The Object Seminar: Breaking Boundaries with Frédéric Baitinger

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The Graduate Center, CUNY

365 5th Avenue

Room 9207

New York, NY 10016

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Join us for the first seminar of this exciting new series "The Object Seminar: Breaking Boundaries" led by Frédéric Baitinger, titled "Thou Shalt Enjoy Thy Object As Thyself." The seminar is free and open to the public, but to attend, please RSVP.

Thou Shalt Enjoy Thy Object As Thyself

This is our new metaphysics, our new religious commandment: thou shalt enjoy thy object as thyself. As in the famous poem by Baudelaire The Pipe, we are no longer consumers, but we are literally consumed by our objects. They have become our primary source of enjoyment, not to say of addiction. We are completely riveted to our phone, to our computer, to our Facebook account, our Instagram account, our Seamless account, our Spotify account, etc. In a sense, one could even say that our relationships to objects are about to replace the relationships we had before to others, not to say to our significant other. For each one of our needs, there always exists an object, an app, or a delivery service that will satisfy it. It is thus as if each one of us could live, and be entirely satisfied, while being only connected to objects, and not, as it was the case before, to real people. This is why the psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan suggested, as early as in the mid 70s, that what lurks underneath this omnipresence of the object is, actually, the “absence of sexual relationship between the sexes.” And this absence of sexual relationship between the sexes is itself grounded on an ultimate object—called object a—which encapsulates each one of us in its own perverse fantasy.

The Object Seminar: Breaking Boundaries series is co-organized and sponsored by the Henri Peyre French Institute, and The Object Library from the Center for the Humanities at the Graduate Center, CUNY.

Frédéric Baitinger is a PhD candidate in the French Program at the The Graduate Center of the City University of New York, where he is completing his dissertation, The Subject of Jouissance, under the direction of Professor Royal S. Brown. His areas of specialization include French literature and visual culture, with a focus on Avant-Garde literature and visual art, continental philosophy, psychoanalysis, postcolonial studies and critical race theory. He is an adjunct lecturer at Hunter College, a member of the International Association of Art Critics, and an active participant of the Lacanian Compass, an affiliated group of the New Lacanian School. He has published many articles, and book chapters, such as “Socrates as an Analyst: “A Reading of Transference in the Present” for the Palegrave’s book series on Lacan. “Me Too” and The Weakness of Manhood,” for the journal Europe Now. And “To Believe Weeping: Writing the Feminine with Cixous, Bataille and Lacan,” for the Sino-American Journal of Comparative Literature.

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The Graduate Center, CUNY

365 5th Avenue

Room 9207

New York, NY 10016

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