News – June 2013
The inaugural edition of a new journal, Culture/Clinic, published by University of Minnesota Press and edited by Maire Jaanus and Jacques Alain Miller, is now available. As mentioned in last month’s News update, the release of the new journal was timed to coincide with the Miami Symposium which also took place in June (more on which below). The first edition of Culture/Clinic is of special interest because it contains the first English translations of three new interventions by Lacan, the first entitled ‘There are Four Discourses’ (although, as most Lacanians know, Lacan adds a fifth discourse, the capitalist’s discourse, in the Milan seminar of 1972!); the second a lecture on the body given at Yale University; and the third a lecture on the Symptom given at Columbia. Full details of the inaugural edition and a link to buy can be found here.
Speaking of new translations of Lacan’s work into English, June brought the happy news that two more are on their way. ‘The Triumph of Religion’ and three lectures ‘On the Names-of-the-Father’ are both set to be released on 30th August.
The Miami Symposium itself, with the title ‘What Lacan Knew About Women’, took place at the beginning of the month. A report on the congress can be found on the NLS site here. It was a truly international conference, with attendees from 19 countries, as the pie chart showing the mix of delegates makes clear. Unsurprisingly contributions focussed on contemporary femininity, specifically in the new reality of the post-Oedipal clinic.
The Vancouver LaConference took place in Canada at the start of June. Continuing the theme that seems omnipresent in Lacanian circles at the moment, at least since the AMP’s 2012 Congress, its topic was ‘The Symbolic Order in the 21st Century’. Papers from the conference are due to be added to the site in the near future. In the meantime, check out an excellent paper from Theo Reeves-Evison presented at the conference – After Transgression: Ethics Under a Different Master.
On 10th June here in London Dr Allen Frances, chair of the taskforce that put together the DSM-IV in the 1990s and now harsh critic of the DSM-V, delivered the 2013 Freud Memorial Lecture. Frances gave an appraisal of how well Freud’s work had stood the test of time, with remarks that many Freud scholars and Lacanians would likely take issue with. However, while we wait for the Freud Museum to release the podcast of the address, you can review the slides from Dr Frances’ presentation here.
Nearby, Kings College London hosted a conference to debate the merits of the newly-published DSM-V on 4th and 5th June. Lacanians Veronique Voruz and Janet Hanley were present and have written up a short report on the conference which is published on the Alliance for Counselling and Psychotherapy’s site here.
Thanks to the International Psychoanalytic University of Berlin and with the assistance of Anthony Allaire, the complete works of Freud in their original German editions have now been digitalised and can be found at FreudLibrary.net. There are a few gaps here and there but the collection is far more comprehensive than the Standard Edition, and includes Freud’s pre-psychoanalytic work such as the translations of John Stuart Mill and early medical monographs, correspondence, and shorter articles for the Internationale Zeitschrift. It is an excellent research tool for all Lacanians.
The Affiliated Psychoanalytic Workgroups Eleventh Annual Conference has been announced to take place in Boston, Mass. on the 11-13 of October. It’s topic is ‘On the Imaginary’ with keynote talks by Bruce Fink, Bill Richardson and Marco Antonio Courtinho Jorge. Lacan’s remarks on the imaginary register are often assumed to be clustered together in his early work. There is a somewhat received notion that the attention he paid to this topic waned through the 1950s and ‘60s as a result of his development of the symbolic, and further in the 1970s with the focus on the real. Clearly this is a facile reading of Lacan’s work and it is great to see a conference devoted to the status of the imaginary itself. Full details and addresses to submit papers can be found on the Lacan Toronto cartel’s site here, and you can register for the conference via this link.
On 15th and 16th June the Russian affiliate of the New Lacanian School hosted a Seminar of the Freudian Field in Saint-Petersburg with Lacanian analyst Sonia Chiriaco. The Seminar took as its title ‘From the symptom to the sinthome’ and as such fits nicely into the context of current discussion within the Lacanian world about the failure of old analytic methods in the face of contemporary symptoms that are no longer ciphered meanings waiting to be interpreted. The seminar’s bold pronouncement, a short precis of which can be found here, was that “The analyst of today aims at the sinthome, namely, the singular mode of jouissance by each and everyone”, rather than the symptom as such.
THERIP, The Higher Education Network for Research and Information in Psychoanalysis, is hosting a conference on 26th and 27th July in London entitled ‘The Fragmented World of Psychoanalysis: Is Dialogue Possible?’. There is currently a special offer of £45 for students and trainees who would like to attend. See THERIP’s site for more details.
Readers of this site may remember the controversy over the release of the film Le Mur about a year ago, which was critical of psychoanalytic interpretations of autism (see here for the background). In June, the Lacanian response, a documentary called Autres Voix was played in special screenings throughout France, and in Paris on 22nd June. The English premiere of ‘Other Voices’, to give it its English title, is scheduled for September in Dublin, thanks to the Irish Circle of the Lacanian Orientation. In the meantime you can read more about the film and watch its Spanish trailer with French subtitles here.
Finally, French speakers will be pleased to find an index of Jacques-Alain Miller’s course L’orientation lacanienne, much like Kruzen’s majesterial index of Lacan’s Seminar has been put together by Loic Toubel. Check it out on his site here, and if you are looking for an archive of Miller’s course, which has been going since 1973 and is shortly to resume again, you can find that here.