This essay discusses a remark on the eye and the mouth in Bersani and Dutoit’s Caravaggio’s Secrets that links Caravaggio to Samuel Beckett. Exploring the idea of the gaze and the voice as “things” rather than objects that confirm the subject in its place, and connecting Bersani’s understanding of the thing as escaping the subject-object relation in Beckett to Jacques Lacan’s objet petit a, the essay posits this understanding of the thing as the basis of Bersani’s interest in the possibility of a nonrelational sociality.
david lloyd, Distinguished Professor of English at the University of California, Riverside, works primarily on Irish culture and on postcolonial, settler-colonial, cultural, and aesthetic theory. His most recent critical books include Counterpoetics of Modernity: On Irish Poetry and Modernism (Edinburgh University Press, 2022), Under Representation: The Racial Regime of Aesthetics (Fordham University Press, 2019), and Beckett’s Thing: Painting and Theatre (Edinburgh University Press, 2016).
David Lloyd; Things. differences 1 May 2023; 34 (1): 259–266. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/10407391-10435885
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