Thursday, May 10, 2007

Dear Essay on Lacan and Kristeva,

I noticed tonight while writing you that you don't seem to have any space in your introduction in which an overview of Freud's ideas can be given. This is remiss of you: after all, it is I, your writer, that will be chided for not having defined my terms properly, and launching into a discussion of Lacan and Kristeva without situating their ideas.

It really is too much for you to assume that I can just direct my readers to go away and do their research before putting their greedy eyes on my fine exposition. Even if it is the case - and you musn't share this with anyone - that I wish I could tell them to work out their own concise definitions of psychoanalytical terms before coming to me, begging for enlightenment when they have been, frankly, lazy.

In any case, I'll be seeing you soon. I hope you take these suggestions into account and include them in your body by the time we are next together.

Much love,


Thursday, May 03, 2007

Well, shame on me for doubting 2007's pop output! Because here it is: the anthemic r'n'b power hit of this year: Rihanna's "Umbrella". This song is gi-normous. It also manages to rhyme 'each other' and 'um-b-rella'. And! and! and! Do you remember those rumours that Beyonce's "Ring the Alarm" was actually about Rihanna, who'd been spending some time with Jay Z? Well, this is the song with his rap on it. It summoned the wrath of Beyonce's giant snare drum hit!

The clip seems cool too.

Whee. I'm inspired to make a high concept mix cd. Will post more details shortly.

[Update:] Ooh ooh ooh! Just spotted possible actual lyrical reference to Beyonce's aforementioned song: "You'll coming running to my arms / It's okay don't be alarmed..." Do you see? Do you see?

(Hey, I gave a paper on Lacan and Kristeva on 1 hour's sleep this morning after making my way to class despite a) apocalyptic rain and b) a train derailment. I think I'm entitled to a little cutting loose.)

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

I am now sitting within the bounds of the first essay extension for the season. It's only been a few days ("Father, since my last being before the actual deadline"). In the interests of placing myself before the judgement of the Big Other, I thought I might post a small list of tasks I have to complete. Perhaps it will go some way towards convincing me that the amount of work I have to do is finite. Besides, all this inventory-taking seems to work for Adam Kotsko. It might work for me as well.

The essay topic is horribly open-ended: 'The psychoanalytic subject of language, according to Lacan ("Agency of the Letter in the Unconscious") and Kristeva (Revolution in Poetic Language). You may compare and contrast their models. (5,500 words)

I have to complete only these flimsy little tasks:

1. Write something about the autonomy of the unconscious.
2. Cobble together a teensy weensy account of the subject coming into language.
3. Determine what my argument is.
4. Figure out what Kristeva's 'thetic' is. Say something concise about this.
5. Compare and contrast the theorists, in circa 1,500 words.
6. Climb moral high horse and write introduction. Perhaps linking my lack of provision of overarching account of subjectivity to something he says in Seminar XI about how we shouldn't try to suture up the split that is opened by the unconscious. For only I, Catherine, have privileged understanding of Lacan, and so can reveal to the reader the trap to which this essay topic leads.

I also have to give a talk at 9am tomorrow morning for my coursework subject. I will, again, be speaking about Lacan and Kristeva. This time, however, I have even less in terms of topic guidelines. But I have an image of myself drawing things on the board and standing in an authoritative manner. Like a drunken memory, however, I can't hear the words that I'm saying in this vision.

Right. Now to read. Or to write. Or both at once.

PS. I forget to herald last week as 'Lesbian Utopia Week'. There was much listening to t.A.T.u.