Wall of Kiss
The socialist fraternal kiss consists of an embrace and a mutual kiss to cheeks or in rarer cases to the mouth. The origin of this ritual stems from the Eastern Orthodox Fraternal- or Easter Kiss, which through its entrenchment in the rites of the Orthodox Church carried a substantial strength of expression and so found use in daily life.
Communist political leaders frequently kissed as a matter of formality in those days. The photograph of the Kiss spread around the world, with the Paris Match magazine featuring it in a dramatic two-page spread. And when the Berlin Wall came down in , the Soviet artist Dmitri Vrubel decided to paint the iconic image on the east side of the Berlin Wall, along with paintings from other artists who descended upon the city in the heady days following the fall of the Wall.
Some Kremlinologists studying the USSR paid close attention to whether the fraternal embrace was exchanged between Communist leaders. The omission of the customary embrace is taken to indicate a lower level of relations between the two countries. Even with the normalization of relations in , the Chinese continued to omit the fraternal embrace when greeting Soviet leaders, even as they exchanged the fraternal embrace with leaders from other Communist countries.
And, being done, thus Wall away doth go. What is curious is that the wall has a role in the play.
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Incidentally, the wall, in this case, is there as the obstacle between the lover and the loved, so that, finally, it occupies precisely the place of language. This is also why language is generally the site of the transference within the clinic.
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It is within and through language, through speech — that is, through the signifier — that love becomes something that one has; such that it is given to somebody who through-out it all, and especially as a veil upon the profound anxiety of death, wants it. The lover often gives what he thinks he has signifiers to she who actually wants one objet petit a. View all posts by Saint Schmidt.
But we should be very careful here.