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Althusser's

107

Subjection

event, b u t a c e r t a i n w a y of staging the call, w h e r e the c a l l , as
staged, b e c o m e s d e l i t e r a l i z e d i n the c o u r s e o f its e x p o s i t i o n o r
darstellung. T h e c a l l itself is a l s o f i g u r e d as a d e m a n d to a l i g n
oneself w i t h the l a w , a t u r n i n g a r o u n d (to face the l a w , t o f i n d

'Conscience Doth Make
Subjects of Us A l l "
Althusser's

Subjection

a face for the l a w ? ) , a n d an e n t r a n c e i n t o the l a n g u a g e of selfa s c r i p t i o n — " H e r e I a m " — t h r o u g h the a p p r o p r i a t i o n o f g u i l t .
W h y d o e s subject f o r m a t i o n a p p e a r t o t a k e p l a c e o n l y u p o n
the a c c e p t a n c e o f g u i l t , s o that there i s n o " I " w h o m i g h t asc r i b e a p l a c e t o itself, w h o m i g h t b e a n n o u n c e d i n s p e e c h ,
w i t h o u t first a s e l f - a t t r i b u t i o n of g u i l t , a s u b m i s s i o n to the l a w
t h r o u g h a n a c c e p t a n c e o f its d e m a n d for c o n f o r m i t y ? T h e o n e
w h o t u r n s a r o u n d i n r e s p o n s e t o the c a l l does n o t r e s p o n d t o
a d e m a n d t o t u r n a r o u n d . T h e t u r n i n g a r o u n d i s a n act that

A l t h u s s e r ' s d o c t r i n e of i n t e r p e l l a t i o n c o n t i n u e s to s t r u c t u r e

is, a s i t w e r e , c o n d i t i o n e d b o t h b y the " v o i c e " o f the l a w a n d

c o n t e m p o r a r y debate o n subject f o r m a t i o n , o f f e r i n g a

b y the r e s p o n s i v e n e s s o f the o n e h a i l e d b y the law. T h e " t u r n -

w a y to account for à subject w h o c o m e s i n t o b e i n g as a c o n s e -

i n g a r o u n d " i s a s t r a n g e sort o f m i d d l e g r o u n d ( t a k i n g p l a c e ,

q u e n c e o f l a n g u a g e , yet a l w a y s w i t h i n its t e r m s . T h e t h e o r y o f

p e r h a p s , i n a s t r a n g e sort o f " m i d d l e v o i c e " ) ,

2

w h i c h is de-

i n t e r p e l l a t i o n a p p e a r s to stage a s o c i a l scene in w h i c h a s u b -

t e r m i n e d b o t h b y the l a w a n d the a d d r e s s e e , b u t b y n e i t h e r

ject i s h a i l e d , the subject t u r n s a r o u n d , a n d the subject t h e n

u n i l a t e r a l l y o r e x h a u s t i v e l y . A l t h o u g h there w o u l d b e n o t u r n -

accepts the t e r m s b y w h i c h h e o r she i s h a i l e d . T h i s is, n o

i n g a r o u n d w i t h o u t first h a v i n g b e e n h a i l e d , n e i t h e r w o u l d

d o u b t , a scene b o t h p u n i t i v e a n d r e d u c e d , for the c a l l i s m a d e

there b e a t u r n i n g a r o u n d w i t h o u t s o m e r e a d i n e s s t o t u r n .

b y a n officer o f "the L a w , " a n d t h i s officer i s cast a s s i n g u l a r

B u t w h e r e a n d w h e n d o e s the c a l l i n g o f the n a m e s o l i c i t the

a n d s p e a k i n g . C l e a r l y w e m i g h t object that the " c a l l " a r r i v e s

t u r n i n g a r o u n d , the a n t i c i p a t o r y m o v e t o w a r d i d e n t i t y ? H o w

s e v e r a l l y a n d i n i m p l i c i t a n d u n s p o k e n w a y s , that the scene

a n d w h y does the subject t u r n , a n t i c i p a t i n g the c o n f e r r a l o f

i s n e v e r q u i t e a s d y a d i c a s A l t h u s s e r c l a i m s , b u t these objec-

i d e n t i t y t h r o u g h the s e l f - a s c r i p t i o n o f g u i l t ? W h a t k i n d o f r e -

tions have been rehearsed, a n d " i n t e r p e l l a t i o n " as a doctrine

l a t i o n a l r e a d y b i n d s these t w o s u c h that the subject k n o w s t o

c o n t i n u e s t o s u r v i v e its c r i t i q u e . I f w e a c c e p t that the scene

t u r n , k n o w s that s o m e t h i n g i s t o b e g a i n e d f r o m s u c h a t u r n ?

i s e x e m p l a r y a n d a l l e g o r i c a l , t h e n i t n e v e r needs t o h a p p e n

H o w m i g h t w e t h i n k o f t h i s " t u r n " a s p r i o r t o subject f o r m a -

for its e f f e c t i v i t y t o b e p r e s u m e d . I n d e e d , i f i t i s a l l e g o r i c a l i n

t i o n , a p r i o r c o m p l i c i t y w i t h the l a w w i t h o u t w h i c h n o subject

B e n j a m i n ' s sense, t h e n the p r o c e s s l i t e r a l i z e d b y the a l l e g o r y

e m e r g e s ? T h e t u r n t o w a r d the l a w i s t h u s a t u r n a g a i n s t o n e -

i s p r e c i s e l y w h a t resists n a r r a t i o n , w h a t exceeds the n a r r a -

self, a t u r n i n g b a c k o n o n e s e l f that c o n s t i t u t e s the m o v e m e n t

t i v i z a b i l i t y o f events. I n t e r p e l l a t i o n , o n t h i s a c c o u n t , i s n o t a n

o f c o n s c i e n c e . B u t h o w d o e s the reflex o f c o n s c i e n c e p a r a l y z e

1

t e n t i o n .i d e n t i c a l subject ( A l t h u s s e r cites the utter- ser e x p l i c i t l y i n t r o d u c e s "the C h u r c h " m e r e l y a s a n example o f ance o f the H e b r e w G o d : " I a m that I a m " ) .i d e n t i t y that b e c o m e s the p r e c o n d i t i o n authority. T h o s e e x a m p l e s i n c l u d e : . i t a p p e a r s that i d e o l o g y i n h i s t e r m s s c i e n c e m i g h t d e l i v e r or restore a self to oneness w i t h itself. i n t h i s sense. to c a n n o t b e t h o u g h t e x c e p t t h r o u g h the m e t a p h o r i c s o f r e l i g i o u s the p o s t u l a t i o n o f s e l f . t a k e n together w i t h the ex- 4 I t i s i m p o r t a n t t o r e m e m b e r that the t u r n t o w a r d the l a w i s a m p l e o f r e l i g i o u s a u t h o r i t y t o i l l u s t r a t e the force o f i d e o l - n o t necessitated b y the h a i l i n g . F o r the "I" to l a u n c h its c r i t i q u e . w i t h o u t w h i c h no sub- H o w does t h i s r e l i g i o u s f i g u r a t i o n o f i n t e r p e l l a t i o n r e s t r a i n i n ject c a n exist. a n y u n d o i n g o f the subject w i t h o u t w h i c h the t o u s d e s i r e for the l a w t o m a k e p o s s i b l e its o w n existence. it m u s t first a d v a n c e a n y p o s s i b i l i t y o f c r i t i c a l i n t e r v e n t i o n i n the w o r k - u n d e r s t a n d that the "I" itself i s d e p e n d e n t u p o n its c o m p l i c i - i n g s o f the l a w . a t u r n i n g back u p o n c u l l i n g a n i d e n t i t y t h r o u g h i d e n t i f y i n g w i t h the o n e w h o has o n e s e l f in the sense that N i e t z s c h e d e s c r i b e d in On the Geneal- b r o k e n the law. A l a w cannot proceed? c r i t i c a l r e v i e w o f the l a w w i l l n o t . a l w a y s s t r a n g e l y n a t i n g c a l l that c o m e s f r o m G o d a n d that c o n s t i t u t e s the s u b - i n n o c e n t . law. i t i s c o m p e l l i n g . therefore. a n o r i g i n a l g u i l t that l i m i t e d b y w h a t m i g h t b e u n d e r s t o o d a s a p r i o r d e s i r e for the the l a w p r o m i s e s t o assuage t h r o u g h the c o n f e r r a l o f i d e n t i t y . a s I d e o l o g i c a l State A p p a r a t u s e s " has r e c e i v e d l i t t l e c r i t i c a l at- i t w e r e . a t u r n that figures the subject's u n c r i t i c a l r e l a t i o n to the l a w as a c o n d i - e l u d e s s u b j e c t i v a t i o n e v e n a s i t c o n d i t i o n s it? H o w d o e s t h i s t i o n of subjectivation? T h e one addressed is c o m p e l l e d to t u r n " t u r n " f i g u r e a c o n s c i e n c e that m i g h t b e r e n d e r e d less c o n - t o w a r d the l a w p r i o r t o a n y p o s s i b i l i t y o f a s k i n g a set o f c r i t i - s c i e n t i o u s t h a n A l t h u s s e r w o u l d r e n d e r it? A n d h o w d o e s cal questions: W h o is speaking? W h y s h o u l d I t u r n around? A l t h u s s e r ' s s a n c t i f i c a t i o n o f the scene o f i n t e r p e l l a t i o n m a k e W h y s h o u l d I a c c e p t the t e r m s b y w h i c h I a m h a i l e d ? the p o s s i b i l i t y o f b e c o m i n g a " b a d " subject m o r e r e m o t e a n d T h i s m e a n s that p r i o r t o a n y p o s s i b i l i t y o f a c r i t i c a l u n d e r - less i n c e n d i a r y t h a n i t m i g h t w e l l b e ? s t a n d i n g o f the l a w i s a n o p e n n e s s o r v u l n e r a b i l i t y t o the l a w . e v e n t h o u g h the t e r m .io8 "Conscience D o t h M a k e Subjects o f U s A l l " Althusser's Subjection 109 the c r i t i c a l i n t e r r o g a t i o n o f the l a w a t the s a m e t i m e that i t p r e c e d e s a n d a n t i c i p a t e s the a c c e p t a n c e o f g u i l t . suggests that the t h e o r y of i d e o l o g y is s u p p o r t e d by a l o g i c a l sense. T h i s r e a d i n e s s to accept g u i l t to g a i n a p u r c h a s e s i b i l i t y o f h a v i n g access t o the l a w . A l t h o u g h A l t h u s - the n a m e of a s e l f . i n a less t h a n ogy. i n the a n t i c i p a t i o n o f a n d unelaborated doctrine of conscience. w h i c h i n the p r e c e d i n g s e c t i o n o f the essay. The doctrine of interpellation appears to presuppose a p r i o r e x e m p l i f i e d i n the t u r n t o w a r d the l a w . h o w i s i t that c o n - i d e o l o g i c a l i n t e r p e l l a t i o n . a n d s o " g u i l t " i s p r i o r t o on identity is l i n k e d to a h i g h l y religious scenario of a n o m i - 3 k n o w l e d g e o f the l a w a n d is. t o b e u n d o n e b y the c r i t i q u e that h e o r she p e r f o r m s . a g a i n s t the self). I n d e e d . a passionate c o m p l i c i t y w i t h law. u n d o the force o f The m e n t i o n of conscience in Althusser's "Ideology a n d c o n s c i e n c e u n l e s s the o n e w h o offers that c r i t i q u e i s w i l l i n g . I f the l a w speaks i n c o m p l i c a t e d set o f t h e o l o g i c a l m e t a p h o r s . The final section of "Ideology" is entitled " A n Ex- o f the l i n g u i s t i c c o n s o l i d a t i o n " H e r e I a m " ? ample: The Christian Religious Ideology" and makes explicit Yet h o w m i g h t w e site the v u l n e r a b i l i t y o f s u b j e c t i v a t i o n the e x e m p l a r y status that r e l i g i o u s i n s t i t u t i o n s h a v e o c c u p i e d p r e c i s e l y i n that t u r n ( t o w a r d the l a w . b e c a u s e i t p r o m i s e s i d e n t i t y . the l a w i s b r o k e n p r i o r t o a n y p o s - ogy of Morals. T h e p o s s i b i l i t y o f a c r i t i c a l v i e w o f the l a w i s t h u s ject b y a p p e a l i n g t o a n e e d f o r the l a w .

t h i s n a m i n g c a n n o t b e a c c o m p l i s h e d " S c h o o l . I n t h i s sense. A l t h u s s e r inadvertently assimilates social i t w e r e . most notably. T h e f o r c e of a p o s s i b l e addressee. the e x p l i c i t a n a l o g y b e - c o n s t i t u t i o n o f the subject. n e n t l y b y v i r t u e o f the i m p l i e d a n d c o n t i n u o u s p r e s e n c e i n the b e l i e f i t s e l f a s the i n s t i t u t i o n a l l y r e p r o d u c e d c o n d i t i o n o f i d e - n a m e o f the o n e w h o n a m e s h i m . a n d i n n a m i n g . a n d are e s t a b l i s h e d t e x t u a l l y t h r o u g h r e l i g i o u s m e t a p h o r : the a u - that t u r n i n g i s m e r e l y a s i g n o f a n i n e v i t a b l e s u b m i s s i o n b y t h o r i t y o f the " v o i c e " o f i d e o l o g y . B a p t i s m e x e m p l i f i e s the l i n g u i s t i c t w e e n the " o b v i o u s n e s s o f i d e o l o g y " a n d St. m o v e a n d h a v e o u r G o d n a m e s "Peter. t h i s e x p o s u r e dress. In t h i s sense. A l t h u s s e r has r e c o u r s e t o the e x a m p l e p r i o r a n d e s s e n t i a l c o n d i t i o n o f the f o r m a t i o n o f the subject. i n v a r i a b l y enacts w h a t i t t h e m a - p e a r s t o b e n o " P e t e r " w i t h o u t the n a m e "Peter. " P e t e r " d o e s n o t exist w i t h o u t the n a m e that s u p - 5 t h r o u g h t h i s a r t i c u l a t i o n . I f that s u b m i s s i o n b r i n g s the subject i n t o b e i n g .110 "Conscience Doth M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " Althusser's Subjection m the p u t a t i v e " e t e r n i t y " o f i d e o l o g y . o n e w h i c h r e n d e r s e x p l i c i t w h i c h it is ostensibly illustrated. a r e a d i n e s s w h i c h suggests that o n e is. h o w e v e r . t h e n p o s t u l a t e d v o i c e o f the r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f state a u t h o r i t y : the the n a r r a t i v e that seeks t o t e l l the s t o r y o f that s u b m i s s i o n c a n p o l i c e m a n ' s v o i c e i n the h a i l i n g o f the w a y w a r d p e d e s t r i a n p r o c e e d o n l y b y e x p l o i t i n g g r a m m a r f o r its f i c t i o n a l effects. i n t e r p e l l a t i o n t o the d i v i n e p e r f o r m a t i v e . W i t h i n the t e r m s o f A l t h u s - o l o g y . G o d ' s voice in a f o u n d i n g s u b m i s s i o n for w h i c h n o s u c h scene w o u l d p r o v e the n a m i n g o f Peter ( a n d M o s e s ) a n d its s e c u l a r i z a t i o n i n the a d e q u a t e . b u t g i v e n that l a c k s the p o w e r t o defuse the f o r c e o f i d e o l o g y ." a n d t h i s a d d r e s s establishes G o d a s the b e i n g " ." w i t h o u t a c e r t a i n r e a d i n e s s o r a n t i c i p a t o r y d e s i r e o n the p a r t A l t h o u g h the last s e c t i o n o f the essay seeks t o e x p l i c a t e o f the o n e a d d r e s s e d . a n d the d e i f y i n g c a p i t a l i z a t i o n o f " F a m i l y . a n d t h u s p r o m i s e s n o e n l i g h t e n e d escape f r o m i d e o l o g y I n d e e d . there i s a n a d d r e s s e e p r i o r t o the a d d r e s s . w i t h " H e y y o u there!" T h e n a r r a t i v e that seeks t o a c c o u n t f o r h o w the subject c o m e s I n o t h e r w o r d s . there a p - o w n w r i t i n g . T h e e x a m p l e o f i d e - a l r e a d y i m p l i c a t e d i n the t e r m s o f the a n i m a t i n g m i s r e c o g - o l o g y t h u s a s s u m e s the status o f a p a r a d i g m for t h i n k i n g i d e - n i t i o n b y a n a u t h o r i t y t o w h i c h one subsequently yields. the scene w i t h the p o l i c e i n t e r p e l l a t i o n i n A l t h u s s e r i s d e r i v e d f r o m the e x a m p l e s b y i s a b e l a t e d a n d r e d o u b l e d scene. " a n d "State. the n a m e r e m a i n s a t t a c h e d t o Peter p e r m a 6 s u m i n g the p o s t u r e o f k n e e l i n g g i v e s r i s e o v e r t i m e t o belief. w h e r e b y the i n e v i t a b l e s t r u c t u r e s o f i d e o l o g y perhaps one has already y i e l d e d before one turns a r o u n d . the " v o i c e " o f i n t e r p e l l a t i o n . as a t o c o n s t i t u t e subjects. T o i l l u s t r a t e the p o w e r o f i d e o l o g y p l i e s the l i n g u i s t i c g u a r a n t e e of existence. o f the d i v i n e v o i c e that n a m e s . P a s c a l ' s p r a y e r a s a n i n s t a n c e o f r i t u a l i n w h i c h as- o r i g i n o f P e t e r . A l t h u s s e r ' s the a d d r e s s i s a n a m e w h i c h creates w h a t i t n a m e s . b r i n g s its s u b - there i s a c e r t a i n r e a d i n e s s t o b e c o m p e l l e d b y the a u t h o r i t a - jects i n t o b e i n g . h e c o n c e d e s . " ser's e x a m p l e s . O r o l o g y a s s u c h . T o the extent that the n a m i n g i s a n a d - a n d e x p o s e the e x a m p l e o f r e l i g i o u s a u t h o r i t y ." tizes. " " C h u r c h . I n c l a i m i n g that s o c i a l i d e o l o g y o p e r a t e s i n t i v e i n t e r p e l l a t i o n . a l r e a d y i n r e l a t i o n t o the v o i c e b e f o r e the r e s p o n s e . the " L o g o s " i n w h i c h w e are s a i d t o " l i v e . Yet the f o u n d i n g s u b m i s s i o n that has . the d i v i n e p o w e r o f n a m i n g s t r u c t u r e s i n t o b e i n g p r e s u m e s the g r a m m a t i c a l "subject" p r i o r t o the the t h e o r y o f i n t e r p e l l a t i o n that a c c o u n t s for the i d e o l o g i c a l a c c o u n t o f its genesis. w h i c h o n e i s e s t a b l i s h e d a s a subject p o s i t i o n e d i n l a n g u a g e a s is f i g u r e d as a v o i c e a l m o s t i m p o s s i b l e to refuse. P a u l ' s n o t i o n o f m e a n s b y w h i c h the subject i s c o m p e l l e d i n t o s o c i a l b e i n g . as an analogous way.

is inseparable f r o m a c o n d e m n a t i o n . i n a t e l l i n g r e v e r s a l o f the p o l i c e scene i n " I d e o l o g y . b e c a u s e o f the s u r e o n e ' s o w n existence. o n e that c o m p e l s a s y m p t o m a t i c b e p u r c h a s e d o n l y t h r o u g h a g u i l t y e m b r a c e o f the l a w . the ser suggests that e v e r y text m u s t b e r e a d f o r the " i n v i s i b l e " c o n t i n u a t i o n of the subject's existence. w h e r e r e a d i n g ? In h i s i n t r o d u c t o r y essay to Reading Capital. T h i s c a l l i n g for the p o l i c e i s 8 Is this f o u n d i n g s u b m i s s i o n a k i n d of y i e l d i n g p r i o r to any a peculiar inversion of hailing w h i c h "Ideology" presupposes q u e s t i o n o f p s y c h o l o g i c a l m o t i v a t i o n ? H o w are w e t o u n d e r - w i t h o u t e x p l i c i t l y t h e m a t i z i n g . t o d e l i v e r h i m s e l f u p t o the law. i n w h i c h the m a n o n the f o r m s that r e s p o n s e ? W h y w o u l d the p e r s o n o n the street r e - street calls f o r the p o l i c e r a t h e r t h a n r e s p o n d i n g t o the p o l i c e ' s s p o n d t o " H e y y o u t h e r e ! " b y t u r n i n g a r o u n d ? W h a t i s the call. a m i s r e c o g n i t i o n . then. p e r h a p s m o r e a p p r o p r i a t e l y .M a r i e V i n c e n t r e m a r k s that " a text i s n o t i n t e r - ( a l w a y s a l r e a d y ) y i e l d t o the l a w i n o r d e r t o c o n t i n u e t o as- e s t i n g o n l y b e c a u s e i t i s o r g a n i z e d l o g i c a l l y .112 "Conscience Doth M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " Althusser's Subjection 113 n o t yet r e s o l v e d i n t o the subject w o u l d b e p r e c i s e l y the n o n - be r e a d as the c o m p e l l e d c o n s e q u e n c e of a n a r c i s s i s t i c a t t a c h - n a r r a t i v i z a b l e p r e h i s t o r y o f the subject. in w h i c h he nar- n a r r a t i v e that w o u l d e x p l a i n t h i s r e q u i r e s that the t e m p o r a l i t y rates. for the g r a m m a r o f that n a r r a t i v e p r e s u p p o s e s h o w h e r u s h e d i n t o the street c a l l i n g for the p o l i c e i n o r d e r that there i s n o s u b j e c t i o n w i t h o u t a subject w h o u n d e r g o e s it. c a n l o g i c a l m o d e l a s y m p t o m . " n o t b e t r u e . 7 t o t a l i z a t i o n . a n " a c o u s t i c m i r r o r " — status o f r e l i g i o u s a u t h o r i t y u n d e r s c o r e s the p a r a d o x o f h o w that p e r m i t s the m i s r e c o g n i t i o n w i t h o u t w h i c h the s o c i a l i t y the v e r y p o s s i b i l i t y o f subject f o r m a t i o n d e p e n d s u p o n a p a s - o f the subject c a n n o t b e a c h i e v e d . W i t h o u t e x p l o i t i n g the b i o - s t a n d the p s y c h i c d i s p o s i t i o n a t w o r k a t the m o m e n t i n w h i c h g r a p h i c a l . of his m u r d e r of Hélène. hence. the reliable. " J e a n . A l t h u s - g u i l t g u a r a n t e e s the i n t e r v e n t i o n o f the l a w a n d . I w a n t t o p u r s u e the t h e o r e t i c a l i m p o r t a n c e o f t h i s the p e d e s t r i a n r e s p o n d s t o the l a w ? W h a t c o n d i t i o n s a n d i n - r e v e r s a l o f the scene w i t h the p o l i c e . the v e r y n a r r a t i v e o f subject f o r m a t i o n i n t o q u e s t i o n . a n d the l a w r e - a recent c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f A l t h u s s e r ' s n o t i o n o f " s y m p t o m a t i c quires subjection for subjectivation. T h i s s u b j e c t i v a t i o n is. T h e e x e m p l a r y stage or. an animating reprimand. one m a y r e a d i n g . In "Ideology. . If the subject c a n o n l y that a p p e a r s w i t h i n the w o r l d that t h e o r y r e n d e r s v i s i b l e . in T h i s t u r n i n g t o w a r d the v o i c e of the l a w is a s i g n of a c e r t a i n the a c c o u n t o f subject f o r m a t i o n . I f there A l t h u s s e r takes u p g u i l t e x p l i c i t l y i n the n a r r a t i v e ." guilt a n d conscience operate i m p l i c i t l y in s i g n i f i c a n c e of t u r n i n g to face a v o i c e that calls f r o m b e h i n d ? relation to an ideological demand. w i t h i n the t e r m s o f the c o r d i n g to A l t h u s s e r . perversely. h o w e v e r is no subject e x c e p t as a c o n s e q u e n c e of this s u b j e c t i o n . ac- sionate p u r s u i t o f a r e c o g n i t i o n w h i c h . w h a t p r e c i p i t a t e s t h i s d e s i r e for the l a w . a visual rendering of an auditory scene—a m i r r o r t i a l l y f i g u r e d t h r o u g h the r e l i g i o u s e x a m p l e . his wife. a p a r a d o x w h i c h calls m e n t t o one's c o n t i n u i n g existence. I n 9 assure h i s / h e r existence i n t e r m s o f the l a w . T h e p r e s e n t c h a p t e r a t t e m p t s d e s i r e t o b e b e h e l d b y a n d p e r h a p s also t o b e h o l d the face o f t o r e r e a d that essay t o u n d e r s t a n d h o w i n t e r p e l l a t i o n i s essen- authority. existence as a subject. a false a n d p r o v i s i o n a l religious example. T h e y i e l d i n g t o the l a w m i g h t t h e n a p p a r e n t l y r i g o r o u s w a y i n w h i c h i t d e v e l o p s its a r g u m e n t s . t h i s l u r e A n o t h e r w a y o f p o s i n g t h i s q u e s t i o n w o u l d b e t o ask: H o w o f m i s r e c o g n i t i o n o f f e r e d i n the r e p r i m a n d that establishes i s A l t h u s s e r ' s text i m p l i c a t e d i n the " c o n s c i e n c e " that i t seeks s u b o r d i n a t i o n a s the p r i c e o f s u b j e c t i v a t i o n ? T h i s a c c o u n t a p - to e x p l a i n ? To w h a t extent is the p e r s i s t e n c e of the t h e o - p e a r s to i m p l y that s o c i a l existence.

I d o n o t m e a n t o t h o u g h t together. are set a p a r t f r o m the r i g o r o u s a r g u m e n t a t i o n of the text itself. T h e " d i v e r s e s k i l l s " o f l a b o r p o w e r m u s t b e r e p r o - F o r A l t h u s s e r . m o r e c a t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s . i s l i n k e d t o the a c q u i s i t i o n o f m a s t e r y . t h i s t u r n i n g b a c k u p o n oneself. " Neither Althusser nor Vincent considers for the subject t o f o r m . T h e c o n c e r n here has a m o r e s p e c i f i c t e x t u a l a i m . w h i c h m a y o c c a s i o n a s y m p t o m a t i c r e a d i n g that " w e a k e n s " r i g o r o u s i s s i m u l t a n e o u s w i t h a t u r n i n g t o w a r d the law. to show h o w figures—examples and analogies—in- w i t h the p r o b l e m of s p e a k i n g p r o p e r l y (bien parler)} f o r m a n d e x t e n d c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n s . C o n s c i e n c e i s f u n d a m e n t a l t o the p r o d u c t i o n a n d o f f e r e d i n p e d a g o g i c a l p a r a p h r a s i s . t h u s e x t e n d i n g t h r o u g h e x a m p l e the r e p r i m a n d . T h e first m e n t i o n of "conscience. w i t h o u t r e d u c i n g o n e t o the o t h e r ? suggest that the " t r u t h " o f A l t h u s s e r ' s text c a n b e d i s c o v e r e d B e f o r e the p o l i c e o r the c h u r c h a u t h o r i t i e s a r r i v e o n the i n h o w the f i g u r a i d i s r u p t s " r i g o r o u s " c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n . a p r o c e s s c e n t r a l t o the f o r m a t i o n o f e x p o s e o n l y b y r e e n a c t i n g that a u t h o r i t y . T o the extent that A l t h u s s e r ' s t u r n o f the subject. i m p l i c a t i n g the text i n a n i n g p r o p e r l y " a p p e a r s t o b e a n i n s t a n c e o f the i d e o l o g i c a l ideological sanctification of religious authority w h i c h it can w o r k o f a c q u i r i n g s k i l l s . It c o n s t i t u t e s the i n a u g u r a t i n g r e f l e x i v e p h o r a n d the r e a d i n g o f i d e o l o g y . T h e s k i l l s t o b e l e a r n e d are. t o l e a r n i n g h o w t o m a d e subject. a n a p p r o a c h r o m a n t i c i z e s the f i g u r a i a s e s s e n t i a l l y d i s r u p t i v e . S u c h A l t h u s s e r i a n scene. w h e r e the n o t i o n " c o n s c i e n c e " is the f i r m " a n d i n school. A l t h u s s e r l i n k s the e m e r g e n c e o f a c o n s c i o u s n e s s — t u a l c l a i m s . h o w e v e r : the p u t a t i v e force o f d i v i n e n a m i n g t o the s o c i a l a u t h o r i t i e s b y t u r n i n g b a c k i s a t u r n i n g t o w a r d . the efficacy o f i d e o l o g y consists i n p a r t i n d u c e d . I n s t e a d .s u b j e c t . the l a w . e n a c t e d i n a n t i c i p a t i o n o f the l a w a n d r e l i g i o u s a n a l o g i e s are u n d e r s t o o d a s m e r e l y i l l u s t r a t i v e . i s l i n k e d w i t h the v e r y p o s s i b i l i t y o f whereas figures m a y w e l l c o m p o u n d a n d intensify concep- s p e e c h . t h i s s e l f . a n d increasingly this r e p r o d u c t i o n happens "outside the f o r m a t i o n of conscience. h a v i n g p r e j u d i c a t i v e f o r e k n o w l e d g e of. a n d a c o n s c i e n c e ("la c o n s c i e n c e c i v i q u e et p r o f e s s i o n e l l e " ) — namely. w i t h i n recent l i t e r a r y n a l " h a v e a l r e a d y b e e n f o r m e d . i n a L a c a n i a n v e i n . a n u n n e c e s s a r y t e n s i o n b e t w e e n the r e a d i n g o f m e t a - p r i o r to the subject." w h i c h w i l l as a s e l f . for c o n s c i e n c e t u r n s the i n d i - o f the v o i c e o f r e l i g i o u s a u t h o r i t y b e c o m e s e x e m p l a r y f o r the v i d u a l a r o u n d . t h e y hence d e t e r m i n e d by. b e c a u s e o f a r e f l e x i v i t y — w h i c h c o n s t i t u t e s the c o n d i t i o n o f p o s s i b i l i t y a l l that w e a k e n s i t . R e f l e x i v i t y i s c o n s t i t u t e d t h r o u g h t h i s the p o s s i b i l i t y that the e x e m p l a r y status o f c e r t a i n m e t a p h o r s m o m e n t o f c o n s c i e n c e . T h i s self- a r g u m e n t . Yet i n A l t h u s s e r ' s o w n text. Yet the p e r f o r m a t i v e force r e g u l a t i o n o f the c i t i z e n . it d e s i g n a t e s a k i n d of t u r n i n g b a c k — "speak p r o p e r l y . the generally. m a k e s h i m / h e r a v a i l a b l e t o the s u b j e c t i v a t i n g t h e o r y o f i n t e r p e l l a t i o n . " T h e r e p r o d u c t i o n o f the subject takes p l a c e . a t u r n i n g b a c k u p o n itself p e r f o r m e d b y a r e a d y - t i o n .r e s t r i c t i o n i s s t u d i e s . o u t s i d e p r o d u c t i o n a n d i n e d u - u n d e r s t o o d t o p l a c e r e s t r i c t i o n s o n w h a t i s s p e a k a b l e or. Conscience cannot be conceptualized skills of speech.r e s t r i c t i o n . Instead. T h e l a w r e d o u b l e s that r e p r i m a n d . a b o v e a l l . if that r e l a t i o n is c o n s t r u e d as a p r e g i v e n t u r n o u t t o b e c e n t r a l t o the success o r efficacy o f i n t e r p e l l a - r e f l e x i v i t y . representable. r e c o n s i d e r i n g the c e n - r e s t r i c t i o n d o e s n o t i n t e r n a l i z e a n e x t e r n a l l a w : the m o d e l o f 1 0 t r a l r e l i g i o u s t r o p e s o f the v o i c e o f the l a w a n d c o n s c i e n c e e n - i n t e r n a l i z a t i o n takes for g r a n t e d that a n " i n t e r n a l " a n d "exter- ables o n e t o q u e s t i o n w h a t has b e c o m e . H o w are these t u r n s t o b e w h i c h the subject i s h a i l e d i n t o s o c i a l b e i n g .ii 4 "Conscience D o t h M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " T Althusser's Subjection "5 b u t a l s o b e c a u s e o f w h a t d i s o r g a n i z e s its o r d e r . there is a reference to p r o h i b i t i o n w h i c h . 1 "Speak- the subject. that is.

" " w e are submission. s t r i c t l y s p e a k i n g . the r e p r o d u c t i o n o f n a n t o r d e r a n d t o b e m a r k e d b y a loss o f c o n t r o l a n d m a s t e r y . " I n t h i s sense the r u l e s o f p r o p e r s p e e c h In t h i s v i e w . the m o r e f u l l y e d u c a t i o n . . teaches ' k n o w . a c c o u n t s f o r its f o r m a t i o n ? A l - or [ou] the m a s t e r y of its ' p r a c t i c e ' " (133/73).h o l d e r s a m e t i m e . s k i l l s . a n d W o r k e r s are t a u g h t t o speak p r o p e r l y a n d m a n a g e r s l e a r n t o m a s t e r y a s s u b m i s s i o n . . C o n s i d e r the t h u s s e r b e g i n s " I d e o l o g y a n d I d e o l o g i c a l State A p p a r a t u s e s " l o g i c a l effect o f the d i s j u n c t i v e " o r " i n the m i d d l e o f t h i s for- b y r e f e r r i n g t o the r e p r o d u c t i o n o f s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s . [l'assujetissement à l ' i d é o l o g i e d o m i n a n t e ] W h a t . In a subjection is achieved. the ruling ideology m i s s i o n to consist in y i e l d i n g to an externally i m p o s e d d o m i - T h e r e p r o d u c t i o n o f s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s . T h e subject is f o r m e d w i t h respect to the latter. T h e b i n a r y f r a m e o f l a b o r i s not c e n t r a l h e r e — t h e c e n t r a l r e p r o d u c t i o n i s o n e .. . d i v i s i o n o f l a b o u r . p r i o r t o the subject. the a m b i v a l e n c e o f s u b j e c t i o n . B u t the r e p r o d u c t i o n p a r a d o x i c a l l y . c o n s t i t u t i n g .n6 Althusser's Subjection "Conscience D o t h M a k e Subjects o f U s A l l " t h r o u g h the r e p r o d u c t i o n o f l i n g u i s t i c s k i l l s . the r u l e s a n d a t t i t u d e s o b s e r v e d " b y e v e r y agent i n the submission precisely a n d p a r a d o x i c a l l y as a k i n d of mastery. subject. i t i s itself m a r k e d b y m a s t e r y . Yet the t w o c a n n o t . H e t h e n d i s t i n g u i s h e s b e - ent.g. in f o r m s w h i c h e n s u r e subjection to o f its c o n s t r u c t i o n w i t h o u t p r e s u p p o s i n g that c o n s t r u c t i o n i n a s k i n g the q u e s t i o n . S u b m i s s i o n a n d mastery take place sense. n e i t h e r s u b m i s s i o n n o r m a s t e r y is performed by a are also the r u l e s b y w h i c h respect i s p r o f e r r e d o r w i t h h e l d . i s the c o n d i t i o n o f p o s s i b i l i t y for the s p e a k to w o r k e r s " i n the r i g h t w a y [bien commander]" (131- e m e r g e n c e of the subject. t h i s r e p r o d u c t i o n o f r e l a t i o n s i s p r i o r t o the subject w h o simultaneously.h o w ' [ s k i l l s . . " w e are t r y i n g t o d e s c r i b e . The conceptual p r o b l e m here is u n d e r s c o r e d by a g r a m - 32/72). T h e g r a m m a r o f the subject e m e r g e s o n l y i n the n e x t p a r a g r a p h t o the p r o b l e m a t i c o f subjection. T h o u g h o n e m i g h t e x p e c t s u b - b e t h o u g h t w i t h o u t e a c h other. a n d yet there i s a g r a m m a t i c a l l y i n d u c e d " n e e d t o k n o w " o f s u b m i s s i o n : "the r e p r o d u c t i o n o f l a b o r p o w e r r e q u i r e s n o t who u n d e r g o e s t h i s s u b m i s s i o n in o r d e r to b e c o m e a subject. at the A l t h u s s e r i n t r o d u c e s the t e r m " i n d i v i d u a l " a s a p l a c e . c a r r i e s the d o u b l e m e a n i n g o f h a v i n g s u b m i t t e d t o these r u l e s B e c a u s e w e are. u l t i m a t e l y fit the g r a m m a t i c a l r e q u i r e m e n t w i l l n o t b e a static T h i s s u b m i s s i o n t o the r u l e s o f the d o m i n a n t i d e o l o g y l e a d s g r a m m a t i c a l subject. T h e m o r e a p r a c t i c e i s m a s t e r e d . b u t also. o n l y a r e p r o d u c t i o n of (the l a b o r e r ' s ) s k i l l s . a r e p r o d u c t i o n of its s u b m i s s i o n to the r u l e s of the t o satisfy p r o v i s i o n a l l y t h i s g r a m m a t i c a l n e e d . t r a p p e d w i t h i n the g r a m m a t i c a l a n d b e c o m i n g constituted w i t h i n sociality b y v i r t u e o f this t i m e o f the subject (e. i s the r e p r o d u c t i o n o f s u b j e c t i o n . yet m a t i c a l o n e i n w h i c h there c a n b e n o subject p r i o r t o a s u b m i s - this mastery is figured by Althusser quite clearly as a k i n d s i o n . b u t w h a t m i g h t established order (132/72). the l i v e d s i m u l t a n e i t y of s u b m i s s i o n as m a s t e r y . a s i t w e r e . w h i c h as a c o n s e q u e n c e of the p r o c e s s we are t r y i n g to d e s c r i b e . L a n g u a g e s k i l l s are s a i d t o b e m a s t e r e d a n d m a s t e r a b l e . t r a p p e d " ) . a s i t 117 o f m a s t e r y / s u b m i s s i o n i s f o r f e i t e d b y A l t h u s s e r a s h e recasts w e r e . yet e q u i v a l e n t t e r m s — " t h e m a s t e r y o f its ' p r a c t i c e ' " ( m y t w e e n s k i l l s r e p r o d u c e d i n the f i r m a n d those r e p r o d u c e d i n e m p h a s i s ) . s p e c i f i e d m u l a t i o n : " s u b j e c t i o n t o the r u l i n g i d e o l o g y o r " — p u t i n differ- a s the r e p r o d u c t i o n o f s o c i a l s k i l l s . des 'savoir-faire'] . it is a l m o s t i m p o s s i b l e to ask after the g e n e a l o g y [soumission à l'idéologie dominante]" A l t h u s s e r w r i t e s that "the s c h o o l . a n d this p a r a d o x i c a l s i m u l t a n e i t y constitutes i s f o r m e d i n its c o u r s e .

T o tasks " c o n s c i e n t i o u s l y " i s t o p e r f o r m t h e m . To b e c o m e a "subject" is t h u s a m e c h a n i s t i c a p p r o p r i a t i o n of n o r m s . 13 the status o f the subject i n a n d t h r o u g h c o m p l i a n c e w i t h the W h a t leads t o t h i s r e p r o d u c t i o n ? C l e a r l y . then tried a n d declared i n n o - a p p r o p r i a t i o n . To the extent that it p r e c e d e s the f o r m a t i o n of i n c e s s a n t l y reproduced.ii8 "Conscience Doth M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " p r o p e r t o the subject a n d takes p l a c e i n r e l a t i o n t o l a n g u a g e Althusser s Subjection 119 that the r e a s o n there are so f e w references to " b a d subjects" a n d t o the f o r m a t i o n o f c o n s c i e n c e ." 73). a n e x e c u t i o n o f that p r o o f . b u t to e m b o d y r u l e s in the c o u r s e of a c t i o n m a n d f o r p r o o f . a n d o u s l y i n the p r o c e s s o f a c q u i t t i n g oneself o f the a c c u s a t i o n o f yet t h i s i n v o l u n t a r y c o m p u l s i o n i s n o t a m e c h a n i s t i c a l l y i n - g u i l t . There is guilt. a s i t w e r e . tation m a r k s ("pour s'acquitter 'consciencieusement' de leur for there i s n o subject p r i o r t o t h e i r p e r f o r m i n g . H e r e o n e m i g h t u s e f u l l y conjecture a n i m a t i n g o n l y o n the o c c a s i o n o f the r e p r i m a n d . t o p e r f o r m i n A l t h u s s e r i s that the t e r m t e n d s t o w a r d the o x y m o r o n i c . n o r is it a v o l u n t a r i s t i c to have been p r e s u m e d guilty. a g a i n be " b a d " is not yet to be a subject. t h e n t h i s m a s t e r y of the g r a m m a t i c a l p l a c e w i t h i n the s o c i a l as a subject. a n d t h e n a n d o n l y t h e n a n a s s u m p t i o n o f be c o n s t r u e d as an acquitting of oneself. i t c o n - p u l s i o n t o " a c q u i t oneself. A l t h u s s e r places "conscientiously" in q u o - T h i s p e r f o r m a n c e i s n o t s i m p l y i n accord w i t h these s k i l l s . To say that the subject p e r f o r m s a c c o r d i n g to a set of s k i l l s it is the a c c u s e d ' s d e c l a r a t i o n of i n n o c e n c e . a d i s p l a y o r p r o o f o f g u i l t l e s s n e s s i n the face o f the fails t o l e a r n t h e m . q u i t e l i t e r a l l y . to c o n s t r u e l a b o r as a c o n f e s s i o n of w h o e n c o u n t e r s a set o f s k i l l s t o b e l e a r n e d . s o m e w h e r e — w h a t i t w h i c h i s t h e n i n c o r p o r a t e d i n t o the p e r f o r m a n c e i n its subse- is not to h a v e that s t a n d i n g a n d h e n c e to h a v e b e e n cast o u t quent operations. b u t o n e for w h o m that status i s t e n u o u s . a s u b m i s s i o n t o the d e - to a set of r u l e s . a n d a c q u i s i t i o n o f a n d to r e p r o d u c e those rules in e m b o d i e d rituals of a c t i o n . to h a v e m a s t e r e d those s k i l l s or n o t . t h u s b r i n g i n g i n t o r e l i e f the w a y i n w h i c h l a b o r s k i l l s l a b o r i o u s l y w o r k s the subject i n t o its status as a s o c i a l i s m o r a l i z e d . T h e m o r a l sense o f s'acquitter i s lost i n its t r a n s - being. T h i s i s not s i m p l y t o act a c c o r d i n g i n n o c e n c e i n the face o f a c c u s a t i o n . n o t yet to h a v e a c q u i t t e d a n d a g a i n . i n r e p r o d u c i n g t h e m . a n d then a repetitive practice by w h i c h l a t i o n as "to p e r f o r m " : if the m a s t e r y of a set of s k i l l s is to s k i l l s are a c q u i r e d . But inherent to any performance is a c o m - a s g u i l t y Yet b e c a u s e t h i s g u i l t c o n d i t i o n s the subject. T h e n o t i o n o f r i t u a l suggests that i t i s p e r f o r m e d . i n d e e d . t o r e p r o d u c e those s k i l l s a n d . t h e n . a n d t h e n a n d o n l y t h e n c a n i t b e s a i d e i t h e r d e m a n d for confession i m p l i e d by an insistent accusation. It is neither s i m p l e b e h a v i o r i s m n o r a delib- cent. to b e c o m e a "subject" is to be c o n t i n u - the subject. savoir-faire d e f e n d s o n e a g a i n s t a n a c c u s a t i o n . it is n o t yet of the o r d e r of c o n s c i o u s n e s s . to t a k e g r a m m a r at its w o r d : there is a subject " c o n s c i e n t i o u s l y " is. a n d that i n the r e p e t i t i o n o f p e r f o r m a n c e a b e l i e f i s s p a w n e d . p e r f o r m i n g tâche. i n g o o d s t a n d i n g . To a c q u i t oneself is. as it w e r e . It is to h a v e b e c o m e an e m b l e m of l a w f u l n e s s . F o r A l t h u s s e r ." a n d s o p r i o r t o a n y p e r f o r m a n c e i s stitutes the p r e h i s t o r y o f the s u b j e c t i o n t o the l a w b y w h i c h an anxiety a n d a knowingness w h i c h becomes articulate a n d the subject i s p r o d u c e d . a c i t i z e n d u c e d effect. 12 to acquire mastery. one w h o has k n o w n — s o m e h o w . b u t t o r e p r o d u c e t h e m i n t h e n be u n d e r s t o o d as a s u b m i s s i o n to the n e c e s s i t y to p r o v e a n d a s one's o w n a c t i v i t y . B e c a u s e t h i s d e c l a r a t i o n is n o t a s i n g l e act b u t a status erate project. . l e a r n s t h e m o r i n n o c e n c e . To m a s t e r a set of s k i l l s is " S u b m i s s i o n " t o the r u l e s o f the d o m i n a n t i d e o l o g y m i g h t n o t s i m p l y t o accept a set o f s k i l l s . i t i s n o t m e r e l y t e r m s of the i n t e r r o g a t i v e law. oneself o f the a l l e g a t i o n o f g u i l t .

t o f i g u r e the a n d s o c i a l b o n d s . a n d that o f the p s y c h i c . w h i c h i s o n t o l o g i - p s y c h e as p u r e i d e a l i t y .i d e o l o g i c a l ' a n d ' p r e s u b j e c t i v e ' materia prima This manner of distinguishing interior from exterior m a y that c o m e s t o h a u n t s u b j e c t i v i t y o n c e i t i s c o n s t i t u t e d a s s u c h " w e l l s e e m strange as a c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n of or e x t r a p o l a t i o n (75). In a f o r m u l a t i o n w i t h strong that A l t h u s s e r . Althusser's distinctive contribution t h i s p h r a s e D o l a r e x p l i c i t l y contests the s o c i a l a c c o u n t o f m a - is. a r i t u a l . a n d its p r a c t i c e . " i s a w a y o f a v o i d i n g [that r e m a i n d e r ] " (76). T o insist o n the for D o l a r i s the n e e d t o s t r e n g t h e n the d i s t i n c t i o n b e t w e e n the s e p a r a b i l i t y o f the p s y c h e f r o m s o c i a l p r a c t i c e i s t o i n t e n s i f y d o m a i n o f the s y m b o l i c . the c o u n t e r v a i l i n g e x t e r i o r i n d i v i d u a l that c a n n o t s u c c e s s f u l l y pass i n t o the subject. f r o m the p o i n t of v i e w b y a s s e r t i n g the m a t e r i a l i t y o f the i d e o l o g i c a l : " a n i d e o l o g y o f the s o c i a l . i n p a r t i c u l a r . t h u s c r i t i c i z e s A l t h u s s e r for e l i d i n g the d i m e n s i o n o f subjec- T h i s existence i s m a t e r i a l . fails t o a p p r e c i a t e the d i s r u p t i v e p o t e n t i a l o f n o t i o n o f i n f e r i o r i t y a n d i d e n t i f i e s a s m a t e r i a l the d o m a i n o f p s y c h o a n a l y s i s . the n o t i o n o f the R e a l a s d e s i g - e x t e r i o r i t y (i. or a s o c i a l r e l a t i o n . o r p r a c t i c e s . I c a l l y d i s t i n c t f r o m the s o c i a l a n d i s d e n n e d a s the r e m a i n d e r turn. " t i v i t y that r e m a i n s r a d i c a l l y i m m a t e r i a l . Yet the S l o v e n i a n c r i t i c M l a d e n p s y c h o a n a l y s i s . D o l a r a r g u e s that A l t h u s s e r fails t o a c c o u n t for the p s y c h e a s The r e m a i n d e r p r o d u c e d by subjectivation is also invisible a separate d i m e n s i o n . " " I n t e r p e l l a t i o n " h e i n the s a m e w a y that S l a v o j Z i z e k suggests a n e c e s s a r y c o m - w r i t e s . i s p a r t o f the t h e n l o o s e l y a l i g n s that d i s t i n c t i o n w i t h the A l t h u s s e r i a n d i v i - e x p a n d e d d o m a i n o f m a t e r i a l i t y i n the A l t h u s s e r i a n sense. the subject i s w h a t m a k e s i d e o l o g y w o r k . . 1 4 the t e n s i o n b e t w e e n the p u t a t i v e i d e a l i t y o f s u b j e c t i v i t y a n d Dolar distinguishes between materiality and inferiority. " T o p u t it the s i m p l e s t w a y . the subject e m e r g e s w h e r e i d e o l o g y fails. not u n l i k e the i d e a l i t y of the s o u l . . T h e u s e of "materia prima" h e r e is s i g n i f i c a n t . there is a p a r t of the m a t e r i a l i t y b e l o n g s t o its o p p o s i t e . m u c h f r o m the p o i n t o f v i e w o f i n t e r p e l l a t i o n . In fact. the " m a t e r i a p r i m a " i s r a d i c a l l y immaterial.120 "Conscience D o t h M a k e Subjects of Us A H " Althusser's Subjection 121 I s i t p o s s i b l e t o separate the p s y c h i c d i m e n s i o n o f t h i s r i t u - ance w i t h i n m a t e r i a l i t y . A t stake plementarity between Althusser and Lacan. s i o n b e t w e e n the m a t e r i a l i t y o f the state a p p a r a t u s a n d the M l a d e n D o l a r ' s essay " B e y o n d I n t e r p e l l a t i o n " suggests putative ideality of subjectivity. a n world. H e p r e s u p p o s e s that 1 5 n a t i n g that w h i c h n e v e r b e c o m e s a v a i l a b l e t o s u b j e c t i v a t i o n .. e l e m e n t of ' p r e . b a r r e d f r o m a p p e a r - 1 6 T h e c o n s t i t u t i o n of the subject is material to the extent that . e x t e r i o r t o the subject). w h e r e a s D o l a r w r i t e s . i n t e r p e l l a t i o n c a n a l i s t i c r e p e t i t i o n f r o m the "acts" b y w h i c h i t i s a n i m a t e d a n d o n l y e x p l a i n the f o r m a t i o n o f the subject i n a p a r t i a l w a y : reanimated? The v e r y n o t i o n of r i t u a l is meant to render be- "for A l t h u s s e r . then. t o u n d e r m i n e the o n t o l o g i c a l d u a l i s m p r e s u p p o s e d t e r i a l i t y that A l t h u s s e r p r o v i d e s . for lief a n d p r a c t i c e i n s e p a r a b l e . u n d e r s t o o d a s c o m m u n i c a b l e s p e e c h the r e l i g i o u s m e t a p h o r i c s i n A l t h u s s e r . the c l a i m that i d e o l o g y . after a l l . D o l a r defines s u b j e c t i v i t y t h r o u g h the the i m a g i n a r y . A c c o r d i n g t o D o l a r . for w i t h from Althusser's position. . H e d o e s s o a p r a c t i c e . D o l a r c o u n s e l s a r e t u r n t o L a c a n . t h i s "materia prima" b y the c o n v e n t i o n a l M a r x i s t d i s t i n c t i o n b e t w e e n a m a t e r i a l n e v e r materializes in the A l t h u s s e r i a n sense. n e v e r e m e r g e s as base a n d a n i d e a l o r i d e o l o g i c a l s u p e r s t r u c t u r e . to D o l a r ' s reading of Althusser in order to consider that the n o t i o n o f the s o c i a l c a n n o t t a k e i n t o a c c o u n t . that is. D o l a r a l w a y s exists i n a n a p p a r a t u s .e. i n c l u d i n g p s y c h i c r e a l i t y . s u b j e c t i v i t y consists i n b o t h i n f e r i o r i t y a n d i d e a l i t y . d e s p i t e h i s o c c a s i o n a l u s e o f L a c a n ' s t h e o r y o f C a r t e s i a n r e s o n a n c e .

" a n d t h e n reverses the t e r m s h e uses. b u t the v e r y p r e s u p p o s i t i o n s o f D o l a r ' s q u e s t i o n s c a n subject. i f that p o s t u r e c o n d i t i o n s a n d reiterates belief. But h o w I n D o l a r . T h e L a c a n i a n n o t i o n of the R e a l is cast as the a r i t u a l suggests that he p r e s u m e s a v o l i t i o n a l subject m u s t first act of i n t r o j e c t i o n as w e l l as the subject's r a d i c a l l i m i t . a n d D o l a r ' s q u e s t i o n s are i m p o s s i b l e t o satisfy i n A l t h u s s e r ' s that i n t r o j e c t i o n b e c o m e s the c o n d i t i o n o f p o s s i b i l i t y for the t e r m s . T h i s m a y b e D o l a r ' s c r i t i c a l p o i n t . P a s c a l ' s b e l i e v e r k n e e l s m o r e t h a n c o n s t i t u t e s the f o u n d i n g i d e a l i t y o f s u b j e c t i v i t y . H e n c e . thus. (88) a n d i t i s u n c l e a r h o w that t e r m m i g h t b e t r a n s p o s e d o n t o D o l a r refers to t h i s as a "senseless r i t u a l . T h i s i n s i g h t once.p h e n o m e n a l " k e r n e l o f i n f e r i o r i t y . n o t o n l y the be countered w i t h an Althusserian explanation. That Dolar s u p p o r t i n g c o n d i t i o n o f the subject b u t the p e r s i s t e n t threat p r e s u m e s a c o n s e n t i n g subject p r i o r to the p e r f o r m a n c e of to its coherence. a n d yet D o l a r a p - j u r e d . B u t i f b e l i e f f o l l o w s f r o m theory: the p o s t u r e o f p r a y e r . T o u n d e r s t a n d . a n d these r i t u a l s l i m i t to b o t h materialization a n d subjectivation. A s fore- j e c t i v i t y . the p r i m a r y object i s lost a n d i d e a l i z e d a t the subject. " that r i t u a l ser's text. " u n d e r s t o o d a s the l i v e d a n d i m a g i n a r y e x p e r i e n c e o f c l o s e d o r i n t r o j e c t e d . To elucidate the transition between the external materiality of state apparatuses (institutions. the i d e a l i t y a c q u i r e d b y t h i s object t h r o u g h i n t r o j e c t i o n subjects are c o n s t i t u t e d . "the r i t u a l s o f i d e o l o g i c a l p e a r s t o a t t r i b u t e t o h i m the v e r y d i s t i n c t i o n b e t w e e n m a t e r i - r e c o g n i t i o n " ' (173) b y w h i c h the subject i s c o n s t i t u t e d i s c e n - a l i t y a n d i d e a l i t y that i s i n s u f f i c i e n t l y r e a l i z e d i n A l t h u s s e r ' s t r a l t o the v e r y n o t i o n o f i d e o l o g y . Althusser borrows a famous suggestion from Pascal. D o l a r w i l l a r g u e that the d i s t i n c t i o n b e t w e e n the i n - f o l l o w the r i t u a l ? W h y d i d he/she c o n s e n t t o repeat a series o f t e r i o r a n d the e x t e r i o r i s p r o d u c e d t h r o u g h "the i n t r o j e c t i o n senseless g e s t u r e s ? " (89). T h e i r r e c o v e r a b i l i t y o f that object is. t h e n h o w are w e t o separate the i d e a t i o n a l s p h e r e f r o m the r i t u a l p r a c t i c e s b y w h i c h i t i s i n c e s s a n t l y r e i n s t i t u t e d ? A l t h o u g h the q u e s t i o n of the subject is n o t the s a m e as the q u e s t i o n o f s u b j e c t i v i t y . namely his scandalous piece of advice that the best way to become a believer is to follow the religious rituals. " tice t o a c c o u n t for the m o t i v a t i o n t o p r a y : " W h a t m a d e h i m 1 7 I n fact. n e c e s s a r i l y r e p e a t i n g the g e s t u r e b y w h i c h b e l i e f i s c o n - i s the o n e that A l t h u s s e r a p p e a r s t o m i s s . n a m e l y . practices.s y m b o l i z a b l e R e a l .122 "Conscience D o t h M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " Althusser's Subjection 123 t h i s c o n s t i t u t i o n takes p l a c e t h r o u g h rituals. a p r i m a r y object is i n t r o j e c t e d . the A l t h u s s e r i a n a c c o u n t i n o r d e r t o e s t a b l i s h that the c r e e d that there i s n o t e n o u g h o f a p l a c e f o r s u b j e c t i v i t y i n A l t h u s - a n d the r i t u a l are the effects o f " a s u p p o s i t i o n . etc. D o l a r c a n n o t f u l l y t a k e i n t o a c c o u n t the " r e m a i n d e r " p r o d u c e d b y u n d e r s c o r e s the i n a b i l i t y o f A l t h u s s e r ' s t h e o r y o f r i t u a l p r a c - s u b j e c t i v a t i o n . b u t i s n o t its c o n d i t i o n o f p r o d u c t i o n . of the object" (79). W h a t i s c a l l e d "sub- the c o n s t i t u t i v e l a c k o r the n o n . i n D o l a r ' s essay i t n e v e r t h e l e s s r e m a i n s u n c l e a r h o w t h o s e t w o n o t i o n s are t o b e t h o u g h t together. rituals. there is a step in the emergence of both the subject and the Other that Althusser leaves out and that can perhaps be best illustrated by Althusser's o w n example. D o l a r ' s p r i m a r y c r i t i c a l c o n c e r n i s that A l t h u s s e r f o l l o w s belief. i s itself d e r i v e d f r o m the m a t e r i a l r i t u a l s b y w h i c h once. e x c e p t p e r h a p s i n the c r i t i q u e o f s u b j e c t i v i s m . the i d e a l i t y o f t h i s k e r n e l o f i n f e r i o r i t y sets the d o e s this c o n s e n t i n g subject c o m e t o be? T h i s s u p p o s i n g a n d . T h e n o t i o n o f " s u b j e c t i v i t y " d o e s n o t h a v e m u c h p l a y i n A l t h u s s e r . it constitutes m a t e r i a l i z e "the i d e a s o f the subject" (169). already be in place to give an account of motivation. the n o n .) and the inferiority of ideological subjectivity. m o r e b r o a d l y .

a n d e n s u r e s its i t e r - A l t h u s s e r ' s o w n a r g u m e n t a t i o n . g u a g e o f s u p p o s i n g a n d c o n s e n t i n g . " A n t i c i p a t i o n of s u c h sense g o v - a l i t y a n d r e p e t i t i o n that a p p e a r s t o b e i n d i r e c t t e n s i o n w i t h erns the " e m p t y " r i t u a l that i s s p e e c h . I n a n i m p o r t a n t sense. If subjectivity can spring up from materially following certain rituals.m a t e r i a l i z a b l e i d e a l i t y . T h e a c c o u n t of subject f o r m a t i o n is t h u s a d o u b l e fict i o n a t c r o s s . O n the governed by rituals. I n t h i s sense. w e m u s t n e i t h e r first b e l i e v e b e f o r e extent that it consists in a set of p r a c t i c e s . i m m a t e r i a l . t h e n . it is only insofar as those rituals function as a symbolic automatism. r e p e a t e d l y s y m p t o m a t i z i n g This is also w h y Althusser's ardent insistence on materiality is i n sufficient: the Other that emerges here. and Althusser covers up this non-materiality by talking about the materiality of institutions and practices. I f i d e o l o g y i s m a t e r i a l t o the a b i l i t y . If extent that t h e y a c q u i r e a productive c a p a c i t y a n d . a n d p r a c t i c e s are w e k n e e l n o r k n o w the sense o f w o r d s b e f o r e w e speak. It the g r a m m a t i c a l r e q u i r e m e n t s o f the n a r r a t i v e w o r k a g a i n s t remains unclear. a n d o n l y T h i s last r e m a r k f o r m u l a t e s a n o p p o s i t i o n b e t w e e n m a t e r i - later get a sense of t h e i r l i f e . that the a n t i c i p a t i o n s o f g r a m m a r are a l w a y s a n d o n l y r e t r o a c t i v e l y i n s t a l l e d . a n d c a n d o s o o n l y t o the extent that t h e y are t h e m s e l v e s t h e n the act b y w h i c h w e m i g h t " c o n s e n t " t o k n e e l i s n o m o r e governed by a s y m b o l i c or reiterative logic. t h e n . (89) w h a t resists n a r r a t i o n . the lost a n d i n t r o - f o r m a t i o n o f the subject. precisely h o w D o l a r reads "materi- the a c c o u n t of subject f o r m a t i o n that the n a r r a t i v e a t t e m p t s to a l i t y " i n A l t h u s s e r . o r d o e s h i s " f a i l u r e " i n d i c a t e o n l y that jected object that i n a u g u r a t e s the f o r m a t i o n of the subject. the Other of the symbolic order. W i t t g e n s t e i n r e m a r k s . w e utter w o r d s . what counts is ultimately not that they are material. the g r a m m a r that the n a r r a t i v e r e q u i r e s r e s u l t s f r o m the n a r r a t i v e itself. T h e c i r c u l a r i t y i s clear. is not material. b o t h are p e r f o r m e d " o n f a i t h " that sense w i l l a r r i v e ritual and repetition as it is by more narrowly empiricist con- i n a n d t h r o u g h a r t i c u l a t i o n i t s e l f — a n a n t i c i p a t i o n that i s n o t c e p t i o n s . T h e g r a m m a r that g o v e r n s the n a r r a t i o n o f subject f o r m a t i o n p r e s u m e s that the g r a m m a t i c a l p l a c e f o r the subject has a l r e a d y b e e n e s t a b l i s h e d . That Other cannot be discovered by scrutinizing materiality . b o t h A l t h u s s e r i a n a n d L a c a n i a n . S u b j e c t i v i t y for D o l a r i s s a i d t o " s p r i n g u p f r o m . in A l t h u s - s u p p o s i n g a n d c o n s e n t i n g are u n t h i n k a b l e o u t s i d e o f the l a n - ser's text. the r i t u a l s o f i d e o l o g y are m a t e r i a l t o the t h e r e b y g o v e r n e d by a g u a r a n t e e of n o e m a t i c s a t i s f a c t i o n .p u r p o s e s w i t h itself. w h a t r i t u a l s p r o d u c e are subjects. b u t subjec- a sedimentation of ritual forms —the rituals of C a r t e s i a n i s m — t i v i t y . that is. but that they are ruled by a code and by a repetition. b u t h o w i s i t t o b e u n d e r s t o o d ? I s t o i n c l u d e the d o m a i n o f i d e o l o g y i s t o o i n c l u s i v e . then materiality is defined as m u c h by c o n t r a r y . M o r e o v e r . insofar as they are governed by an "immaterial" logic supported by the Other. hence. " W e s p e a k .124 "Conscience D o t h M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " Althusser's Subjection 125 c o n s e n t i n g subject a p p e a r s t o p r e c e d e a n d c o n d i t i o n the "en- D o l a r m a k e s h i s o b j e c t i o n e x p l i c i t l y t h e o l o g i c a l b y suggest- t r a n c e " i n t o the s y m b o l i c a n d . . a n d t h i s l a n g u a g e i s itself D o l a r e x p l a i n s that r i t u a l s p r o d u c e n o t subjects. however. a n d w h e t h e r the r i t u a l a n d h e n c e temporal p r o v i d e ? T o l i t e r a l i z e o r t o a s c r i b e a n o n t o l o g i c a l status t o the d i m e n s i o n o f m a t e r i a l i t y i n A l t h u s s e r i s effaced i n f a v o r o f a g r a m m a t i c a l r e q u i r e m e n t o f "the subject" i s t o p r e s u m e a m i - r e d u c t i o n o f m a t e r i a l i t y t o the e m p i r i c a l l y o r s o c i a l l y g i v e n : metic relation between g r a m m a r a n d ontology w h i c h misses the p o i n t . that i t leaves it a f a i l i n g of A l t h u s s e r n o t to p r o v i d e the subject p r i o r to the n o r o o m for a n o n . . the b e c o m i n g o f a s u b - i n g that A l t h u s s e r ' s r e f o r m u l a t i o n o f the n o t i o n o f m a t e r i a l i t y ject. a logic w h i c h is a n d n o less r i t u a l i s t i c t h a n the k n e e l i n g itself.

t h i s r e - Ideas exist " i n s c r i b e d " i n acts that are p r a c t i c e s r e g u l a t e d m a i n d e r c a n b e p i n p o i n t e d i n the e x p e r i e n c e o f l o v e " (85). " is understood to be compelled by an immaterial law —the sym- D o l a r a r g u e s that A l t h u s s e r fails t o t a k e i n t o a c c o u n t the b o l i c — o v e r a n d a b o v e the r i t u a l i s t i c l a w s that g o v e r n the v a r i - d i s t i n c t i o n b e t w e e n m a t e r i a l i t y a n d the s y m b o l i c . t h e n h a p p e n o n l y o n the c o n d i t i o n that a l o g i c p r e c e d e s a n d s u p - w h a t establishes the i d e a l i t y o f that s y m b o l i c d o m a i n a p a r t ports this r i t u a l performance. b u t w h e r e the n o t i o n o f " f o l l o w i n g " a Is it the v o i c e of the s y m b o l i c . B u t t h i s in ideology: n o n . a " f o r c e d c h o i c e . it c a n n o t t o u c h a c e r t a i n i n t e r i o r r e g i s ter o f l o v e : "there i s a r e m a i n d e r i n v o l v e d i n the m e c h a n i s m of i n t e r p e l l a t i o n . a n i m m a t e r i a l logic.126 "Conscience D o t h M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " Althusser's Subjection 127 m a t e r i a l l y f o l l o w i n g c e r t a i n r i t u a l s . b u t w h e r e o u s p r a c t i c e s o f l o v e : " T h e O t h e r that e m e r g e s here. o r h a v e the t w o b e c o m e i n d i s s o l u b l e ? If. " w h e r e the " s p r i n g i n g u p " w o u l d w e p l a c e " i n t e r p e l l a t i o n " o n t h i s m a p p i n g o f the d i v i d e ? i s n o t itself m a t e r i a l . " C o u l d o n e say that l o v e i s w h a t w e an "existence" outside of ritual? W h a t m i g h t it m e a n to re- find beyond interpellation?" t h i n k the m a t e r i a l n o t o n l y as r e g u l a t e d r e p e t i t i o n . i n D o l a r ' s w o r d s . the O t h e r . as it w e r e . " Ideas have disappeared as such (insofar as they are endowed w i t h an ideal or spiritual existence). h e asks. T h e o l o g i c a l resistance to m a t e r i a l i s m is exemplified in D o l a r ' s e x p l i c i t defense o f L a c a n ' s C a r t e s i a n i n h e r i t a n c e . " s u g g e s t i n g r e p e t i t i o n that p r o d u c e s a subject a c t i n g i n f u l l c o n s c i o u s n e s s that w h a t h e e x p e c t e d f r o m the n o t i o n o f a subject w h o " c o n - a c c o r d i n g t o h i s b e l i e f ? T h e subject's b e l i e f i s n o different f r o m sents" t o k n e e l a n d p r a y i s a n a c c o u n t o f a " f o r c e d c o n s e n t " o f P a s c a l ' s . the left-over of the c l e a n c u t . yet the t h e o l o g i c a l i m p u l s e a l s o s t r u c t u r e s A l t h u s s e r ' s w o r k i n the f i g u r e o f the p u n i t i v e law. C a n they appear any other way. a n d can they have b i t f u r t h e r o n . . appear. the i r r e d u c i b i l i t y o r m a t e r i - the r e p e t i t i o n p r o p e r t o the " s y m b o l i c a u t o m a t i s m " ? ality to phenomenality. t h u s s e r ' s d e s c r i p t i o n o f the m a t e r i a l i t y o f i d e a s a n d the i d e a l the absence b y w h i c h the p h e n o m e n a l i s a r t i c u l a t e d . prescribing material practices governed by a material ritual. the s y m b o l i c a c q u i r e s its "existence" o n l y i n r i t u a l . A by rituals. The interval by w h i c h any repetition C o n s i d e r the i n s e p a r a b i l i t y o f t h o s e t w o r e p e t i t i o n s i n A l - takes p l a c e d o e s not. one w h i c h f r o m the v a r i o u s m o d e s o f its a p p e a r a n c e a n d i t e r a b i l i t y ? e n c o d e s a n d reenacts the i d e a l i z i n g effects o f i n t r o j e c t i o n . D o l a r suggests that. b u t as a H e r e l o v e is. . a n d . 19 his i n - sistance u p o n the p u r e i d e a l i t y o f the s o u l . t h e y are b o t h the r e s u l t o f the r e p e t i t i o u s c o n j u r i n g some k i n d . is it the r i t u a l i z e d v o i c e of the r i t u a l does h a v e a m a t e r i a l d i m e n s i o n . w h i c h practices exist in the material actions of a subject acting in all consciousness according to his belief. t o u s e D o l a r ' s m a t e r i a l l y f r o m a material r i t u a l performance. L o v e is b e y o n d interpellation precisely because it that A l t h u s s e r calls " m a t e r i a l i t y . to the precise extent that it has emerged that their existence is inscribed in the actions of practices governed by rituals defined in the last instance by an ideological apparatus. s t r i c t l y s p e a k i n g . a n d r e p e t i t i o n i m p l i e s h o w are w e t o d i s t i n g u i s h the r e p e t i t i o n p r o p e r t o r i t u a l a n d the d i s c o n t i n u i t y o f the m a t e r i a l .a p p e a r a n c e o r absence i s n o t f o r that r e a s o n a n " i d e a l i t y . S u b j e c t i v i t y arises i m - state. it is. B u t R i t u a l takes p l a c e t h r o u g h r e p e t i t i o n . t h o u g h the l a w s u c c e s s f u l l y regulates its subjects. 18 for it is b o u n d to the a r t i c u l a t i o n as its c o n s t i t u t i v e a n d absent necessity. It therefore appears that the subject acts insofar as he is acted by the following system (set out in the order of its real determination): ideology existing in a material ideological apparatus. but this can t e r m .

sure). s p l i t t i n g the subject at its i n c e p t i o n . w o u l d that n o t l e s s e n the n e e d a r o u n d u p o n h e a r i n g the p o l i c e m a n ' s a d d r e s s o r u r g e s the t o c o n f i r m one's g u i l t a n d e m b a r k o n a p a t h o f c o n s c i e n t i o u s - m u r d e r e r i n t o the streets i n s e a r c h o f the p o l i c e a p p e a r s t o b e ness as a w a y to g a i n a p u r c h a s e on i d e n t i t y ? W h a t are the . S u c h l o v e i s n o t b e y o n d i n t e r p e l l a t i o n . o r that w e m a y w e l l b e d o i n g o n e w h e n w e f u l l y c o n s t r a i n s A l t h u s s e r .128 Althusser's Subjection "Conscience Doth M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " 129 o f the s y m b o l i c o r d e r . to s u c h a degree that no m e t a . rather. If c o n s c i e n c e is one f o r m that the p a s s i o n a t e at- I w o u l d suggest. a n d are there v a r i o u s w a y s o f i n t r o j e c t i n g that O t h e r ? l a r s o c i a l f o r m s of l o v e as e t e r n a l p s y c h i c facts. O n e c a n n o t c r i t i c i z e t o o f r o m a better u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f h o w the l a w b e c o m e s the o b - far the t e r m s b y w h i c h one's existence i s s e c u r e d . A c c o r d i n g t o the l o g i c o f c o n s c i e n c e . the p a s s i o n a t e p u r s u i t o f the r e p r i m a n d i n g r e c o g n i t i o n o f the i n a u g u r a t e s the r e p e t i t i o n specific t o the s y m b o l i c . I n t e r p e l l a t i o n i s " b a r r e d " f r o m success n o t D o l a r a s a l w a y s " f a i l i n g " f u l l y t o c o n s t i t u t e subjects. n o s u c h b y a s t r u c t u r a l l y p e r m a n e n t f o r m o f p r o h i b i t i o n (or f o r e c l o - " f a i l u r e " seems a t w o r k i n the c o m p u l s o r y c h a r a c t e r o f l o v e . T h a t the subject t u r n s r o u n d o r r u s h e s t o w a r d the l a w t u a t e d f a n t a s y o f a r e t u r n that n e v e r i s o r c o u l d b e c o m p l e t e d . a n d A l t h u s s e r c o v e r s u p d r i v e n b y a l o v e o f the l a w w h i c h c a n b e satisfied o n l y b y r i t u a l t h i s n o n . a n a l y s i s . it is. t h o u g h s o c i a l i n t e r p e l l a t i o n s are d e s c r i b e d b y subject i t n a m e s .m a t e r i a l i t y b y t a l k i n g a b o u t the m a t e r i a l i t y o f i n s t i - p u n i s h m e n t . A l t h u s s e r w o u l d h a v e b e n e f i t e d o f a c r i t i c a l i n t e r r o g a t i o n o f the l a w . T h e O t h e r w h o i s lost. i s n o t m a t e r i a l . i n t r o j e c t e d . b u t a r e - t a c h m e n t t o existence takes.s c h e m e of s y m b o l i c l o g i c es- that p r e c e d e s a n d f o r m s the p o s s i b i l i t y o f l o v e . u n e x p l a i n e d the p a s s i o n that p r e c e d e s a n d f o r m s c o n s c i e n c e . the subject's existence c a n n o t b e t h i n k w e are d o i n g the o t h e r ? l i n g u i s t i c a l l y g u a r a n t e e d w i t h o u t p a s s i o n a t e a t t a c h m e n t t o the Yet D o l a r ' s s u g g e s t i o n that l o v e m i g h t b e " b e y o n d " i n t e r - l a w . a s t r a n g e scene of l o v e . suggests that the subject l i v e s in p a s s i o n a t e e x p e c t a t i o n of the Let us p r o v i s i o n a l l y accept this p s y c h o a n a l y t i c account of law. It a l s o leaves A r e these t e r m s n o t c u l t u r a l l y e l a b o r a t e d . E v e n so. w h i c h w e k n e e l a n d p r a y . b u t b y its i n a b i l i t y t o d e t e r m i n e the c o n s t i t u t i v e h e l d o f To the extent that p r i m a r y i n t r o j e c t i o n is an act of l o v e . b a r r e d O t h e r t o r e a p p e a r a s the i n t r o j e c t e d c o n d i t i o n o f s u b - The failure of interpellation is clearly to be v a l u e d . h e b e g i n s t o e x p l a i n h o w a subject i s f o r m e d t h r o u g h w h o i s s a i d t o b e c o m e the i m m a t e r i a l c o n d i t i o n o f the subject. the h u m a n . T o the extent that A l t h u s s e r gestures t o w a r d t h i s t u t i o n s a n d p r a c t i c e s " (89). a n d e v e n c o n s i d e r t h i s o w n state. r i t u a l i z e d . B u t w h a t i s t o k e e p u s f r o m i s t o b e f o u n d p r e c i s e l y i n the p a s s i o n a t e a t t a c h m e n t that a l s o m a k i n g the a n a l o g y that w e f a l l i n l o v e i n m u c h the s a m e w a y a l l o w s i t t o w o r k . i n d e e d . ject of p a s s i o n a t e a t t a c h m e n t . n o t a n act p e r f o r m e d o n l y once. the p u n c - state. F o r the B u t i f the d i s c u r s i v e p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r existence e x c e e d the c o n s c i e n c e w h i c h c o m p e l s the w a y w a r d p e d e s t r i a n t o t u r n r e p r i m a n d v o i c e d b y the l a w . to f i g u r e that f a i l u r e in t e r m s that r e h a b i l i t a t e a s t r u c t u r e of are there o t h e r f o r m s o f " l o s i n g " the O t h e r that are n o t i n t r o - l o v e o u t s i d e the d o m a i n o f the s o c i a l r i s k s r e i f y i n g p a r t i c u - j e c t i o n . i t f o r m s the subject f o r m a t i o n . but ject f o r m a t i o n . T h i s c o m p l i c i t y a t o n c e c o n d i t i o n s a n d l i m i t s the v i a b i l i t y p e l l a t i o n i s a n i m p o r t a n t one. o n e that ac- capes the h e r m e n e u t i c s o f s o c i a l d e s c r i p t i o n ? c o u n t s for the f a i l u r e o f i n t e r p e l l a t i o n f u l l y t o c o n s t i t u t e the S i g n i f i c a n t l y . t h e n the f a i l u r e o f i n t e r p e l l a t i o n i t e r a t e d a n d i n d e e d r i t u a l affair. c o n c e d e that the subject c a n n o t f o r m e x c e p t p a s s i o n a t e c i r c l e i n w h i c h the subject b e c o m e s e n s n a r e d b y its t h r o u g h a b a r r e d r e l a t i o n t o the O t h e r .

a n a g e n c y that m i g h t r e r e a d " b e i n g " a s p r e c i s e l y the p o t e n t i a l i t y that r e m a i n s o u t r u n s a n d c o u n t e r s the c o n d i t i o n s o f its e m e r g e n c e . s u c h a slave m o r a l i t y m a y b e p r e d i cated u p o n the s o b e r c a l c u l a t i o n that i t i s better t o " b e " e n s l a v e d i n s u c h a w a y t h a n n o t t o " b e " a t a l l . however. b u t t h e y i n d i c a t e a d i r e c t i o n for t h i n k i n g that i s p e r h a p s p r i o r t o the q u e s t i o n o f c o n s c i e n c e . b u t b y l a w s o f v a r i o u s k i n d s s u c h that w e y i e l d t o s u b o r d i n a t i o n i n o r d e r t o m a i n t a i n s o m e sense o f s o c i a l " b e i n g " ? . w e a w a y f r o m the l a w .T 130 Althusser's "Conscience Doth M a k e Subjects of Us A l l " 131 Subjection c o n d i t i o n s u n d e r w h i c h o u r v e r y sense o f l i n g u i s t i c s u r v i v a l I n c o n c l u s i o n . that humans are not. that they are simply consigned to nothingness and therefore can freely decide whether to be or not to be. k i n d of b e i n g . i n w h i c h a t t a i n i n g r e c o g n i z a b l e b e i n g r e q u i r e s self- tance f r o m a n y p a r t i c u l a r f o r m a t i o n o f c o n s c i e n c e : negation. even m o r e ethical. at a d i s - that is. b u t c a n n o t u n d o its o w n a different k i n d o f t u r n . requires existing as a self-negating b e i n g in order to a t t a i n a n d p r e s e r v e a status as " b e i n g " at a l l ? I n a N i e t z s c h e a n v e i n . W h a t f o r m s m i g h t l i n g u i s t i c s u r v i v a l t a k e i n t h i s d e - t o w a r d a m o r e o p e n . T h r o u g h what terms w o u l d it be recognized a n d recognizable? S u c h q u e s t i o n s c a n n o t b e a n s w e r e d here. a n d m o s t r e c e n t l y . n a m e l y . something. A g a m b e n offers u s one d i r e c t i o n f o r r e t h i n k - depends u p o n our willingness to t u r n back u p o n ourselves. N i e t z s c h e . S u c h a failure of a t u r n d e m a n d s a w i l l i n g n e s s not to b e — a c r i t i c a l desubjec- i n t e r p e l l a t i o n m a y w e l l u n d e r m i n e the c a p a c i t y o f the subject t i v a t i o n — i n o r d e r t o e x p o s e the l a w a s less p o w e r f u l t h a n i t t o " b e " i n a s e l f . but this is not an essence nor properly a thing: It is the simple fact of one's own existence as possibility or potentiality. no ethical experience w o u l d be p o s s i b l e . G i o r g i o A g a m b e n : H o w are w e to u n d e r s t a n d the d e s i r e to be as a c o n s t i t u t i v e d e s i r e ? R e s i t u ating conscience a n d interpellation w i t h i n such an account. and do not have to be. w i t h o u t d e n y i n g our c o m p l i c i t y A g a m b e n m i g h t b e r e a d a s c l a i m i n g that t h i s p o s s i b i l i t y i n the l a w that w e o p p o s e ? S u c h p o s s i b i l i t y w o u l d r e q u i r e m u s t r e s o l v e itself i n t o s o m e t h i n g . t u r n s status a s p o s s i b i l i t y t h r o u g h s u c h a r e s o l u t i o n . S u c h unexhausted by any particular interpellation. This does not mean. There is in effect something that humans are and have to be. 20 being elsewhere or otherwise. we m i g h t then a d d to this question another: H o w is such a d e s i r e e x p l o i t e d n o t o n l y b y a l a w i n the s i n g u l a r . one of s u b j e c t i v i z e d d o m a i n ? H o w w o u l d one k n o w one's existence? o r for the f u t u r e . o n e that. O r . . h e n c e . this or that destiny. . to adopt or not to adopt this or that destiny (nihilism and decisionism coincide at this point). r e s i s t i n g its l u r e o f i d e n t i t y . rather.i d e n t i c a l sense. U n d e r w h a t c o n d i t i o n s does a l a w m o n o p o l i z e the t e r m s o f existence i n s o t h o r o u g h a w a y ? O r is t h i s a t h e o l o g i c a l f a n t a s y of the l a w ? Is there a p o s s i b i l i t y of if human beings were or had to be this or that substance. the q u e s t i o n that p r e o c c u p i e d S p i n o z a . e n a b l e d b y the l a w . B u t the t e r m s that c o n s t r a i n the o p t i o n t o b e i n g v e r s u s n o t b e i n g " c a l l f o r " a n o t h e r k i n d o f r e s p o n s e . i n g ethics a l o n g the l i n e s of the d e s i r e to be. b u t i t m a y a l s o m a r k the p a t h seems. .