Saturday, January 31, 2004

Trust and Transference

When John talks about the Wizard of Oz, I think this relates to the way we project imaginary stuff onto our so-called leaders (or therapists). Freud called this "transference".

Interestingly there is a growing literature on another notion of transference in relation to online trust. This seems to be something to do with transitive trust - we imagine we can trust B because we imagine we can trust A.

Authority trust breaks down if the authority is imaginary (based on transference) rather than real. Network trust breaks down if the network is imaginary. And so on.

Lacanians define transference in terms of knowledge. The analyst is the one "supposed to know". In public life, we are surrounded by people who are "supposed to know". Lord Hutton is supposed to know the "truth" about the death of Dr Kelly.

To my mind, this is more problematic than mere ownership.