DL_Adolescence today: the economy of jouissance (5/5)

The models that were effective in limiting young people's jouissance have lost their symbolic power. Young people are disoriented by a hyper-modern world where immediate satisfaction is what matters, and there are no figures of authority to set limits on their enjoyment. They suffer from a dual crisis: one related to their desired position and the situation of having to solve the puzzles of their desire according to the current discourse that regulates satisfaction.

The discourse of today is marked by its inconsistency and lack of ideals, as it is now statistics that govern jouissance, and enjoyment is not subject to numerical measures. With no filters other than those of an acephalous evaluation to keep it in check, young people are driven towards immediate gratification that erupts into their bodies. Objects that fill and obscure the void within them emerge before young people, detached from any ideals. Without lack, desire weakens, and in the face of this imperative of immediate satisfaction and a market that offers endless possibilities, there is little room for questioning.

The obstructed and unfulfilled adolescent enters into the logic of the market with an added feature: adolescence is constituted as an object of consumption in itself. It is the young people who provoke the admiration of adults, which makes youth the ideal to reflect upon. Crossing the threshold of these unstoppable economies of pleasure, questioning the social imperative of "anything is possible" to discover what moves oneself and moves with others would perhaps be another ideal, an ideal that in any case does not try to pigeonhole adolescents into predetermined communities of enjoyment based on their symptomatic avatars (addictions, anorexia, bulimia, etc.), but rather to accompany them in the particular production of the meaning of their existence


Helena Mateo Valldeperes