April saw the ninth Congress of the World Association of Psychoanalysis gather in Paris to explore the theme ‘A Real for the 21st Century’. Helpfully, Radio Lacan has recordings of some of the sessions for those who were not able to attend. You can also order the accompanying edition of the journal Scilicet on the theme of the Congress from the ECF here. Among the highlights, Bernard Seynhaeve, director of Le Courtil institute in Belgium which works with youngsters from 6 to 20, discussed Mariana Otero’s film about the institute, À Ciel Ouvert, which has now attracted a total audience of 40,000, and which many Lacanians view as a rebuttal to Sophie Robert’s now banned 2012 film Le Mur. A video of the two in discussion ahead of the Congress can be found on YouTube here. For his part, Jacques-Alain Miller’s remarks focused on what comes ‘after’ the Lacanian categories of the symbolic, the imaginary and the real, to which he proposed: the body. After remarking on how the mysterious union between speech and the body, in the register of the real, was where Lacan’s final work was taking him, Miller proposed (as per tradition) the theme for the next Congress of the WAP in Rio in 2016: ‘The Unconscious and the Speaking Body’. Thanks in particular to ACF-CAPA in France for their live tweets during the Congress.

On the subject of the next WAP Congress, Colette Soler’s paper in volume 6 of JCFAR, the Journal of The Centre for Freudian Analysis and Research – published all the way back 1995 – shows that this is a theme that Lacanians have been thinking about for a long time, and that this is not the first time it has been explored from the angle of changes in the symbolic order. To quote from Soler’s paper:

“… one might well ask, what does psychoanalysis do with the body? It has become a very fashionable question, though it is not really psychoanalysis that has made it so. It has become fashionable through the proliferation of what are known as physical therapies [body techniques]. We could draw up a list of them. It is quite clear that I probably only know of a quarter of these
kind of therapies. In any case, think of yoga, of all the various forms of gymnastics, of the primal scream, and all the others; the techniques are multiplying.
… Perhaps it could be said that psychoanalysis is in a certain sense a physical
therapy; you will see what I mean by this. It’s an affirmation that needs to be justified.
Psychoanalysis is a physical therapy”
(read in full here.)

Soler will be visiting London in May at the invite of the Centre for Freudian Analysis and Research. She will be speaking at the Freud Museum on Saturday 10th May to mark the publication of one of her most well-known books on Lacan into English. Lacan: The Unconscious Reinvented is scheduled to be released in June in both the US and UK. The schedule for the event is on CFAR’s site. CFAR has also published its timetable of public events for the summer term 2014, culminating in its Annual Conference on 12th July on Sexuality: Fantasy, Discourse and Practice.

Elisabeth Roudinesco, Lacan’s biographer and historian of psychoanalysis, was herself at the Freud Museum in London in April to talk about her new book, Lacan: In Spite of Everything. Audio of her talk can now be found amongst the Freud Museum’s podcasts.

Roudinesco also has two more interesting publications on the horizon. She is due to publish a new biography of Freud in September in French. Before then, however, an English translation of her book co-authored with Alain Badiou, Jacques Lacan, Past and Present: A Dialogue is due to be published in early May.

After a number of delays, a new translation of Lacan’s Seminar X on Anxiety, edited by Jacques-Alain Miller, was published in the US in April. UK audiences will have to wait until 30th May (date correct at time of writing) or order from the US. Thanks to Adrian Price, who has done many other great translations of Lacan’s work (and those of fellow Lacanians), for the updates in April ahead of the publication.

A great programme of distinguished Lacanian speakers has been assembled for the Psychoanalysis on Ice conference due to be held in Reykjavik, Iceland 9th-12th October. The full programme – a who’s who of the psychoanalytic world – can be found on the event’s site here. Many thanks to Michael Dow for the heads up about this conference.

Jacques Siboni’s lecture at the GIFRIC in San Francisco on Lacan’s four discourses and the ethics of psychoanalysis is now available on YouTube here. Siboni also participated in an interview with John Gasperoni for Radio Valencia in San Francisco in March where they discussed the situation of psychoanalysis in the US in greater detail. Audio can be found here.

Bruno de Florence’s talk on Music and Totemism from March is now available in five parts on his site. He explores the topics with the use of Freudian and Lacanian ideas, attempting to situate the origins, uses, roles and functions of music as a semiotic system.

Affiliated Psychoanalytic Workgroups last month announced a study weekend coming up in July on Lacan’s Seminar IV, Object Relations. Taking place in Dublin, it is hosted by the Association for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy in Ireland (APPI). More details on APW’s site here.

Finally, French speakers may be interested in a series of radio documentaries on the Department of Psychoanalysis at University of Paris VIII which aired on France Culture last month. It features interviews with students and discussions of contemporary issues such as the role of the family which have aroused the attentions of Lacanian commentators, particularly in France. A list of the five-part series and links to listen again can be found here.

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