It has taken me over a month to recover from handing in the book. A month where, of course, I have not been idle. I have been ill, though, too often, so I am going on holiday to recover properly to the post-book catch up. Not all has been bad, though. I can now forward roll, do the crab, almost cartwheel and hand stand. not bad for someone that was never a proper child.
I am going to be writing a lot in the near future, but I am going to be dancing even more. I am straight back into it when I come back, as part of the community cast for the Barrowlands Ballet’s piece ‘A Conversation with Carmel’ at Tramway. Another performance opens for me that same week and then I will launch into a 5-day development opportunity and perfecting my backward rolls. Keep your eyes peel for writing will be an integral part of all of that.
Žižek: A seduction—to be successful—has to imply a moment of impotence and failure, in the sense that you playfully acknowledge your limitations. Seduction never works with perfection. People are totally wrong when they think that they should present themselves as perfect, blah blah blah blah.
I talked with a sex adviser who told me, when you have a couple where the guy’s impotent, the worst thing to do is to give him some bullshit like, “Don’t think about, just do it spontaneously.” This is where you kill him. He told me one way to do it is to tell them to imitate a purely externalized bureaucratic procedure. Like, you want to make love, okay, sit down with your partner and make a Stalinist plan.
First your fingers (she says) then put your hand on my breasts (she says). Now (he says) you put your finger into my ass. Then you get totally caught in these bureaucratic negotiations. And then usually somebody says, “Fuck it, why don’t we just fuck, let’s go.” The point is you can only do this spontaneously after you have been bureaucratic. It can get eroticized . . .
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Žižek: There’s an Indian guy in Cambridge [Pranav Mistry], who developed “SixthSense,” okay it’s still primitive, he didn’t commercialize it, but it points towards the future. A simple mechanism: you have a camera, a small one, digital, on your head. You have a kind of a projector on your breast, and you are connected to the net through a cellphone in your pocket, and it works like this. The camera identifies the object in front of you. Because it’s connected, the computer can identify them. And then immediately the Internet gets the data about the object and projects them onto any plain surface. You interact with a real object, but at the same time you can project on them all the data.
And I think it’s an interesting thing because the effect is a kind of magic. Objects answer you, telling all about themselves. It must be wonderful to do this in seduction. Okay, it holds also for women, but from my male chauvinist perspective, I look at the woman and it’s projected on her. She likes anal sex, she likes her breasts pinched, she likes this music, she likes that. You get instant data on the girl. This is ideology at its purest. And isn’t it how our real lives are structured? Let’s say you are an anti-Arab, anti-Jewish, or anti-black racist. Isn’t it exactly the same what happens when you see a real Arab or Jew or black guy? You project on him all your racist knowledge. You see that he’s evil, a danger to you, or whatever, blah blah. I think it’s a perfect metaphor for our spontaneous ideology . . .
Mania, frenzy, hysteria … Grades on a scale, or different things altogether?
Beatlemania was a term used during the 1960s to describe the intense fan frenzy particularly demonstrated by young teen girls directed toward The Beatles during the early years of their success. The word is a portmanteau of “Beatles” and “mania”. Andi Lothian, a former Scottish music promoter, claims that he coined the term while speaking to a reporter at the Caird Hall Beatles concert that took place as part of the Beatles Mini-Tour of Scotland, on 7th October 1963, and an early printed use of the word is in The Daily Mirror 2 November 1963 in a news story about the previous day’s Beatles concert in Cheltenham. Many fans across the world were known to have Beatlemania, which became common in the United States after The Beatles performed on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964. ‘Beatlemania’ was characterised by intense levels of hysteria demonstrated by fans both at the actual concerts played by the band and during the band’s arrivals and travels to and from locations.
A “consistent other” (un autre consistant), is one of the ways Jacques Lacan defined the analyst. Someone who would maintain a particular standard and repeat a task with minimal variation. Maybe a repetition yielding enough trust to facilitate a restorative life experience. A fruitful dependency in the face of shattered hopes and pains viciously inflicted. The continuous presence of a benevolent, yet intrinsically separate other.
I hope you all have the happiest of times this Christmas and New Year whatever you do. I am off to Spain for a while, and then back to Scotland to be the host of a modest, yet artistic, New Year’s party before joining the Ruth Mills Winter Intensive straight after the festivities. As she writes: ‘start as you mean to continue’ and that is what I wish for you all too. I will try to live up to holiday hysteria, finish writing this chapter of mine and dance maniacally whenever I can surrounded by inspiring people, which is how I mean to continue my year. See you in 2013, if not before.
Laura Gonzalez is an artist and writer. Her recent practice encompasses film, dance, photography and text, and her work has been exhibited and published in the UK, Spain and Portugal. She has spoken at numerous conferences and events, including the Museum for the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, the Medical Museum in Copenhagen, College Arts Association and the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society. When she is not following Freud, Lacan and Marx’s footsteps with her camera, she lectures postgraduate students at the Glasgow School of Art.