Vox-Exo: Horrors of a Voice

Adams, Tristam. 2019. Vox-Exo: Horrors of a Voice. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

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Abstract or Description

Vox-Exo: Horrors of a Voice reframes the Lacanian object a voice as a horrific register of alterity. The object gaze has received, as it does in Jacques Lacan’s work, more commentary than voice. Yet recently voice has garnered interest from multiple disciplines. The thesis intervenes in the Slovenian school’s commentary of the ‘object voice’ in terms of two questions: audition and corporeality. This intervention synthesizes psychoanalysis with recent theorizing of the horror of philosophy. In this intervention the object a voice is argued to resonate in lacunae – epistemological voids that evoke horror in the subject. Biological and evolutionary perspectives on voice, genre horror film and literature, music videos, close readings of Freudian and Lacanian case studies and textual analysis of ancient philosophy texts all contribute to an elucidation of the horrors of the object a voice: Vox-Exo. The impetus to address the body stems from a critical intervention in one of the most recent and cited works on voice in Lacan’s work; A Voice and Nothing More, by Mladen Dolar. Dolar’s trajectory to pursue the ‘object voice’ is to move from meaning, to aesthetics, to psychoanalysis. Such a move, the expedited turn to Lacanian psychoanalysis, is recalcitrant to tackling the body. This thesis responds to the book’s avidity to omit the body from the question of voice. Vox-Exo: Horrors of a Voice, contra the Slovenian School’s credo, rearticulates the object a voice in terms of corporeality and audition. The significance the a, that designates other, autre, stated in Lacan’s works, and numerous commentaries such as Jacques-Alain Miller’s and Stijn Vanheule’s, is impressed. With a sustained consideration of corporeality and audition, the unknowability and alterity of a is demonstrated to be a locus of horror. Object a voice is argued to resonate in lacunae, evoking legion, indefinite, horror – a horror.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

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Voice, Horror, Lacan, Dolar, Jackson, Vocalization, Vocalities, Contagion, INMI, Plato, Aristotle, Freud, Body, Corporeal, Alterity, Trauma, Song, Speech, Violence, Music, Music Video, Popular Music, Evolution, Sirens, Slime, Psychoanalysis, Object Voice, Object a, Flutes, Parasites

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Visual Cultures



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Date Deposited:

04 Jun 2021 15:44

Last Modified:

07 Sep 2022 17:18



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