And by a prudent flight and cunning save A life which valour could not, from the grave. A better buckler I can soon regain, But who can get another life again? Archilochus

Sunday, February 5, 2023

On Most Grand Narratives

Slavoj Žižek , "Covering up the impact of trauma with symbolic images" (Google Translate from Turkish)
pre: Angelus Novus)

His fellow theologians who visited Job, who suffered great disasters, suggested that Job attach meaning to the disasters he experienced with their comments. The real greatness shown by Job is that he insists on the meaninglessness of the disasters he has experienced rather than defending his innocence. When God finally appears, the defender of faith confirms Job's attitude toward the theologians.

The same structure exists in a Freudian dream: Irma's injection At the very beginning of his dream, Freud is talking to Irma, whose treatment is disrupted by an inflammatory injection. As he speaks, Freud approaches Irma, sees her face and mouth, and notices the eerie of the live red flesh inside his mouth. At this moment of unbearable horror, the tonality of the dream suddenly changes and it turns into comedy: three doctors appear, friends of Freud, they tell in ridiculous professional jargon that it is not anyone's fault that Irma became inflamed from the injection, but enumerating numerous mutually exclusive reasons: it could not have already been injected, the injection was sterile, and so on.

At first there is the traumatic encounter, there is the confrontation with the raw flesh in Irma's throat, then suddenly it turns into comedy, three ridiculous doctors negotiate to save Freud from facing the actual trauma in the dream. The function of these three doctors is the same as that of the three theological friends who visit Job: to conceal the impact of trauma in symbolic images.

(from Slavoj Žižek, The Book of Violence)
Turkish: Işık Barış Fidaner

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