it’s not my custom to go where I’m not wanted”


note the logic : “not going where one is not wanted” = “going not-everywhere one is wanted”


“X is not-everywhere you want it” proves “X cannot be where you don’t want it”


commodity, “me” <– "you want it" <– (X exists not-everywhere) you want it (X cannot be) where you (don’t) want it –> “where you want it” –> place of debt, “your house”


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