Enslavement and Enownment


I see two major issues with the linked post on enslavement:

  1. Everything mentioned is in terms of the slave’s “needs”. However you could turn things around and make all the same statements in terms of the Master’s “needs”.
  2. The point is apparently solely so that the slave can “be all she can be”. Aside from sounding like an old recruitment commercial, precisely what’s in it for the Master?

It’s true that a slave needs a certain “safe” zone in order to fully express themselves as such. In large part so does a Master, in order to express themselves as such. For both to occur there has to be an event, which I term “Enowning” or “event of appropriation”, both borrowed from two different English translations of Heidegger’s term “Ereignis”, which can also be translated as “Mastery”. In the case of an M/s relationship, “Enowning” has two simultaneous moments to the event, that of enslavement and that of enownment – the slave’s slavery is enabled as the Master’s ownership of the slave is enabled in the event of Enowning. The event is not something that occurs and then is over, but something from within which each remains what they have become, and becomes it more deeply.

As far as being all they can be, a significant part of being enslaved is precisely being what the Master/Owner wants her to be, not what she wants to be. A significant part of being enowned is that you *can* master the slave to be what you want them to be, in fact the mastery of the Master consists precisely in being able to accomplish this. The event of appropriation appropriates the slave into the malleability of being enslaved, and appropriates the Master into the ability to own and enslave.

The focus on a slave’s “needs” reminds me of an article I read recently, where the article writer said “obviously this woman is in close touch with all of her needs”, i.e. she’s a selfish bitch. That seems to me to be entirely the wrong approach for a slave in an M/s dynamic, and catering to it seems entirely the wrong approach for a Master.

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