Talk:Point de capiton

From No Subject - Encyclopedia of Psychoanalysis
Jump to: navigation, search


The signifiers or signifying chain are unstable and liable to slippages of meaning.

How does an ideology maintain its consistency? What keeps of ideological field of meaning consistent? Any given ideological field is "quilted" by the point de capiton A point de capiton unifies an ideological field and provides it with an identity.

What is at issue in the conflict of ideologies is precisely the point de capiton.

Signifiers such as "freedom", "democracy", "human rights," etc. are open-ended. Their meanings can slide about depending on the context of their use.

For example, a right-wing interpretation of the word "freedom" might use it to designate the freedom to speculate on the market, whereas a left-wing interpretation of it might use it designate freedom from the inequalities of the market.

The word "freedom" therefore does not mean the same thing in all possible worlds: what pins its meaning down is the point de capiton.


Perhaps the most important feature of the point de capiton is that the stability it provides is, however necessary, an illusion.

The point de capiton is an instance of imaginary identification disrupting the integrity and rationality of the symbolic order itself.

Though these disruptions are strictly speaking inimical to the symbolic order, they are also vital to its existence as a field for producing meaning, for such disruptions serve to anchor the signifying chain and keep it from devolving into a psychotic process of pure linguistic self-referentiality without even the illusion of external reference.