For Lacan, then, morality lies beyond the good, useful, virtuous and
pleasurable, in the rigorously lawful domain of desire. Those altruists who
earnestly seek to be of service to others, fulfi lling their needs and enhancing
their well-being, do so only because the true form of enjoyment which is
jouissance – a pleasure which is ‘good for nothing’ – has lamentably failed
them. The utilitarian or political reformer is he who is incapable of enjoyment
without an end in view. Those who prate of the good, so ethicists of
the Real suspect, suppose in implicitly autocratic style that they know just
what good others need; whereas the love of the analyst for his or her patient
never falls prey to such presuppositions.


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