News – July 2020
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August will finally see the release of the English translation of Lacan’s Seminar IV, The Object Relation, edited by Jacques-Alain Miller and published by Polity. Adrian Price is once again the translator. This is a pivotal Seminar in the development of Lacan’s re-reading of Freud, presenting his thinking of that time on the Oedipus complex, phobia, myth and – of course – the burgeoning object relations school. This translation is based on the 1998 publication under Miller’s editorship, and will certainly be welcome as its English publication has been long due. UK readers however will need to wait until January 2021 for release (or it can be ordered from the US via the link above). Although there are many alternative English translations of Seminar IV already out there, the ongoing translation by the Earl’s Court Collective deserves special mention for being the most recent and is based on the transcript of the original stenographs. The first 8 sessions of the Seminar are available free online here.
Leon S. Brenner’s The Autistic Subject: On the Threshold of Language has been announced for release at the end of October as part of the Palgrave Lacan Series. Describing autism as a “singular mode of being fundamentally linked to one’s identity and basic practices of existence”, Brenner’s book will present a model of autistic subjectivity which represents an alternative to its treatment as a mental or physical disorder. Offering a synthesis of contemporary psychoanalytic thinking on autism from the work of analysts including Jean-Claude Maleval, Eric Laurent, and Rosine and Robert Lefort – most of which are as yet untranslated into English – Brenner makes the case for autism as a singular subjective structure on what he labels an “autistic linguistic spectrum”.
Alireza Taheri’s Hegelian-Lacanian Variations on Late Modernity: Spectre of Madness: Spectre of Madness has been announced for publication in late December by Routledge. Taheri develops the a theoretical apparatus based on Hegelian speculative reason and Lacanian psychoanalysis, in opposition to the trend towards post-secular ‘spirituality’ marked by the growing popularity of New Ageism and anti-philosophical sentiments which characterise our times. In particular, he uses Hegel’s term ‘diremption’ to argue that identities-in-difference create contradictions in the subject’s position and deadlocks in understanding our contemporary predicament. Taheri’s work has always been exciting, accessible, and original. It is no surprise that it has received such positive reviews from the likes of Zizek, Adrian Johnston, and Sergio Benvenuto in advance of its publication. It is available to pre-order now.
Also due out at the end of the year is Lacanian Perspectives on Blade Runner 2049, a collection of commentaries, edited by Calum Neill, on Denis Villeneuve’s 2017 movie. Contributors explore philosophical and psychoanalytic questions that the film provokes, inspiring consideration of issues around ideology, politics, and spectatorship.
Looking further ahead, newly-announced for release in April 2021 is Davide Tarizzo’s Political Grammars: The Unconscious Foundations of Modern Democracy, which looks at the issue of nations and nationalism using Lacanian psychoanalytic theory. Tarizzo is an Italian philosopher and has written several books on Lacanian psychoanalysis in his native language. He is also the translator of works by Badiou, Deleuze, and Arendt into Italian.
Another recent work which might be of interest to Lacanians is Rudolf Bernet’s Force, Drive, Desire: A Philosophy of Psychoanalysis, published by Northwestern University Press earlier this year. In the same tradition as Paul Ricoeur’s classic Freud and Philosophy, Bernet seeks to ground psychoanalysis on a philosophical foundation with a focus on the drives. The book attempts to locate Freud and Lacan’s worth among those of Aristotle, Leibniz, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Husserl, and Heidegger, among others. It is wide-ranging and ambitious in its scope, encompassing a discussion of art, history, and metaphysics across its 400 pages. This translation from the French comes courtesy of Sarah Allen.
Among new journals, the latest edition of Psychoanalytical Notebooks from the London Society of the NLS was released last month. Titled Purloined Letters, it brings together three texts by Sophie Marret-Maleval, director of the Department of Psychoanalysis at the University of Paris VIII. One of these texts is a close reading of Lacan’s text Litauraterre, which opens Lacan’s Autres Écrits in French.
The Fall 2020 edition of Lacanian Ink (number 55, on ‘Feminine Jouissance’) will be released shortly, featuring translations of four papers by Jacques-Alain Miller among others. A preview is available by clicking on each of the article titles from the link above.
From the World Association of Psychoanalysis comes a series of papers by its members under the title ‘Dream, Desire, Awakening’, exploring the relationship between these three terms in analytic theory and practice. This publication follows that of the most recent edition of Scilicet which appeared in May thanks to the NLS, and which itself is preparatory to the XII Congress of the WAP, which will now take place 14th-18th December in Buenos Aires.
Among events, the NWRPA in the UK will be hosting an online study group series with Dr Mark Fisher, over four monthly meetings from September to December 2020, on the subject of ‘Transference and Love’. All will take place via Zoom.
The Freud Museum London has a full programme of online events over the next month. On 12th August, Prof Dany Nobus will mark the centenary of Freud’s turning-point text, ‘Beyond the Pleasure Principle’ with a talk entitled Narcissism and the Pleasures of Extinction. As provocative and divisive in its day as it is now, Nobus will reflect on the legacy of Freud’s landmark paper and what perspectives it can offer us on the current world circumstances. Secondly, from 29th-31st August, Mary Wild will continue her Projections series at the Museum with a focus on the documentary genre and its presentations of psychology. Across three sessions covering identity, truth, and narrative, she will argue for how documentaries, like the psychoanalytic method, confront the challenge of portraying subjectivity authentically, and rely on a readiness to let go of binding representations of selfhood and what we believe to be true. Finally, September will start with Dr Keith Barrett’s day course on Philosophy, Psychoanalysis and Gender, tracing the development of thinking in this area over the approximately hundred years from Freud, Simone de Beauvoir, and Judith Butler.
Lacanian Compass in New York has announced its 2020-2021 Online Program with a focus on Lacan’s Seminar X, Anxiety, and the supplemental texts by Freud, Miller, Laurent and others. The year will start on 9th September and the full programme is available via the link above.
The Irish Circle of the Lacanian Orientation (NLS) will also be announcing its full programme in the coming days. For now, several dates for the diary are available on its site. The Opening Event on 26th September will be hosted by Veronique Voruz, and throughout October, November, and December there will be an introductory teaching seminar on ‘True Psychoanalysis, and False’. Other dates of note in collaboration with the wider organisation of the NLS will be an Inter-Cartel Day scheduled for 5th December, and a Special Day on the Pass and the Formation of the Psychoanalyst on 16th January.
The Lacan Circle of Australia will commence its second semester with a series studying the crucial moments in Lacan’s teaching through the work of Miller. Convened and presented by Russell Grigg, ‘The Lacanian Orientation of Jacques-Alain Miller’ will begin on 22nd August and run till 21st Nov across 12 Saturday sessions. It will be broadcast live over Zoom with downloadable recordings will be distributed to those enrolled afterwards.
The Lacanian School of Psychoanalysis in San Francisco is celebrating its 30th year and has announced its course running 26th-28th February 2021 on ‘The Logic and Experience of the Well-Said in Psychoanalysis: Analytic Ethics in the Lacanian School’.
The Freud Lacan Institute (FLi) in Ireland has announced a 6-week course exploring the fundamental themes of psychoanalysis, taking place over Zoom. No prior knowledge is assumed and the seminars will consist of an interactive combination of lectures and facilitated discussions. Eve Watson, Marie Walshe, Kevin Murphy, Harriet Parsons, Pauline Twomey, and Maryrose Kiernan will tutor the seminars, which start on 29th August.
More excellent content from the Rendering Unconscious podcast over the last month, thanks to host by Dr Vanessa Sinclair. Among the latest discussions, Carlos Padrón discusses clinical work, race, class, and the unconscious; Steven Reisner talks about madness as the site where psychoanalysis and capitalism collide; and Prof Kevin Vokan discusses psychoanalysis in relation to music, education and the dream-work.
The London Society of the NLS last month launched its YouTube channel. Happily, many of the commentaries on the webinar series reading Seminar XVII that had been running since lockdown in Europe are now available, and more content is promised over time. Hit Subscribe to see them as they are released.
Lastly, PEP-Web has lifted its paywall for a month to make the excellent 2016 documentary Psychoanalysis in El Barrio available for free. Watch it while you can. The documentary follows the experience of Latino psychoanalysts in the United States as they bring psychoanalysis to Latino communities. It challenges the cultural and economic circumstances of Latinos in the US and looks at how to bring psychoanalytically informed therapy to them. Developed as a result of a series of conferences at IPTAR and the New School in 2014, it also later spurred a book (available here).
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