The search for obstacles … is part of the endless, baffled inquiry into the nature of the object. I know what something or someone is by finding out what comes between us.
the wish to be understood may be our most vengeful demand, may be the way we hang on, as adults, to our grudge against [the Other] for not meeting our every need.
The obstacle provides us with … the pleasure to be got from successfully circumventing the obstacle.
my book on Lenin was almost turned down by Verso. Why? Well, they always used to hint that I only make jokes. So then I told them, now, you have a book on Lenin. Then, their approach was: ‘Where are the jokes? Nobody will buy this book!’
the problem is not what we are thinking when we do other, ordinary things, but what we are thinking (fantasising) when we are ‘doing that’ - the Lacanian notion that ‘there is no sexual relationship’ ultimately means that, while we are ‘doing that’, while we are engaged in the sexual act itself, we need some fantasmatic supplement, we have to think (fantasise) about something else. We cannot simply fully immerse ourselves into the immediate pleasure of what we are doing - if we do that, the pleasurable tension gets lost.
The impossible fulness at the level of meaning (of the signified) is sustained by the void (the castrating dimension) at the level of the signifier. … Apropos of some notion, we enthusiastically feel that ‘this is it, the true thing, the true meaning’, although we are never able to explicate what, precisely, this meaning is.
You can’t will anything. Not even solitude is an act of will. You simply endure it. You must hold on until the very end