The Sinthome in instrumental music: The case of Schubert

Tarrant, Christopher (2017) The Sinthome in instrumental music: The case of Schubert. International Journal of Žižek Studies, 11 (3). ISSN 1751-8229

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Official URL: http://zizekstudies.org/index.php/IJZS/article/vie...

Abstract

The concept of the sinthome (or ‘sinthom’ in English) - the construction which provides a unique structuring of jouissance, but which is divested of any symbolic meaning - arrived late in Lacan’s work, in his seminar on 1975-6. The sinthom’s most notable application in Žižek’s output is found in Part I of his The Sublime Object of Ideology, in which he explores the homology between the form of commodities and of dreams. It has since been used widely in discussions of literature, art, and cinema, but is missing from musicology, aside from the occasional remark from Žižek himself. This paper demonstrates that the medial caesura which deflects the tonal trajectory of a sonata exposition, and not the themes themselves, should be identified as the locus of this aspect of Schubert’s compositional voice. Drawing on ideas emerging from Žižek’s critique of Hitchcock, the aim is to demonstrate how the Lacanian concept of the sinthom reveals a deeper, more fundamental intertextuality in Schubert’s compositional project than has hitherto been available.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Schubert, sonata theory, Lacan, psychoanalysis, Žižek, medial caesura, sinthom
Faculty: Faculty of Arts, Law & Social Sciences
Depositing User: Ian Walker
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2017 16:40
Last Modified: 24 Apr 2019 09:35
URI: http://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/702525

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