Friday, 15 June 2007

Paging Dr. Freud "Making up" was the most essential activity of Pussy Jones' childhood: "Making up" began for her when [she] was four or five, and the family had just moved to Europe. She had begun inventing stories before then—from the moment she could remember, in fact—but now she "found the necessary formula." The "formula" is described very precisely: it was ritualistic, solitary and very physical. She had to have a book in her hands, preferably with lots of thick black type, and she would walk rapidly up and down in an "ecstasy" of invention, turning the pages as if reading, regardless of whether the book was upside down or not, and improvising out loud, and very fast, an imaginary story ... Her account of "the ecstasy which transported my little body" is extremely erotic: there is evidently something masturbatory and orgasmic about these "enraptured sessions." When Pussy Jones* writes of "making up" in her unpublished novel Literature, she does so through the character of a young boy who, of course, she christens "Dick Thaxter." Names are important. Lacan said so. To relate something I wrote back before you read me—when I thought differently about psychoanalysis, and a mere two days after I announced the arrival of a fantastic new blog—a Lacanian with whom I briefly shared an office once told me: Lacan thought seriously about names and their effect on development. I don't see anything wrong with teaching a lesson in a freshman composition class on how Richard Caputo's politics derive from the fact that he is, nominally and probably actually too, a "dick head." In light of this, I can only conclude that Pussy rewriting her masturbatory "make up" sessions as a Dick extremely significant. Would that I knew how. *Better known by her given and married names, Edith Wharton. The quote is from Hermione Lee's new biography, which is as good as advertised. In one of those tangled online coincidences, a search for "Hermione Lee" on the LRB site returns her review of this book, currently gracing my sidebar; even more tangled and coincidental, a search for "Edith Wharton" returns a host of articles written by a woman of no small recent interest. The internet is not as large as it looks. At the very least, today it contains the allusive density of a dream. How very apropos.
(Before I saw Casper's email, I'd intended to write another post about Edith Wharton. I apologize to those of you who read me for, well, what I write. You shouldn't be subjected to this. So more on Wharton tomorrow. Also, I've posted more today than I've ever posted on a single day before, which is ... a dubious distinction. I'll be posting less frequently, but more substantially, very soon.) Is it against the law to request the IP address of someone who refuses to provide identifying information for the purposes of having his lawyer contact them? Is it a felony? According to someone, it may be "solicitation to commit a felony/conspiracy and solicitation to commit a felony/substantial battery." Given that I acquired his IP address from the very email he sent me, I wonder whether he is himself complicit (thus culpable) in this conspiracy? As you might imagine, someone has forwarded another email. It is over 2,500 words long and apparently took him two days to compose. I'll post the "highlights" below the fold, but let me take a moment to explain why I'm not simply letting this drop. I received hundreds of emails—which I'm responding to, albeit slowly—from people who have been harassed by the likes of Casper. Most were women. Most had no way to respond. I'm lucky enough to have a wide enough audience to publicly shame Casper for his abusive behavior. It is not acceptable. His words drip with privilege, born of race and class, bolstered by his belief that he's superior to those he claims to defend. His treatment of Kevin is typical. It may seem hypocritical of me to speak for those who can't while mocking him for doing the same, but there is one crucial difference: I don't assume anyone incapable of self-defense. I know people had no recourse, that they were happy that someone stood up to an online bully. He assumes all African-Americans unable to mount any sort of defense against a "racist" like me. That he sends his emails to everyone who looks African-American at UCI is significant. One recipient of Casper's mass-mailing wrote me back surmising, correctly, why he, a native of Nigeria, had been included in the email. He wondered why those who oppose racism in their words are so quick to endorse it in their actions. With that, I present the latest defamatory statements by John Casper: [1.2] Does UCI own the software, lines, or servers that Mr. Kaufman used to try and obtain my IP address? If not, who does? I am very interested in what Mr. Kaufman planned to do once he unlawfully obtained my IP address. Is he still looking for it? A police report provides that kind of detail and I most assuredly want a copy of the police report for my files. Not still looking for it. You already provided it to me. [1.3] A related issue is that Mr. Kaufman accused me of harassing him. Did Mr. Kaufman follow UCI procedures...

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