Knowledge as Desire: An Essay on Freud and Piaget - Vol. 10

By Hans G. Furth | Go to book overview

1.
Symbols: Where Freud and Piaget Meet

"DESIRE EXISTS ONLY when the object exists; the object exists only when desire exists; desire and object are a pair of twins, neither of which can come into the world the least moment before the other."

This cry of Kierkegaard, taken up by modern existential philosophy, strikes a deep chord in the heart of many contemporaries. Yet to these same people, objects of knowledge and of desire are anything but two sides of the same coin. Emotion and intellect are generally seen as separate psychological compartments, both in our personal lives and in our social institutions. In fact, they are frequently considered as antagonistic forces, working against each other. "Alienation" is a favorite description of the existential situation of modern people. Whatever contributes to the composite picture of this state of not being at-one, surely one of its more basic ingredients is that split between desire and knowledge.

What then shall we make of Kierkegaard's comment What is the source of its attraction? Is it but an idle dream of an unattainable psychological unity, itself generated by unappeased

-1-

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Knowledge as Desire: An Essay on Freud and Piaget - Vol. 10
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Knowledge As Desire - AN ESSAY ON FREUD AND PIAGET *
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • TO THE READER ix
  • 1 - Symbols: Where Freud and Piaget Meet 1
  • 2 - The Formation of the Symbolic World 15
  • 3 - The Formation of the Unconscious World 41
  • 4 - Libido Bound Through Symbols 65
  • Interlude: Preliminary Summary 93
  • 5 - Symbols: The Key to Humanization 101
  • 6 - Symbols, Biology, and Logical Necessity 121
  • 7 - Logic and Desire 153
  • References 173
  • Index 177
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