Bracha’s Eurydice

Judith Butler photographed by Bracha Ettinger in Berlin, IPA Conference, 2007

“Eurydice is, as we know, already lost, already gone, already dead, and yet, at the moment in which our gaze apprehends her, she is there, there for the instant in which she is there. And the gaze by which she is apprehended is the gaze through which she is banished. Our gaze pushes her back to death, since we are prohibited from looking, and we know that by looking, we will lose her. And we will not lose her for the first time, but we will lose her again, and it will be by virtue of our own gaze that she will be lost to us, and that she will, as a result, be apprehensible only as loss.

So it is not just that she is lost, and we discover her again to be lost, but that in the very act of seeing, we lose.” 

(Judith Butler 2004: Bracha’s Eurydice)

Bracha Ettinger, Water-Dream Artistbook (Notebook, 25×25 cm), 2011