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1. The Sirens’ Song

Korten, David C. Berrett-Koehler Publishers PDF

Chapter 1

The Sirens’ Song

Economic self-interest has always been central to the organization of societies and the advancement of individuals. But the defining characteristic of the postmodern political era is the absolute domination of money as the organizing principle of human and international relations. Some days there seems to be nothing else.


The world of material mechanics, which still holds sway over most minds and is the official science “story” of the mass media, is a world of scarcity (because matter is finite, because it has a limited capacity to fulfill us). It spawns violence by telling us that we are separate: “I can hurt you without hurting the larger whole that includes myself—and since there isn’t enough for both of us, we have a reason to fight each other.”


in the epic greek poem The Odyssey, Circe warns Odysseus about the dangers that lie ahead on his journey home from Troy:

First thou shalt arrive where the enchanter Sirens dwell, they who seduce men. The imprudent man who draws near them never returns, for the Sirens, lying in the flower-strewn fields, will charm him with sweet song; but around them the bodies of their victims lie in heaps. Therefore pass these Sirens by, and stop your men’s ears with wax that none of them may hear; but if you like you can listen yourself, for you may get the men to

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Philosophies of Freedom (1928)

LARRY A HICKMAN Indiana University Press ePub

A recent book on Sovereignty concludes a survey of various theories on that subject with the following words: “The career of the notion of sovereignty illustrates the general characteristics of political thinking. The various forms of the notion have been apologies for causes rather than expressions of the disinterested love of knowledge. The notion has meant many things at different times; and the attacks upon it have sprung from widely different sources and been directed toward a multiplicity of goals. The genesis of all political ideas is to be understood in terms of their utility rather than of their truth and falsity.”1 Perhaps the same thing may be said of moral notions; I do not think there is any doubt that freedom is a word applied to many things of varied plumage and that it owes much of its magic to association with a variety of different causes. It has assumed various forms as needs have varied; its “utility” has been its service in helping men deal with many predicaments.

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6 Serial Migration: Stories of Home and Belonging in Diaspora | Lok Siu

Sukanya Banerjee Indiana University Press ePub


Growing up in Hong Kong and, later, Southern California, I had imagined the world to be much smaller than I know it to be now. It had to do with the way my parents talked about family and friends who were living in other parts of the world but whose thoughts and experiences were conveyed with such a sense of immediacy and proximity that I simply assumed they were “close by.” Places with strange names were made familiar—and somehow physically near as well—with stories, stories about my grandfather who worked on a fishing boat in Australia or my aunt who moved to Singapore for love, or my uncle who lived in Nicaragua with his wife and seven children, and so on and so forth. Certainly, my family’s long history of dispersal to different parts of the world has informed my understanding of diaspora and migration; it has made me more attuned to the messiness, unevenness, and meaningfulness of migration. So when I began my research with diasporic Chinese in Panama, I was not entirely surprised by how often migration emerged as a central theme in conversations. But what was striking was the way diasporic Chinese repeatedly situated their own migration routes within a longer history of family migrations. It was done almost without exception. Listening to their detailed accounts of unintended moves, not so voluntary relocations, and various attempts at family reunification, I came to recognize not just the significance of the actual migrations but also the role that these narratives played in articulating a distinct diasporic subjectivity. This essay, then, examines four migration stories in order to illustrate how migration, as both social experience and narrative trope, has shaped diasporic Chinese subject formation and their understandings of belonging in diaspora.

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5: Work from the Zone

Flicker, Barry Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Since you’re concerned about meeting resistance, let’s start by considering how we might gain the buy-in of others,” I said as I threw several scraps of paper on the floor. “For example, who wants to volunteer to clean up these scraps of paper?”

Nobody volunteered.

“Come on, Al. How about you?”

“Sorry, it’s not in my job description.”

“Ellen, can you help out?”

“How soon do you need it done?” she wanted to know.

“Right away.”

“That’s not possible. I’ve got half a dozen priority assignments that are already running late.”

“Somebody, please. Dave, what about you?”

“I’ve never really done that kind of work before,” he whined, to the delight of the group. “I really think you should give such an important assignment to somebody more experienced. How about Brenda?”

“Don’t you be looking at me,” said Brenda, “unless you’re going to tell me how to deal with all those excuses. What you just went through is what I face every single day.”

“Let’s run the experiment one more time,” I suggested.56

This time I grabbed a wad of bills from my pocket and tossed them into the air so that they fluttered to the floor. Amid the laughter, Christi pretended to lunge out of her seat eager to help me clean up the scattered twenty-dollar bills.

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Chapter Five: The Training of the School

Tardits, Annie Karnac Books ePub

In order to explore the logic of the new training Lacan expected from his school, “a new training that would not be a lie”, we have chosen to follow the divisions of the three sections of the Freudian School of Paris to the letter. These divisions did not distinguish between work, research, and training; they did not retain the differentiation between basic and further training current in professional trainings. In 1965, the cartels were recorded in the School’s annual according to these sections; the preparatory work for the first Study Days of 1966 was grouped along the same lines.

Related knowledge

In 1953, the malaise in relation to training was not confined to France or localized only in the discords of power; it touched on the very transmission of knowledge. Robert Knight related it to the absence of a master, the number of candidates, and their mediocrity: they do not read, they only want to finish their training as quickly as possible, and they are more interested in the clinic than in research and theory (Knight, 1953, quoted by Lacan, 1966, p. 295 [the references to the Écrits are designated E]). Lacan did not reject these remarks, but, for him, they did not identify the real root of the evil: “pre-digested” knowledge taught in the institution has no value as training; when knowledge aims at systematizing rather than real formalization, its transmission has effects of “disintellec-tualization”. Knowledge, then, remains subject to effects of imaginary capture, more concerned with the “deposition” of experience than in its “mainsprings”; everyone can “poach there to their hearts’ content”, and technique becomes dull and worn down. This capture is particularly evident in research, in which analysts have lost themselves in a beyond of discourse, making of the imaginary the norm of the real, where Freud had tried to distinguish them by subordinating the imaginary to symbolic determination. To misrec-ognize this determination produces a form of analphabetism: the major forms of the unconscious (the word-with-word of metonymy, the word-for-word of metaphor) and the syntax of the phrase of the phantasy, which alone can “free the augury from its desire for entrails”, are cast aside in favour of psychological fantasies, which vary with fashion.

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