Jacques Lacan and the Freudian Practice of Psychoanalysis

Jacques Lacan and the Freudian Practice of Psychoanalysis

Jacques Lacan and the Freudian Practice of Psychoanalysis

Jacques Lacan and the Freudian Practice of Psychoanalysis

Synopsis

Jacques Lacan and the Freudian Practice of Psychoanalysis paints a completely new picture of the man and his ideas. The book suceeds in showing how ideas can become more accessible, and re-evaluates his significance within the field of psychodynamic psychotherapy.The book is structured thematically around five key issues: diagnosis, the analyst's position during the treatment, the management of transference, the formulation of interpretations, and the organisation of analytic training. For each of these issues, Lacan's entire work both published and unpublished material, has been taken into account and theoretical principles have been illustrated with clinical examples. The book also contains the first complete bibliography of Lacan's works in English.Clear, detailed, and wide ranging, Jacques Lacan and the Freudian Practice of Psychoanalysis will prove essential reading, not only for professionals and students within the fields of psychology and psychiatry , but for all those keen to discover a new Lacan.

Excerpt

At the close of this century, and nearly twenty years after his death, the figure of Jacques Lacan (1901-1981) continues to spark fierce controversy. Worshipped by a pleiad of followers in France, Spain, Italy and large parts of South America, Lacan has grown into a thoroughbred Western Zenmaster whose thought-provoking statements (‘Loving is to give what one does not have’, ‘Woman does not exist’, ‘There is no such thing as a sexual relationship’) provide many scholars with theoretical tools to dissect the insecurities of contemporary society and their pathological effects. People are often drawn to Lacan’s ideas because their enigmatic, provocative and uncompromising character is strangely appealing, and many students engage with Lacan’s works following the principle ‘I haven’t got a clue, but I like it’, simultaneously hoping to derive some universal wisdom from the opaque texts. From another angle, Lacan has been perceived by hardnosed scientists as the ultimate paragon of post-modern discourse. They see him alternatively as a highly unpalatable character who fluttered and flaunted without saying anything sensible, or a pretentious shrink suffering from the delusion that he was a genius. For who else but a madman would have the nerve to pontificate at the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology that human beings think with their feet (and sometimes with their forehead muscles), rather than with their brains?

The turmoil created by Lacan’s idiosyncratic viewpoints, not to mention his eccentric life-style, has often overshadowed the fact that he was essentially a practising psychoanalyst who devoted his entire career to the redemption and development of Freud’s clinical insights. Discussions surrounding Lacan’s works have mainly focused on the theoretical contents of his Ecrits, a massive collection of contrived texts stemming from seminars or conference presentations, and to a far lesser extent on his clinical contributions. Likewise, it has often been overlooked that Lacan’s Séminaire, which ran for almost thirty years, was initially

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