This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
1. Framework: we can weigh the effects of the plan and the negative gets the status quo or competitive policy option; best for fairness because there are an infinite number of philosophical ideas we have to research, and education because it’s key to learning about the actual topic. 2. Aff impacts come first; extinction from nuclear war is the end of all human aspiration; outweighs their suffering and violence claims which are inevitable. Also, we control uniqueness to the impacts; even if technology were the root case, alt. can’t act fast enough to stop our impacts. 3. Perm do the plan and all non-mutually exclusively parts of the alternative. 4. No root cause – idea that there is a single concept that caused all war and violence in history doesn’t make sense; various political, cultural, and other differences are causes of conflict; even if power relations were the root cause of violence the alternative can’t act fast enough to stop aff impacts. 5. Negative discourse toward nuclear war key to healing the wounds of the indigenous communities by the nuclear cycle Baldonado 98
Statement Coordinator Myrla Baldonado, “People's Task Force for Base Clean Up, Philippines” http://www.nuclearfiles.org/hinonproliferationtreaty/98npt_ngo2.html We reaffirm the correctness and relevance of the 1997 Moorea Declaration by Abolition 2000 which
states that colonized and indigenous people have in the large part, borne the brunt of this nuclear devastation - from the mining of uranium and the testing of nuclear weapons on indigenous peoples land, to the dumping, storage and transport of plutonium and nuclear wastes, and the theft of land for nuclear infrastructure." We therefore come here to the table as victims of the nuclear age.
While it is difficult to transcend the nature of what it is to be the sacrificial lambs of military imposed "peace," we seek to transcend mere victimization in demanding and calling for a final cessation to these genocidal acts of nuclear colonialism*. We are inspired by the work of the recently-deceased Brazilian educator Paulo Freire, who spoke of strategy on behalf of oppressed peoples working to liberate themselves from the oppression that dehumanizes both the oppressor and the oppressed. Being the victims of the nuclear age, we ask you to listen to the suffering voices silenced by attribution of priority to a precarious "peace" maintained by military means. The Pacific, like most Indigenous
Genuine peace can only begin to emerge when the nations of the world start to dismantle military and nuclear installations now dominating the entire Pacific from Guam to Hawaii to French Polynesia. *Nuclear disarmament can begin to heal the wounds imposed on communities not only in the South, but in the Northern countries as well.* The theory and practice of nuclear deterrence have been extremely hostile to democratic practice. Nuclear disarmament and demilitarization will allow communities to participate more fully in both the political sphere and civil society. National military strategies, on the other hand, have often required the absence of free democratic thought. As you meet
communities around the world, is heavily militarized. here, we urge you to take strong and courageous leadership in de-legitimizing what, for a whole generation, gripped our imagination as we tottered in so close a proximity to total nuclear annihilation. As we have heard oftentimes, the end of the Cold War has provided a historic opportunity to rid ourselves of this "near-death" experience with planned obsolescence of the human race. Both the NPT and subsequent efforts to re-visit it, including the 1995 review, *produced many promises which you all undertook to achieve. Integrity in this instance is crucial, and we urge you all to be true to those promise*s. With the next formal Review of the NPT in the year 2000, it will not only be logical to set ourselves on a new footing in human history; *it will also be a crucial symbol for beginning a new millennium with serious efforts to begin negotiations toward nuclear disarmament.
6. No impact to global surveillance, benefits indigenous people by promoting their interests Liftin, 98 Karen Litfin, Professor of Political Science University of Washington, 98 “The Greening of Sovereignty in World Politics, p. 211”
Because the use of ERS data in developing countries raises a host of complex cultural, political, and ethical issues, not all observers see this sort of technology transfer in a positive light. For instances, Masahide
Kato is critical of nonprofit groups based in industrialized countries who supply satellite-generated information to remote areas of developing countries. He believes they are representatives of a “global technosubjectivity” which renders the territories of indigenous
peoples as resources. Indeed satellites seem to offer the tantalizing prospective of “sovereign knowledge,” or knowledge with supreme authority. As only enthusiast proclaims, they “show vast terrains in correct perspective, from one viewpoint, and at one moment in time. But, that “one viewpoint” is generally located in the North and that “one moment in time,” cannot capture centuries of past environmental abuse, a fact that may prove profoundly disadvantageous for developing countries when ERS date are use to assign responsibility for ecological degradation. While Kato
perhaps too quickly condemns ERS technology, which we have seen can be use to promote the interests of indigenous peoples, his critique reveals two interrelated issues of political culture implicit in ERS as an artifact/idea: the control of knowledge (who controls it and for what purposes) and the constitution of knowledge (what counts as knowledge). By employing ERS date , environmental and indigenous rights groups demonstrate that it can be translated into usable knowledge for purposes of cultural and ecological preservation, but they simultaneously legitimize it as a source of credible knowledge.
Pease'562). The more the future fails to develop along these imagined lines.org/cgi/reprint/LXV/1/1. the nation’s capacity to cope with such an attack becomes a test of its morale and for that reason the nuclear aftermath. were pressed into the service of apocalyptic speculations. In virtually every case the USA plays a reactive role. particularly after the Soviet Union's successful test in 1949 (Boyer. pp. or reader might play out the role of a survivor through the very act of reading a narrative whose deliverer has died. Imagining future nuclear scenarios enables criticism of nuclear weapons ability to destroy all humankind Foard 97 James Foard.341). Secondly. Vol. these novels explore anxieties about problems of control. and the Annihilation of the Students of Ichijo School. Specifically.” Journal of American Studies of Turkey. Cherished human values like reason might be transposed on to extraterrestrial beings. Arizona State.pdf This ambivalence about Hiroshima has been partially ameliorated by displacing it with Armageddon in our imagination of nuclear weapons In Amenca the images of the atomic bomb. 39-49.tr/~jast/Number11/Seed. . the more necessary is the reconfirmation of these narratives as mere imaginary extrapolations.7.oxfordjournals. Professor of English literature at the University of Liverpool. Finally this fiction expresses a collective horror of ultimate endings.htm A number of recurring features emerge from these narratives. Associate Professor of Religion. 8. images of a nuclear Armageddon have helped us perform two sorts of cultural tasks fundamental for imagining nuclear weapons: those involving difference and those involving representation. in the short and long term. both scientific and otherwise. By "difference" I mean both the articulation of what makes nuclear weapons different from other weapons and the consequent reflection on the different human situation engendered by them. By deploying a whole range of strategies to imagine a dreaded future. 1997 “Imagining Nuclear Weapons: Hiroshima. a process which has until recently assigned the horror that Hiroshima represented to a superpower war in an imagined future (cf. Armageddon. Ultimately there is an unusual circularity to such narratives. Imagining nuclear wars serve as a warning against the possibility and opens up questioning of national values Seed 2k David Seed.edu. Some human presence persists however tenuous or displaced. 11.” Journal of the American Academy of Religion. occasions an interrogation of cherished national values. Thirdly. they function as warnings against such imminent developments. By "representation" I mean the expressions which seek to describe the use of nuclear weapons and incorporate that description into structures of meaning Armageddon permits us to define the difference of nuclear weapons by their capacity to destroy the human species in a war that no one will win. never attacking first. because nuclear attack can only be mounted with the latest technology. http://www. 2000 “Imagining the Worst: Science Fiction and Nuclear War. http://jaar.bilkent.
nuclear reflection has yoked itself to the Cold War and indulged itself in opposing human extinction As a consequence. and certainly would not justify any policy which significantly increased the risk of nuclear war. through the policies they have promoted and the institutions they have constructed and supported. This institutionalised risk of nuclear war will seem less acceptable if one consequence of continued preparations for war were a major challenge to the complete system of political and economic power and privilege. 1982 “How the Peace Movement Should be Preparing for Nuclear War. which the apocalyptic imagination is but one culturally specific and historically bound expression Following such a measurement of difference can help us see that 10. the end of the Cold War has meant the obsolescence of not only our strategies toward but also our images of the nuclear threat Although excluded from our apocalyptic obsession. It is in their implications for the present that peace movement activities relating to nuclear war must be assessed. both in crises and confrontations and through the very existence of nuclear arsenals. National decision-makers may wish to avoid nuclear war to save their own lives.9.pdf Since the onset of the superpower conflict. Such questions are beyond the range of this historian of religions What is clear is that the efforts of Hiroshima survivors suggest measuring the difference of nuclear death by the impossibility of theodicy. No. Armageddon. of we have not achieved freedom from nuclear danger in the past few years solely because the apocalyptic scenario seems less plausible and that we need new theological and philosophical reflections. Furthermore. 2.oxfordjournals. affirms that the use of nuclear weapons is indeed possible because it has already happened. 13. moral issues that are as pressing now as they were then: Is the instantaneous extinction of cities different from other war death? If using a nuclear weapon (or two) does not endanger the human species. Nuclear weapons states have refrained from nuclear war thus far not primarily because of their perception of the human disaster of nuclear war but because of the possible political consequences. . Imagining nuclear war demonstrates it is unwinnable and such reflections do not work to exclusion of envisioning past nuclear wars Foard 97 James Foard. the survivors' insistence on the reality of references for nuclear language.” Journal of the American Academy of Religion.” Bulletin of Peace Proposals. Professor of Social Sciences in the School of Social Sciences. Vol. and the Annihilation of the Students of Ichijo School. A prepared peace movement would ensure that such political consequences are as serious as possible. Media and Communication at the University of Wollongong. 149-159 But these possibilities provide relatively little consolation for the human disaster of nuclear war. but they have demonstrated a continued willingness to risk nuclear war. pp. Arizona State. 1982. Imagining future nuclear wars prevents them Martin 82 Brian Martin. 1997 “Imagining Nuclear Weapons: Hiroshima. how do we represent such death in our religious and cultural systems of "just war" and other meanings. harder moral issues have been with us since 1945. It is my belief that preparation for nuclear war by the peace movement would reduce the chance of nuclear war by providing a visible threat to the otherwise unchallenged continuance of existing political institutions. Associate Professor of Religion. in contrast to our own critics' insistence on the opposite.org/cgi/reprint/LXV/1/1. is it permissible under certain conditions? If so. http://jaar.
the yellow-red of the Sahara and the Arabian desert.” Ballantine Books. then by rockets in brief ballistic flight. Mariners had painstakingly mapped the coastlines of the continents. From this vantage point. The Apollo pictures of the whole Earth conveyed to multitudes something well known to astronomers: On the scale of worlds—to say nothing of stars or galaxies—humans are inconsequential. While almost everyone is taught that the Earth is a sphere with all of us somehow glued to it by gravity. Just barely peeking out at the top is the Mediterranean Sea. not ourselves: We are too small and our statecraft is too feeble to be seen by a spacecraft between the Earth and the Moon. It has become a[n] kind of icon of our age. Tanzania. You can make out the blue of the ocean. where the earliest humans lived. September 1997 “Pale Blue Dot: a Vision of the Human Future in Space. a thin film of life on an obscure and solitary lump of rock and metal. Observing earth as a whole dissolves the reasoning for classifying by nations. and at last by orbiting spacecraft—giving a perspective like the one you achieve by positioning your eyeball about an inch above a large globe.11. Geographers had translated these findings into charts and globes. the reality of our circumstance did not really begin to sink in until the famous frame-filling Apollo photograph of the whole Earth—the one taken by the Apollo 17 astronauts on the last journey of humans to the Moon. . There's Antarctica at what Americans and Europeans so readily regard as the bottom. overall badass). and then all of Africa stretching up above it: You can see Ethiopia. around which so much of our global civilization emerged. not our reworking of the Earth's surface. And yet there is no sign of humans in this picture. and Kenya. not our machines. CARL SAGAN (Professor of astronomy and space sciences at cornell university. At top right are Saudi Arabia and what Europeans call the Near East. our obsession with nationalism is nowhere in evidence. the brown-green of forest and grassland. Photographs of tiny patches of the Earth had been obtained first by balloons and aircraft.
Whether an alien scientist newly arrived at the outskirts of our solar system could reliably deduce oceans and clouds and a thickish atmosphere is less certain. the only home we've ever known. ever king and peasant. Our posturings. In other words. ideologies. Because the pronuclear camp argues that nuclear weapons are necessary for survival in the face of international threat. the bluer it seems. but chiefly for different reasons.2. 2. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that. a short line of sight through air seems perfectly transparent. Had the picture been taken a little earlier or a little later. the computer is the brains of this operation. smeared or unsmeared—even through the high-resolution telescope aboard Voyager. antinuclear rhetoric based on the need for human survival can either lead to a stalemate position or actually strengthen the other side. In order to emphasize the horrors of nuclear war and thereby discourage people from supporting pronuclear policies. it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another.” Configurations. our imagined self-importance. Why? Because the air scatters blue light around much better than it does red. brighter than most of the stars. And the white? The Earth on an average day is about half covered with white water clouds. If you have tens of meters of the stuff or more. "the identification of a 'values' realm--limited but available for political debate" (p. yes. at least in the near future. and increases peace between us CARL SAGAN (Professor of astronomy and space sciences at cornell university. they could become momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Like it or not. is blue. accordingly. like the other planets. In our obscurity. From this distant vantage point. Mercury. which Lacan calls the rhetorical trope of absence and desire. Perhaps the most obvious manifestation of this desire for widespread robot mentality was the popular "Just Say No" campaign. and/or too far away. in glory and triumph. everyone you ever heard of. every teacher of morals.” Ballantine Books.” every "supreme leader. 61). in order to argue that "the computer and the robot are the metonymic processes we use to deal with the nuke" (p. Doctoral student in English Literature at the University of Iowa. exhibiting absolute efficiency and self-control--exactly the qualities necessary to operate well a nuclear arsenal . fictional humanoid robots have become the model for the ideal human. On it everyone you love. It absorbs slightly more red light than blue. inventor and explorer. and economic doctrines. From this distance the planets seem only points of light. So here they are—a mosaic of squares laid down on top of the planets and a background smattering of more distant stars. partly from the sky. n this particular epoch. September 1997 “Pale Blue Dot: a Vision of the Human Future in Space. To me. In one chapter Chaloupka uses Jacques Lacan's analysis of metonymy. every hunter and forager. There Speaking about nuclear wars is necessary to out the secrecy that surround the nuclear establishment James. They are like the planets seen with the naked eye from the surface of the Earth—luminous dots. decreases our self-importance. 45). We were able to photograph not only the Earth. instead of encouraging opposition to nuclear weapons. Look again at that dot. and Mars and Pluto were too small. Over a period of months the Earth. It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. We can explain the wan blueness of this little world because we know it well. The aggregate of our joy and suffering. for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand. Think of the endless visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner. what's on it. the bomb the muscle. every human being who ever was. some people would claim that nuclear weapons are "unspeakable": the horrors of nuclear war go beyond the human capacity for description and such a war would leave no survivors to describe it. to become automatic message machines. hopeful child. Two of the antinuclear positions that he criticizes are the acceptance of survival as a universal value and the idea that nuclear war is unspeakable. for instance. The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. Observing the whole of earth creates a bond between all of us. In its physicality. there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. Nevertheless—something Leonardo da Vinci excelled at portraying —the more distant the object. Settle. the innermost. There is nowhere else. every corrupt politician. to which our species could migrate. Because of the reflection of sunlight off the spacecraft. But it's just an accident of geometry and optics. in all this vastness. was lost in the glare of the Sun. their images were smeared because of spacecraft motion. how fervent their hatreds. as if there were some special significance to this small world. In the same way. . Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. Visit. A large portion of the book is devoted to demonstrating how thoroughly and covertly nuclear weapons influence our lives. are challenged by this point of pale light. That's home. arguing that it has failed to have a larger impact because it shares with pronuclear forces both a "confidence in a world that passes naturally into speech and writing" and. the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe. Uranus and Neptune are so dim that to record their presence required long exposures. This is how the planets would look to an alien spaceship approaching the Solar System after a long interstellar voyage. overall badass). the Earth seems to be sitting in a beam of light. has silenced the voices of protest and abetted the secrecy surrounding nuclear weapons management. and whether. That's us. everyone you know. the Earth might not seem of any particular interest.12. but especially children. and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot. 1994 (Clair. 13 The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. The Sun emits its radiation equitably in all directions. every young couple in love. You cannot tell merely by looking at one of these dots what it's like. "in the now out-dated metaphor of rationalism. every "superstar. thousands of confident religions. Neptune. And why that cerulean color? The blue comes partly from the sea. That's here." every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there—on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam. But for us. what its past has been. every moth and father. would seem to move among the stars. 367-371) Chaloupka first analyzes the politics of the antinuclear movement. anyone lives there. more tellingly. which refused to analyze the cultural conditions that make drug use an attractive alternative to many and instead asked us all. not yet. too dimly lit. So the bluish cast of this dot comes from its thick but transparent atmosphere and its deep oceans of liquid water. the robot is the encoded sign of nuclearism" (p. how frequent their misunderstandings. how eager they are to kill one another. lived out their lives. the red light is absorbed out and what gets reflected back to space is mainly blue. “Book Reviews. but also five other of the Sun's nine known planets. every creator and destroyer of civilization. xiii). character-building experience. there would have been no sunbeam highlighting the Earth. But Chaloupka argues that the idea of unspeakability. it's different. At the same time that industrial robots are replacing humans in factories. While water in a glass is transparent. every hero and coward.
VI and so forth may be repulsive. revenge. suppressing dissent. during the war. Vol. peace activists need to be prepared to act during nuclear crisis and nuclear war and afterwards. The rise of Nazism after World War I should point to the danger. The health and welfare of the general population is a secondary consideration. and defence against challenges raised by the native population. Preparation for nuclear war by the peace movement could increase the chances of success in struggles for social justice. mobilisation of sympathetic groups. During and after a nuclear crisis or war. 1982 (Brian. During World War II. but cannot be discounted solely for that reason. mainly important in its effects on the two primary goals. for continuity of official decision-making apparatuses and communications. It is not for lack of anything better to do that nuclear strategists have elaborated numerous scenarios for nuclear war. and for quelling 'civil disturbances'. This emphasis is reflected in preparations for the survival of key officials. Scenarios for World Wars IV. “How the Peace Movement Should be Preparing for Nuclear War.( ) Preparing for nuclear war increase the success of struggles for social justice AND a nuclear war would bolster global statism and ignorance of marginal populations Martin. The same pattern is being and will be replayed prior to and during a nuclear war.” Bulletin of Peace Proposals. pp. and using many other mechanisms familiar to us today. This has two components: continued defence against the outside enemy. . post-war political and economic considerations played a large role in many decisions. V. efforts to 'do better next time' and not to be caught unprepared. a nuclear war will not be the end of war but the beginning of the age of many nuclear wars. If these developments are to be opposed. during a period of chaos in the rich countries resulting from nuclear war or nuclear crisis. Media and Communication at the University of Wollongong. Professor of Social Sciences in the School of Social Sciences. In the absence of any significant countervailing force. especially in the poor countries. creating scapegoats. No. military and otherwise. 149-159) The primary objective of national security bureaucracies in the event of nuclear war is survival of the state apparatus. there will also be strong government and citizen pressures for retaliation. several key groups in the US developed plans for the post-war world. More generally. powerful interest groups will attempt to sway developments through management of the news. 1982. 13. Although nuclear war may lead to mass revulsion. recovery and future wars. 2.
“the revolution in permanence”. although. when TMT subjects become aware of their own mortality salience-induced aggressivity and derogation. this difference will be enforced. a retreat is effected further into the systems that Terror Management Theory has shown result in a derogation of difference. or totalitarian madness and the horrors of a fresh gulag). even in the willful choosing of death. as well as the conflict between ‘mortal’ autonomy and ‘immortal’ dependence/identification with the nation. increased investment in social systems of self-esteem. Is it not preferable to take up one’s own death as a future inevitability that cannot be prevented. Nonetheless. it may still be possible to hope for a willful release of the fist caught in the trap of ideological denial. the ethics of the antagonist. This is what Zupancic calls the “ethics of fantasy” (“the ethics of desire is the ethics of fantasy (or what we have also called the ethics of the master)” (Zupancic. ( ) Their K of the death drive is over-confident and hazardous. Instead of Žižek’s “suicidal” politico-ethical Act that aims directly for the Real. or peace through perpetual war? The ideological system that seeks to escape from the horrors of our century forms these terrors as its own traumatic kernel that is both reviled and needed as a lack. fundamentalism and fascism. Boucher 2002 (Geoff. and it is. The ‘death drive. the Sadean dungeons of Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.” through exemplary acts of violence or extraordinary acts of transgression. Gifford 2003 (James. In reinforcing the symbolic order and enjoying the symptoms of its denial of its Real.Death Drive Our over-identification argument: We should acknowledge and fight against the death drive – but we should not assume it explains-away every condition. an ethical mirror image of the political “dilemma” of postmodern post-politics (either postmarxian acceptance of the impossibility/undesirability of revolution.’ there resides another level of ideology that denies the willful choosing of the inevitable as a means to control and a creation of the symbolic order that buffers against psychosis-inducing terror and control over the detrimental aspects of this buffer. leaves any resolution of the real problem of Salos and Sadean dungeons without an outlet via choice. Becoming conscious of the effects of the self-preservation instinct make such mechanisms and processes subject to conscious will. Žižek’s “psychotic” politico-ethical Act that aims directly for the Real can only terminate in a terrorist ethics.htm) The answer. January. and the lethal/suicidal immersion in the Thing?”). rather than mistakenly pursue death and make it imminent by symbolically destroying it? In the same manner. The Politics of Universal Truth. since these horrific atrocities are within an ideology that is driven by them. J Spot: Journal of Social and Political Thought. Their over-identification only feeds the drive – we’re the best middle ground. “do your duty!” Modern ethics involves neither the direct immersion in the death drive (which leads to Žižek’s ethical decisionism and political voluntarism). Without a realization of the will and the self. 2:1. rather than willfully choosing its future inevitability while continuing to live.htm) To refuse the willful control over the inevitable that intrudes on the symbolic order is either an acceptance of psychosis (in Žižek’s formulation) or worse.mira. Terror Management subjects cease to aggress and invest in buffers in the same way.’ the instinctual desiring of the inevitable monster that I have shown to be a non-instinctual symbolic means to self-preservation.net/~deller/ethicalpolitics/geoff-boucher/2002/zizek.. of maintaining the gap. the ethics of nationalism. In the case of the inevitable. http://home. by becoming aware of their anxiety as the source of their aggressivity.yorku. nor the avoidance of the drive in a return to the ethics of the master. in the final analysis. The Left does not need . Cultural Studies Professor U Melbourne. “[we’re] not really prepared to integrate it into [our] symbolic universe.ca/jspot/5/jgifford. the ethical act involves symbolic suicide . to Žižek’s question (“is not Lacan’s entire theoretical edifice torn between these two options: between the ethics of desire/Law. hence our denial of mortality leads us to pursue and chase our own death. Extinction is not a certain outcome in the world of the death drive. than one’s physical destruction (and the destruction of others)? There is a strange comfort in knowing that you are the instrument of the historical process. the relegation of the will to non-existence in the symbolic order in which Žižek’s writings function. confrontation with one’s mortality). they negate the unconscious transaction between the anxiety buffer and the fear of its lack (i. January 29. http://www. 2000: 254)). then. becomes both the denial itself and the means to avoiding the endless retreat into ideology. is “No”. Zupancic’s statement of the ethics of the Real demonstrates that “not giving way on one’s desire” (the ethical maxim of psychoanalysis) is compatible with the modern moral imperative. Who wants to end up as an excremental remainder on a “planet without a visa. and the misdefinition of this as ‘instinctual. and in a politics that desperately attempts to “galvanise” the historical process through the “propaganda of the deed. Moreover. can we undo the Salos of a bombed out Afghanistan. For. for interventions in the symbolic fields of culture and politics). We make the best predictions we can – and their extremism races towards dangerous and convenient path.a political intervention guided by an ethical imperative that brooks no exceptions and is prepared to go all the way in its impossible demand. Simply put. and very possibly reckless behaviours involving destruction and violence.” having sacrificed everything and yet still having no absolute guarantee that you have done the right thing? By contrast with the ethics of the drive. it is perhaps too much to hope that Žižek’s formulation will include ‘enjoy your will’ or an abandonment of the symbolic order in the self-creation (traum) of the Real. PhD Candidate at the U of Alberta. As with the ecological crisis. no matter what Salo-like nightmares are created to defend the individual from the awareness of the crouching beast. in an ethics that substitutes violence in the Real for the dialectics of the spirit (that is. is not symbolic suicide infinitely more anxiety provoking than real suicide. Looking 35). This is a false statement of the alternatives. and that is why [we] continue to act as if ecology is of no lasting consequence for [our] everyday li[ves]” (Žižek.e. “What Is Žižek So Afraid Of?: Exemplification Against The Existential Hordes”. I suggest. In contrast.
Reich has already exposed a predecessor of the idea of "constitutive lack" . Lacanian metaphysics conceal Lacanians' encouragement of a variety of neurosis complicit with oppressive social realities. in the form of "aphanisis" or "subjective destitution". but a creative adaptation. Dominick LaCapra offers a similar but distinct critique to my own. Reich has already provided a rebuttal of "primordial masochism". Theory and the Arts. but is actually immune from empirical confirmation and refutation. when they begin to use language and strive to attain self-consciousness. as a radical gesture which reveals the essence of the self and breaks the constraints of an oppressive reality108. The "death instinct" is connected to an idea of primordial masochism which. absolutely! Up to. 'enjoyment (jouissance) is not to be equated with pleasure: enjoyment is precisely "pleasure in unpleasure". We no more need to imitate Lenin than we need to rush out and join one of the splinters of the Fourth International (and imitate Trotsky). Theory and Event. Human beings. of the political consequences of the dialectical unfolding of ethical life. This entailed the necessity of criticizing the social conditions which created the neuroses . managing editor of the journal October.e. which. .is suspended. which depends on there being a universal moment at which active desire .such an ethics. inorganic. and the later Barthes was partly responsible for this. In other words. 8:1.leads to a critical sociological stance107. enjoyment is located "beyond the pleasure principle"'110.the Freudian "death instinct" . He provides a detailed clinical rebuttal of the idea of the "death instinct" which is equally apt as an attack on Lacanians (who seem unaware of Reich's intervention). a new Lacanianism has risen in a more potent form in the writings of the prolific Slovenian theoretician Slavoj Zizek. 29-30) Structuralism is now out of fashion. one confirms to the patient his [sic] alleged will to suffer'114. It is identical with the Lacanian concept of jouissance or enjoyment. and including. an ethics of the Real) can ground a politics in the traditional sense of supplying an Absolute Guarantee of the ethical validity of every political act. he says. ProjectMuse) Guattari's critique of psychoanalysis makes clear the myths which underlie it. and finalized on objectives of conformity to social norms'104.but not without criteria (such as universality and the treatment of persons as ends.. “repeating Lenin”. contingent attitude which finds satisfaction in the process of selfblockage109. There are no “short-circuits” between ethics and politics. there is a relation of singular articulation. 'Such hypotheses as are criticised here are often only a sign of therapeutic failure. an attempt which gets in the way of fact-finding about these phenomena105. the unconscious is always already there.a necessity which the hypothesis of a biological will to suffer had circumvented'106. U of Nottingham.which is to say. We accept that there are many politics minimally compatible with modern ethics. Malcolm. Zizek bases his interpretation of Lacan on the Hegelian dictum that the use of Language that singles out human beings emerges against the background of an essential abyss of nonmeaning. The death instinct is typified by Žižek as a pathological (in the Kantian sense). Primordial masochism is therefore central to the Lacanian concept of the Real. In Reich's view.to attribute neurosis to frustrations with origins in the social system . For him. claiming that Lacanian and similar theories induce a post-traumatic compulsion repetition or an 'endless. quasi-transcendental grieving that may be indistinguishable from interminable melancholy'112. since enjoyment is 'the only "substance" acknowledged by psychoanalysis'. one that is closer to Lacan’s own surrealist roots. genetically programmed. in the guise of "shooting at" or "beating" oneself. 'Psychoanalysis transforms and deforms the unconscious by forcing it to pass through the grid of its system of inscription and representation. A politics of Universal Truth? Yes. Zizek’s diagnosis is wrong and locks in oppressive power structures Robinson 2005 (Andrew. Politically. Nor should we imagine that an ethics (a concept of ethical life. Žižek in particular advocates masochism. No such thing as the death drive. was denounced by orthodox Freudians as communist propaganda. Lacan rewrites Freud’s psychological theory of unconscious agency as a philosophical theory that describes the essential or constitutive paradox of self-representation. of invention. Regardless of what one thinks of Reich's specific account of the origins of masochism.as a denial that "I don't know".” in the grand metaphysical style of Hegel. One could compare this remark to Butler's claim that Žižek 'defends the trauma of the real. Similarly. it designates the paradoxical satisfaction procured by a painful encounter with a Thing that perturbs the equilibrium of the pleasure principle. although the masochistic gesture is present in all Lacanian theorists. For psychoanalysis. the thesis of primordial masochism provides a mystifying cover for the social forces which cause and benefit from the contingent emergence of masochistic attachments (i. whereas Reich's alternative . and refuse to substitute moral judgement for the rational cognition of alternative claims (“moralism”). structured. The relevance of Reich's critique to the political theory of constitutive lack is striking. nor any “deductions. the masochistic tendencies Freud associates with the "death instinct" are secondary drives arising from anxiety. this reactive desire is supposed to be ontologically prior to active desire. what is crucial is his critique of the idea of a death drive. and are attributable to 'the disastrous effect of social conditions on the biopsychic apparatus. and 'the subject fully "exists" only through enjoyment'111. It is. The death drive is far-less encompassing than the Aff believes. over and against a different kind of threat'115. Instead. It is also the core of the self. between ethics and politics. not means). In Reich's view. a metaphysical attempt to explain as yet inexplicable phenomena. Wittgenstein. Thus. not for a greater or delayed pleasure. For if one explains masochism by a death instinct. PhD in Political Theory. we accept an infinite responsibility for the unforeseeable consequences of our acts . p. We act without final guarantees . One of the theories that has replaced structuralism in the study of the arts is Lacanian psychoanalysis. Furthermore. But repetition entails a minimum of difference: our repetition of Lenin will not be a slavish imitation of the past (up to and including a rehabilitation of Stalin!).sometimes given the slightly misleading name of the "pleasure principle" .e. Zizek’s theory: a) is an unproven assertion b) ignores the ability of human reason and choice to steer society Allen & Turvey 2001 (Richard. Once associated with a broadly structuralist analysis of culture. a primary reactive desire). Lacanian theory has the aura of a scientific theory that makes empirical claims by borrowing the language of psychological and Linguistic theories. recurs throughout Lacanian political theory.. It is that it is the best. masochism operates as a relief at a lesser pain which operates as armouring against anxiety about an underlying trauma113. The idea of the "death instinct" leads to a cultural philosophy in which suffering is assumed to be inevitable. The leftwing claim is not that socialism is the only ethical politics. but out of a direct desire for unpleasure (i. of the empty nothingness that is organic life. paradoxically given Žižek's claims to radicalism. negate or conceal this essential abyss of nothingness by entering into the pre-existing structure of language that is concrete. Associate Professor of Cinema Studies at NYU. sadistic power apparatuses).
For Zizek. proposes that what is distinctive about human beings is their capacity to use language. or activities such as making and responding to art. It is also irrefutable: therein lies its appeal. Indeed. that determines the real nature of intentional action.e. authoritarian qualities Zizek attributes to political institutions and culture: it is universal and inescapable. There the similarities abruptly end. like Wittgenstein. in particular. For Zizek. ‘What we call “culture” is. .in its very ontological status. the form in which the “death drive” assumes its positive existence’ (Zizek 1992: 54). art influenced by Lacan and the influences upon Lacan such as Hegel and Freud. Zizek (after Lacan).. However. reasons and concepts that are woven into them in order to claim that all intentional behaviour has one and the same function: to express the death drive or the conversion of life into death. This abyss of nothingness (called ‘the Real’) forms a traumatic core at the heart of human consciousness and culture that always threatens to disrupt the inert structure of human civilization that its concealment serves to make possible. Zizek’s metaphysical Freudianism involves stepping outside intentional human actions and the framework of ‘rules’. is once again that they are a species of intentional action. what defines language use. the only way in which the nature of human behaviour can be thus defined is by explaining it in terms of a single underlying condition or state.inert and external. Human consciousness and its products. But the significance of such works are trivialized and misunderstood once they are mobilized as ‘proof’ of an allencompassing theory of human behaviour. this theory has precisely the compulsory. whose role in sustaining the social structure through a negative force or pressure is thereby only augmented and made more insistent. Of course.. utterly invisible and essentially unknowable to the human agent. thus embody a subjection to an external and therefore alien authority. This subjection is at once essential to concealing the abyss of nothingness that is organic life and. the reign of the dead over life. some art may indeed allegorize this picture of the human condition. For Wittgenstein. including culture. is only made possible and sustained by the existence of that concealed abyss and the ‘pressure’ exerted by it. at the same time. the ego and its social and cultural analogues grow ever more rigid and paranoid in order to prevent the irruption of ‘the Real’. i.
wickedness. attempting to disintegrate biological. Aggression can be regarded as neutral energy. both on a clinical level and on a social and political level. between affirmation and negation: And now. We can conclude that the thesis of inherent aggression does not necessarily lead to ethical determinism. So although “there is no question of getting rid entirely of human aggressive impulses”. This struggle is what all life essentially consists of… 6 But the civilisatory process does not go hand in hand with the promotion of happiness. but rather how this aggression can be channelled to nondestructive activities and turned into a positive energy source. psychological.net/Carel. Human development evolved out of this struggle between Eros and destruction.5 In Civilisation and its Discontents Freud ties the dualistic model of the life and death drives to the question of war and civilisation in order to explain civilisation as a process of sublimation and intellectual control over instinctual life. The interpretation of this assumption is what will actually give content to Freud’s claims. as admitting that we are indeed born evil. Department of Philosophy at the U of Essex. The idea that people can be totally satisfied and thus released from the need for violence is for Freud a naive illusion. families and nations into one human unity.pdf) This theory of the death drive has been conceived as the height of Freud’s pessimism. in human behaviour and psychic processes. Civilisation is an evolutionary process that develops through the action of Eros. which cannot be eliminated. but can be diverted or sublimated. This flexibility in direction and aim means that aggression is not necessarily harmful. can actually offer a solution to the problem of innate aggression. nor inherently evil. Freud’s initial step is to try and overcome the resistance to acknowledging the fact that we contain aggressive tendencies. The way out lies in the fact that aggression is a force whose objects can be changed and direction reversed. I claim.They totalize the death drive itself – it’s not always channeled into failure or violence Carel 2001 (Havi. between the instinct of life and the instinct of destruction as it works itself out in the human species. so the death drive is no longer a destructive force whose antidote is Eros. the meaning of the evolution of civilization is no longer obscure to us. This idea is reinforced by abandoning the dualistic model. It must present the struggle between Eros and Death. as the question of how to handle our aggression is the one that has practical implications. Freud has already concluded that violence and aggression cannot be extirpated from human existence. and social unities. . The death drive is an inherent tendency. resulting in a tame but unhappy social order. The first step is to acknowledge its presence in life. we can control aggression via sublimation and a strengthening of the superego. as a resource that can be implemented to ethically diverse aims. but rather a fundamental human force. striving to unite people. But is this the only ethical position that can be deduced from the death drive? This same death drive. but nonetheless not uncontrollable. Against this synthetic drive stands the opposite destructive force. I think. So human aggression is innate. which can be used for various purposes. Aggression can also be conceptualised as neutral energy. In this sense the ethical question is not whether aggression can be abolished from the human psyche. a will to power. “Born to be Bad: Is Freud’s Death Drive the Source of Human Evilness?” http://www.
Bartleby rather articulates an active preference for the negative. And he is right to work towards a theory that can relate the political and economic levels. the scrivener who says. and simply let it illumine all that it can illumine.vanderbilt. Žižek gives no legislative agenda for a Bartleby administration. Žižek’s Bartleby does not offer a preliminary.Oedipal order’s mandate for pleasure. antiracist. What would be the shape of a politics of “the Bartleby parallax”? Žižek acknowledges the challenge: “The difficulty of imagining the New is the difficulty of imagining Bartleby in power” (382). in focusing primarily on consumption. like the Bartleby of Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri. feminist. It is not his magnum opus. Such forms of resistance miss their deep symbiosis with the hegemonic order they oppose.” Bartleby does not say. On a deeper level. Žižek’s complex would be stronger if he unhooked it from an attempt to relate political and economic levels. The Real of his politics— like the Real of his theology and psychology—is a void. It can feel good to smash the window of a Starbucks or get arrested at the School of the Americas. Smith—the most recent review of Zizek— is assistant professor of ethics and society as well as director of the Program in Theology and Practice at Vanderbilt Divinity School – Review of Zizek’s The Parallax View – Political Theology – 10. But perhaps Žižek still helps the reader imagine Bartleby in power. providing the material to keep it in motion” (335). But Žižek associates narcissistic projects of self-fulfillment and regulatory systems of domination too declaration of a post-Oedipal neatly with the political and economic levels. Žižek’s argument would also be stronger if he noted its limits. Žižek’s associations of self-realization and the economic level miss the intense biopolitical domination that is often involved in the production of consumer goods in global sweatshops.pdf Žižek’s analysis has tremendous explanatory power. It is instead the negative content of that resistance. A post-Oedipal complex might dominate much of Europe and North America. are not so different from other transgressive pleasures that promise self-realization. acts of resistance conform to the post. antiglobalist…) demands.” Žižek writes of Simon Critchley’s proposal for a politics of impossible demands. and has to be hyperactive all the time just to fascinate people enough so that they don’t notice that there is nothing. for then his action would become dependent on those dominant desires for its meaning and direction. brilliant. It is the long. In Žižek’s voice. a desire that lives without reference to any object. nor even his refusal to write one. Ted A. “I do not want to”—he does not simply negate dominant desires. especially in demands for recognition of identity. respectively. And these pleasures. “All that is needed is a slight shift in our perspective. his prescriptions are necessarily elusive. but it does not fit as readily with whatever is emerging in China—a matter of no small significance for theories of political economy at the beginning of the twenty-first century. And. and to criticize Badiou’s exclusive focus on the political. ground-clearing refusal. In an interview for a film about his life Žižek expressed his fear that he is “nothing who pretends all the time to be somebody. andtheir presence—loud but ineffectual—provides the dominant order with a safe form of legitimacy. He is especially savvy in naming the power of the post-Oedipal order to co-opt what looks like radical dissent. . BUT IT IS NOT THAT SIMPLE – their totalizing claims and don’t explain the whole world.edu/jspui/bitstream/1803/3152/1/SmithReviewParallaxView10.” Žižek’s worry about himself is at once the harshest rather judgment on The Parallax View and the clearest statement of its power. indirectly. “I would prefer not to. Žižek calls for a politics that does not just “say no to Empire. If Žižek’s description of the political and economic orders is powerful but limited. “I would prefer not to” is not a prelude to properly political resistance. compulsive embodiment of his preference for the negative.2_2009.” but also refuses to enjoy “the rumspringa of resistance. looks like an internal process of feeding the machine of power. and all the activity of ‘resistance. The dominant order provides acts of resistance with meaning and direction. The icon of this refusal is Herman Melville’s Bartleby. Such associations miss the projects for selfrealization carried out on the political level. Žižek implies.2 (2009) 365-369 http://discoverarchive.Extremes are wrong: They’ll say “psychoanalysis explains every internal link” or that “solving one item fixes the entire death drive”. all the forms of resisting which help the system to reproduce itself by ensuring our participation in it…” (383). “The deadlock of ‘resistance’ brings us back to the topic of parallax. by writing something that looks for all the world like Bartleby’s book.’ of bombarding those in power with impossible ‘subversive’ (ecological.
” Inasmuch as nation—states in today’s world are interdependent. http://www. and destructive. Realism ignores the relevance of the human needs for community as well as morality .ca/jspot/5/jgifford. What Moves Men: The Realist Theory of International Relations and Its Judgment of Human Nature.And. can be “cured. leads realism down the slippery slope toward a restrictive and one-sided view of human motivation. through complex processes of identification. my reading of Žižek’s discussion of mortality (where death becomes both the symbolically desired necessity and the prohibited impossibility) hinges on Lacan’s early assertion (creatively out of context in my reading) that “anxiety is born with life” (Clark 126). They makes sweeping claims about the human condition that call for more than a Slovenian dude that’s read his share of Lacan. As a consequence. and achievement at least roughly correspond to the motives of fear.htm) To reiterate the problem of anxiety here. flies in the face of the entire discipline of psychology. for one. Studies matter Not to be rude – but their authors aren’t psychologists. vol. January. the desire for honor. This pessimism is so strong that it appears at times even incompatible with other elements of realist thought. which. plays a crucial role in the establishment of community. and social evolution. and that socially destructive behavior. if we consider that it is an important emotional element in.26 They point out that the interests and goals of human beings are not simply attributes of individuals but are developed in social interaction and can. While such approaches also take note of the problems that affect social interaction. whose very raison d’être is that “human nature” contains a significant range of dependent variables. an individual’s identification with others.yorku. II. It should be noted that. learning. have traditionally been disregarded by realism. at least economically. consciousness almost by definition implies choice. Claims about the inevitability of apocalypse within the current death drive are suspect—their determinism ignores human agency and blocks personal freedom. For example. their view. the motive of achievement could actually be expected to encourage states to value their “reputations” more highly. realist theory adopts a view of all three of these motives as essentially divisive. Aggressive instincts are countered by the human need for social interaction and the political choice to cooperate) Freyberg-Inan 2004 (Annette. We have seen that. perhaps as a result of sampling error.25 In this view. This strategy. realists generally fail to take note of the fact that noncooperative behavior is often in the long run self-defeating and thus ill-compatible with the assumption of rationality. p. and especially its subfield of psychiatry. has adopted a dim view of human nature and a pessimistic outlook on possibilities for sustained international peace and cooperation. and cooperation.” The very notion of “character” implies that any individual personality is composed of various traits. and driving force to support. some nonaggressive. The best studies disprove the pessimistic readings of human nature. or pride. most psychological studies of motivation accede that needs or instincts function as “natural” motives only as long as actors are not conscious of their impact. affiliation. as well as the operation of altruism. which introduce social and cooperative elements into the image of human nature. When death anxiety or the more general terror of existence is seen as intrinsic to the . is considerably closer to the view of human nature that informs political idealist approaches. the views on the range of important motives that are more common in psychological and political decision-making approaches include the desire for affiliation. Claiming violence and destruction to be inevitable is wrong. or material success. which is exposed by Thucydides. J Spot: Journal of Social and Political Thought. sympathy. Assuming the stability of human nature. as a consequence. “What Is Žižek So Afraid Of?: Exemplification Against The Existential Hordes”. or community. Fixed traits are found by psychologists to be minimal and to extend not far beyond instincts. By contrast. and that the strength of any particular trait varies and can be affected by experience or treatment. realists choose to disregard a host of contradictory findings. in turn. It is also worth noting that many psychological approaches view man as an inherently social being. in turn. empathy.23 This is because individuals and states are bound to interact with others not only once and never again but often on a continuing basis. which requires them to cultivate a reputation for being acceptable “players. Such identification. PhD Candidate @ U of Alberta. The fact that individuals can develop various overlapping identities and an inclusive sense of community at least counteracts the competitive and hostile aspects of Hobbesian vainglory. some aggressive. which. create interpersonal and communal bonds. number 1. for example. shape individual preferences and strategies. (Their authors take one-sided views which discount the full range of evidence about human nature. which emphasizes the possibilities of adaptation. In addition. and the quest for profit. its judgments of the possibilities for inter-human identification. 112113) It is interesting to see that the three basic motivational categories identified by McClelland and others correspond to the three motives of the Athenian thesis. Civil Education Project Visiting Faculty Fellow at the University of Bucharest. by insisting on their view of human nature.’2 Such motives. (James. are extremely pessimistic.27 In fact. Gifford 2003.24 Neither does the motive of pride. Thus it does not have to operate in the dysfunctionally competitive ways predicted by realism. their judgment of its possibilities tends to be vastly more optimistic than that which characterizes realist theory. They certainly do not include a choice of particular goals or strategies to achieve them. competitive. as well as for human learning and social progress. The needs for power. This perspective contradicts the deterministic view of human motivation which is propagated by realism.
against an alternative system of thought that removes the death-denying function of his Lacanian project within the cultural symbolic system. whether conscious or unconscious. Žižek’s reactive formation of the willful encompassing of the inevitable parallels his transposition of the feared to the desired as an aspect of drive theory. and in particular to the function of the will in choosing the inevitable anxiety-filled event in order to overcome being dominated by the inevitable . unlike Žižek’s approach. hence we may read the refutation of the will as a distal defense against the dual threat of an increase in the salience of mortality that analyzing such a will entails. adjusts. In Becker’s terms. death becomes that which is willed so as to retain agency (symbolic agency) over it and to control fear.human condition.’ which is irrefutably a core component of our systems of symbolization . Somewhere between the ‘I’ that exists as a network of social identifications. This fundamental support for ego-centric psychoanalysis. In effect. rather than the paradoxical desire for the inevitable that is created ‘obversely’ (to misuse the term) from prohibition. is also deeply sympathetic to the symbolic agency of the ego in willing. which is antithetical to Žižek’s above equation. desires. as well as the intentionality that need not equate to commensurate acts or results. but so too are the repressive reactions. but are renegotiated to accommodate the ‘I. This does not mean that drive theory or the unconscious are discarded. and instincts. linguistic habits. even if it primarily functions unconsciously. the belief in the active will (even if only symbolic ) renders a theory where this deathterror is not only within the domain of the ego. Moreover (and my descent into jargon is temporary). . Unlike drive theory. To this we may add. Žižek’s refutation of the will also functions as the defense of the distal defense itself. and the unconscious series of connections that ‘prompt’ such identifications through drives. the will to overcome and ego-centric psychology leave us a space with which to challenge the capitulation to terror and subsequent derogation and repression. we have an active space to escape evil rather than escape the Real. it must be asserted that such anxiety is derivative of self-reflexivity and is in the domain of the ego. there nonetheless remains a linguistic space where we can ask “what might be said about the individual ‘I’ who makes. and takes responsibility for the[se] identifications” (Altieri 3) .
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