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Voices That Matter

Voices That Matter

Chapter:
(p.339) Voices That Matter
Source:
The Voice as Something More
Author(s):
Mladen Dolar
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226656427.003.0018

This chapter reflects on some problems raised in Mladen Dolar’s A Voice and Nothing More (2006) from the author’s position of hindsight, concentrating on three issues. First, the aesthetics of the voice: whereas focusing on voice as an aesthetic object risks turning voice into a fetish, obfuscating its psychoanalytic value as an “object a,” the chapter argues that voice never allows for a simple alternative between fetish or “object,” but rather that the proper object of aesthetics is actually the split between the two. Second, the intersection at which voice exists: the paradoxical object voice can be placed at the intersection of body and language, the somatic and the signifier, but the intersecting areas have no ontological priority or independence; instead voice functions as the agent of their split, blurring their seemingly self-evident dichotomy. Third, the echo: voice always entails an echo, even if inaudible, which testifies to the split nature of the object voice itself, entangling it in a web of repetitions, where it doesn’t coincide with either the original or the echo. Written as an afterword, the chapter also reflects on contributions to the volume.

Keywords:   voice, aesthetics, intersection, echo, fetish, object a, objet petit a

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