By Henry Bond
What if Jacques Lacan—the superb and whimsical Parisian psychoanalyst—had labored as a police detective, employing his theories to resolve crimes? this can conjure up a psychological movie clip starring Peter dealers in a trench coat, yet in Lacan on the Scene, Henry Bond makes a significant and provocative declare: that it seems that impenetrable occasions of violent loss of life might be extra successfully unraveled with Lacan's conception of psychoanalysis than with problematic, technologically complex forensic instruments. Bond's exposition on homicide expands and develops a resolutely iekian procedure. looking for radical and unforeseen readings, Bond unpacks his fabric using Lacan's neurosis-psychosis-perversion grid. Bond areas Lacan on the crime scene and builds his argument via a sequence of archival crime scene pictures from the 1950s—the interval while Lacan was once constructing his influential theories. Bond takes us contained in the perimeter set by way of police tape, guiding us right into a sequence of specific, even terrifying, homicide scenes. it's not the horror of the ravished and mutilated corpses that attracts his realization; as a substitute, he interrogates doubtless minor info from the typical, separating and rephotographing what at the beginning turns out insignificant: a unmarried high-heeled shoe on a kitchen desk; conscientiously folded outfits put over a chair; a plate of chocolate biscuits on a dinner desk; lewd graffiti inscribed on a educate carriage door; an association of workman's instruments in a woodland clearing. From those mundane information he rigorously builds a powerful and entire handbook for Lacanian crime research which can stand beside the FBI's standard-issue Crime type guide. brief Circuits sequence
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Extra resources for Lacan at the Scene
The photographs in this series depict a crime that was perpetrated outside- out in the open-on a lawn or front garden, at night . It can be seen in photograph 3 . 4 that a body has been discovered more or less outs ide a private hous e . There are blown leaves on the grass and the path; without the execrable constituent it would remain a typically English suburban scene . In several of the cases that I annotate elsewhere in the text , a cadaver has been discovered in an appropriately bleak o r alienating environment like a bomb site or a gloomy textiles factory-somewhere that is, at least , a private place .
3 depicts what might b e describ e d as the kill e r ' s p o int of view of this d e ath scene . The p olice photographer has captured, highly unusually, an angle which re cords not the typ ical view toward the c a d aver, but instead a reve rse shot. I t i s a phot ograph that do cuments a look back : the place where the criminal acted is now surround e d by the l o oks of the Law . And-in relati o n to the ab ove p o int-this ramshackl e group of men in overcoats , who l o o k o n (hands in p o ckets, o r hands on hips, qui etly impress e d , even fas c i nat ed) , do i n d e e d s e e m t o be l o oking at the exposed alluring-body in a manner that raises the specter of guilty pleasure , o r even the discovery of a dirty s e c r e t .
1 09 26 H A R D EVI D E N C E STRUCTURALIST L I N G U ISTIC T H E O RY AS S C H EMATIZEO BY F E R O I N A N D DE SAU S S U R E- H AS R E G U LARLY BEEN D EPLOYED IN O R D E R TO ASSERT THAT VISUAL ELEMENTS IN A P H OTOGRAPH ( O R F I L M F R A M E ) MAY B E B R D K E N DOWN A N D I N T E R P R ETED T H R O U G H T H E C D N C E PTUAL F R A M E WORK O F SIGNIFI ERISI G N I FIED. CONSIDERING THE PHOTO G RAPH I C TAB LEAU. BARTH ES NOTES THAT "MEAN I N G COMES FROM THE OBJECTS PHDTOGRAPHED IWH E REBY] .
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