The “best sellers” list subverts our thinking about discourse. In unexpressed complicity with our ordinary, everyday understanding, two simple newspaper columns inscribe the dichotomous structure of the world. Let’s be clear from the outset: either it’s fiction, we insist, or it’s fact. Beneath this obvious dichotomy, however, lurks a more insidious presumption: for the distinction fiction/non-fiction also contains the bifurcated and mutually exclusive denomination “imaginary”/“real.” Fiction is therefore thought of as nothing more or less than an evasion — at best, a divertissement. This dichotomous (mis)construction, moreover, assumes, beneath its facade of determinacy and correctness, the very “truth” it claims to seek: for with the identification of fiction/imaginary and non-fiction/real, there also obtains a further identification. Fiction is false; non-fiction is true. Are we not, here, once again entrapped in the snare of the subject-object dichotomy? For isn’t it the case that, when all is said and done, fiction hereby understood is simply bequeathed to that nebulous, naive, and ultimately insignificant domain of subjectivity, whereas non-fiction, conversely, acquires its value precisely insofar as and to the extent that it addresses the object and represents nothing less than the discourse of what we commonly refer to as the “real world”?


Empty Space Partial Drive Quantum Wave Function Everyday Understanding True World 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Jacques Lacan, “The Partial Drive and its Circuit,”The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psycho-Analysis,trans. Alan Sheridan ( New York: W. W. Norton, 1978 ), p. 182.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Maurice Merleau-Ponty, “Working Notes,”The Visible and the Invisible,trans. Alphonso Lingis ( Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1968 ), pp. 263–64.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Cf. Soren Kierkegaard,The Concept of Irony,trans. Lee M. Capel (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1968), pp. 56–57Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Jacques Lacan, “Anamorphosis,”The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psycho-Analysis,pp. 82–83. Cf. also: “The privilege of the subject seems to be established here from that bipolareflexive relation by which, as soon as I perceive, my representations belong to me.” (p. 81)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Martin Heidegger, “Aletheia (Heraclitus, Fragment B 16),”Early Greek Thinking,trans. David Farrell Krell and Frank A. Capuzzi ( New York: Harper and Row, 1975 ), pp. 106–07.Google Scholar
  6. 7.
    Max Scheler, “Idealism and Realism,”Selected Philosophical Essays,trans. David R. Lachterman ( Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1973 ), p. 331.Google Scholar
  7. 17.
    Quoted in John Sallis, “Meaning Adrift,”Heidegger Studies,1 (1985), p. 93.Google Scholar
  8. 19.
    Quoted in Robert Waelder, “Psychic Determinism and the Possibility of Predictions,”Psychoanalytic Quarterly,32 (1963), p. 18.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Dolis
    • 1
  1. 1.University of BucharestItaly

Personalised recommendations