Gossip politics

My provocation today comes from thinking about the idea of how politics has now become gossip or rather that gossip has become politicised. If you want to make it in politics you’ve got to be skilful with gossip. Policy now has the form of casual or unconstrained reports about other people(s), typically involving details which are not confirmed as true.

And response to gossip has the character of a dramatisation “Oh, no, really? Can (s)he really have said that?”

Gossip political functions as an economy of pleasure. Pleasure because one person or a group of people can be used to generate a sense of community, of belonging because the enemy or enemies have been identified and we can create bonds formed at the personal expense of other people.

In psychoanalysis most of the work involves gossip. It’s called empty speech, but the empty speech is taken very seriously, as seriously as the full speech which is when the unconscious gets involved, because it is in the empty speech that we find the full speech. But to access the full speech requires a different kind of relationship to language, to the idea of truth and the idea that we function in different registers.

The thing about the gossip political is not that it’s become a part of our lives, but that we are still in denial as to how it really is here. We are aware enough to be able to point the finger at it but we are not aware to the extent that gossip political is using us, how it enunciates who we are.

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