Deleted Scenes

Recently excised from the ‘What’s in a Name?’/’Identity Crisis’/??? subsection of Chapter 2.  Clipped for being wordy, jargony, and too on-the-nose.  The Derrida ref didn’t help, even though I’m a Derridean:

Superman is weird because he seems so cleanly iconic but has so many different names![1] 


[1] Superman, in his mediated status as a current pop culture figure, is an example of psycho-socio-historical, imaginative, often explicitly narrativized discourse.  But this is where naming becomes qualitatively distinct from categorization or even definition, for, despite all the complexity of that string of adjectives, what more contextualized material–such as feelings or  prioritized memories that reinforce the trace of the character–do we call up for ourselves in the utterance of his name?  ‘This looks like a job for Superman!  Don’t you want to deepen your voice a bit as you say it?

Thanatos The Unquestionable

So, in my few hours of research on the diminishment, malformation, or absence of the death drive and the potential effects of such a situation, I’ve been a little surprised to have found just frickin’ nothing.  

Freud himself said that just about any of the psychical structures he identified could be absent or aberrant in anybody.  Am I looking in the wrong places–certainly a possibility–or has this concept/structure just gotten by without any such critical consideration?  Do we just presume everyone has a death drive and it’s always only ever appropriately- or overly- functional, and that’s it?

Random Theory

The real, in a Lacanian sense, is bigger than the sum total of human knowledge, if only by mass; we can at least know that what we don’t yet know is bigger than what we know, if only because we can see so many places, out in space, that we haven’t yet been able to visit.  But language–human reality–gets the upper hand and becomes the predator, the master and quantifier of even the unknown, through that one little word, articulated whenever necessary: ‘yet’.  Even if there is an infinitude that we don’t know, even that infinitude only ever gets smaller, since what we know generally only ever gets bigger.

Deleted Scenes

A footnote and accompanying media cut from the following, which is, itself, part of an upcoming piece on the Marvel Omniverse:

…if superhero film narratives are inspired by superhero comic narratives, the whole #itsallconnected ethos only adds the complication of replacing ageing human actors to the problematics of multiversal/time-travelling/title-hopping/otherwise-conveniently-present characters interacting with themselves, others, themselves-as-others, and others-as-themselves.[1]


[1] A little tangentially: I still don’t get how Logan St. Claire is supposed to be a version of Quinn Mallory.  Gender-swap, fine, but why would they have different last names if they’re ‘genetically identical’???  WTF???

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Also some bullshit.  DROP ZIGGY, YOU FRAUD!!!

Thought Experiment

Here’s something fun.  You can actually do it if you want, but I think reading it’s probably just as effective for getting the idea across:

On a sheet of paper, with a pencil, write anything you want–something short, to keep this manageable; maybe something about how awesome your day’s going to be.  Then, just to double down, write it all over again, just the same.

Now, erase the first version.  Put the paper aside and go to your computer or phone.  In some text field somewhere, type another message to yourself: maybe it’s different, though the possibilities for questioning seem exponentially increased if it’s the same as the message you originally wrote.  At any rate, make sure you do it at the very beginning of the text field.

Whatever you’ve chosen to type out, skip a few lines and do it again.  Don’t copy and paste, either; go through the motions again, pay attention to the fact that you’re doing what you’re doing.

Now, of course, erase the first version and all the spaces before the second.  There should only be one version of the statement on your screen, at the very beginning of the text field.

So, now, what’s on your screen?  Is it the ‘Second’ version of the message?  If so, why?  What, at this point, distinguishes what’s there now from what was there when you typed the message originally?  You can clearly see that the two versions of the message you wrote are still two versions, despite the fact that one was ‘erased’ (its space, its impression maintained).  And, if you typed the same message that you wrote, how many versions of that message exist now?  Is it some different number than once existed?  Does the difference matter?

Random Theory

Barthes, from ‘An Introduction to the Structural Analysis of Narrative’:

‘…formalization is a generalization that differs from other generalizations.’

My version:

  1. The word is not the thing. (Actually, Korzybski’s version here.)
  2. The word ‘thing’ is not the thing.
  3. The word ‘thing’ is not other words.
  4. ‘Thing’, as a general(izing/izable) word, holds a different function in linguistic structuration than other words.

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