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Lacan returned regularly to The Interpretation of Dreams (Freud, 1900a) to indic ate how the real is located at the

root of every dream, what Freud called the dr eam's navel, a limit point where the unknown emerges (1900a, pp. 111n, 525). It is here, at the dream's navel, that Lacan located the point where the real hooks up with the symbolic (Lacan, 1975). Lacan approached the real through hallucina tion and psychosis by careful study of Freud's "Wolf man" case (1918b [1914]), F reud's commentary on Daniel Paul Schreber (1911c [1910]), and "Negation" (Freud, 1925h). If the Name of the Father is foreclosed and the symbolic function of ca stration is refused by the subject, the signifiers of the father and of castrati on reappear in reality, in the form of hallucinations. Hence the Wolf Man's hall ucination of a severed finger and Schreber's delusions of communicating with God . Thus, in developing the concept of foreclosure, Lacan was able to declare, "Wh at does not come to light in the symbolic appears in the real" (1966, p. 388). L acan reconceived Freud's hypothesis of an original affirmation as a symbolic ope ration in which the subject emerges from an already present real and recognizes the signifying stroke that engages the subject in a world symbolically ordered b y the Name of the Father and castration. In his seminar The Four Fundamental Con cepts of Psychoanalysis (1978), Lacan took up Freud's Beyond the Pleasure Princi ple (1920g) and approached the real in terms of compulsion and repetition.' He proposed distinguishing between two different aspects of repetition: a symbol ic aspect that depends on the compulsion of signifiers (automaton) and a real as pect that he called tuch, the interruption of the automaton by trauma or a bad en counter that the subject is unable to avoid. Engendered by the real of trauma, r epetition is perpetuated by the failure of symbolization. From this point on, La can defined the real as "that which always returns to the same place" (Lacan, 19 78, p. 49). Trauma, which Freud situated within the framework of the death drive , Lacan conceptualized as the impossible-to-symbolize real. Thus Lacan attempted, by borrowing from the mathematics of knot theory, to inven t a formulation independent of symbols. By affirming the equivalence of the thre e categories R, S, and I, by representing them as three perfectly identical circ les that could be distinguished only by the names they were given, and by knotti ng these three circles together in specific ways (such that if any one of them i s cut, the other two are set free), Lacan introduced a new object in psychoanaly sis, the Borromean knot. This knot is both a material object that can be manipul ated and a metaphor for the structure of the subject. The knot, made up of three rings, is characterized by how the rings (representing the real, the symbolic, and the imaginary) interlock and support each other. From this point on in Lacan 's teaching, the real was no longer an opaque and terrifying unconceptualizable entity. Rather, it is positioned right alongside the symbolic and tied to it by mediation of the imaginary. Thus, whatever our capacity for symbolizing and imag ining, there remains an irreducible realm of the nonmeaning, and that is where t he real is located (see Lacan, 1974-1975). Lacan invents the final version of the concept of Real (which will become the Re al of Lacan) in its seminar the identification where he speaks unceasingly about t he reversal and the inversion and especially about a sentence extracted from Kan t where the matter is : Ein leerer Gegenstand ohne Begriff (the emptiest conceptua l object with absolutely no possibility to seize it with the hand). He put into practice that about which he is speaking, perhaps even without reali zing it (why not!), he transforms the German adjective leer and he turns it over ( as he did with the saussurian algorithm s/S of which he made S/s). He reverse it to make Rel (in French). The Real, concept that he will use definitively and all the time. Leer: who means in German: vacuum, unoccupied, vacant (sometime : meaningless)

Leerer: who is a superlative and means:

the most vacuum

I am not sure that he realized what he was doing, even if always, Lacan applied to its speech what he was speaking about or what he was working on. 1- The Real of Lacan - Field of the Trinity where the things can be at the same time, present and not present ! It is a symbolic system place where never a human has, did not have, nor will no t have access. It is an empty place and bottomless where, under the sign of eter nity, are represented in hollow the Unit and the Infinite, as with some invisibl e ink on a support of absence. It is the place where the name of God is written. It is a hole always already empty from immemorial time and from which the effect iveness of the discourse effects can rise for those who accepted to go through t he Symbolic Death System (or Symbolic castration). It is the place where are filed with abundance all the tools necessary to the ex ercise of art. It is the residence of the three big letters : AOL . Art, Other and Love. One can find there in an infinite number, all the letters necessary to the writi ng of a novel The more you use them, the more there number grows ! It is the place where the Infinite can be seized from its negation, like an Infi nite that is not. But the fact of quoting it even in its negation realises it, just like when one says "the centaur". Everybody knows that it has two arms and four legs and yet t hat does not exist!