Agamben, Giorgio. ‘Desiring’ Profanations translated by Jeff Fort (New York: Zone Books, 2010) 53-54


We are unable to put our desires in language because we have imagined them. In reality the crypt contains only images, like a picture book for children who do not yet know how to read, like the Imagerie l’Epinal of an illiterate people. The body of desires is an image. And what is unavowable in desire is the image we have made of it for ourselves.

To communicate one’s desires to someone without images is brutal. To communicate one’s images without one’s desires is tedious (like recounting one’s dreams or one’s travels). But both are easy to do. To communicate the imagined desires and the desired images, on the other hand, is a more difficult task.


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