Post-structuralism has bequeathed to us an epistemology in which the divisions between binary opposites are blurred and permeable. Yet the evidence of our senses and the demands of research and daily life compel us to be ‘pragmatic’, to distinguish between fact and feeling, between the subjective and objective, between qualitative and quantitative. This paper offers no solution to this dilemma. Instead, it proposes a Lacanian psychoanalytic model in which subjectivity and objectivity are fluid categories in which material is constantly recycled in a circulatory movement. Further, it suggests that this motility arises precisely from the subject’s pragmatic—though false—distinction between the subjective and objective. It achieves this by examining one scholar’s investigation into national identity, therein identifying pressures impinging upon all social research.
|Keywords:||Subjectivity, Objectivity, Lacan, Psychoanalysis, Unconscious, National Identity|
PhD Candidate, Politics and Public Policy, Griffith University, Nathan Campus, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia