The Love of Truth by Jean-Luc Monnier


“What is the love of truth? It’s something that mocks the lack in being (manque à être) of truth. We could call this lack in being something else – a lack of forgetting, which reminds us of its existence in the formations of the unconscious. This is nothing of the order of being, of a being that is in any way full. What is this indestructible desire Freud speaks at the end of his Traumdeutung? What is this desire that nothing can change or deflect, when everything else changes? The lack of forgetting is the same thing as the lack in being, since being is nothing other than forgetting. The love of truth is the love of this weakness whose veil we have lifted, it’s the love of what truth hides, which is called castration.”1

I find this quote interesting because it echoes what Jacques-Alain Miller says of the unconscious and the speaking body when he speaks of the stepladder and sublimation. I quote: “The escabeau is sublimation, but in so far as it is grounded on the first I’m not thinking of the parlêtre. What is this I’m not thinking? It is the negation of the unconscious by which the parlêtre believes himself to be master of his Being.”2

(1) Lacan, J., Seminar Book XVII, The Other Side of Psychoanalysis (1969-1970), ed. J.-A. Miller, transl. R. Grigg, Norton, New York/London, 2007, p. 52.

(2) Miller J.-A., “The Unconscious and the Speaking Body”, transl. A. R. Price, Presentation of the theme for the Tenth Congress of the WAP, Rio, 2016; Hurly-Burly, No. 12, 2015, p. 127;

Translated by Janet Haney