News – August 2022
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Publishers Verso are offering 40% off a selection of psychoanalytic books until the end of September to mark the start of the new academic year. As well as classics from Freud and Lacan, there are lesser-known titles such as the excellent and often very funny The Weary Sons of Freud by Catherine Clément, and Freud: Theory of the Unconscious. by frequenter of Lacan’s early Seminars Octave Mannoni.
Among the latest book releases, Lacan’s Cruelty: Perversion beyond Philosophy, Culture and Clinic, edited by Meera Lee, was published at the end of August by Palgrave as part of the Palgrave Lacan Series. Without reducing the category of perversion to cultural representations, historical discourse or clinical diagnosis, the contributors to this volume attempt to “de-sexualise” and “de-mystify” the understanding of perversion from the perspective of cruelty by bringing Lacanian psychoanalytic concepts into dialogue with clinical praxis, philosophy and literature.
Uneasy Listening: Notes on Hearing and Being Heard by psychoanalyst and writer Anouchka Grose and violin maker Robert Brewer Young was released over the summer. A meditation on listening by two very different kinds of professional listener, they discuss the differences, similarities, and resonances between their practices and ask: what makes a good listener?
Massimo Recalcati’s Cain’s Act has just been published by Europa Press. Recalcati cites the biblical character’s murder of his brother Abel as the point at which “the story of humankind begins”. This story, he goes on to argue, is one in which the inability to tolerate a lack generates a hatred for what he calls the ‘Law of the Word’ which tethers the subject to the Other, and against which violence is an attempt to escape. As he writes in the book’s opening pages, “We know that love of thy neighbor is the final and most fundamental word arrived at by biblical logos. But it is not the first word. It comes after Cain’s act.”
Turning to events, Darian Leader will present ‘What is sex?’ on September 17th at 10am EST or 3pm UK, the first of three online pre-conference talks in the weeks prior to the in-person Lacan: Clinic & Culture conference in October. This talk will explore questions of sexual practice, and how these are shaped by childhood interests and anxieties. After the early work of second wave feminist thought challenged many popular psychoanalytic dogmas, have we made much progress today in thinking about sexuality, apart from endlessly repeating a few clichés and fetishising some loopy mathemes? This will be followed by ‘Resistance and Ambivalence: On Reading, Feminisms, Sex, and Race’, a talk by Linette Park on September 24, 2022 at 11:00am EST or 4:00pm (UK). And finally, Adrian Johnston will present ‘Feeling the Misrepresentation of Feeling: Lacan and Unconscious Affect’ on Oct 1st at 1:00pm EST (11am MST) (6:00pm UK). Register for these talks – and separately for the conference itself – through the link at the bottom of this page.
The Guild of Psychotherapists has just announced the first in a series of online events on the theme ‘Psychoanalysis at the Margins’. Exploring the experiences of marginalised groups, practices that have traditionally been thought of as marginal to psychoanalysis, and the common links between them the series begins on 5th November with Care and Clinics for All: Welcoming Marginalized People to Psychoanalytic Treatment. It features Elizabeth Danto, author of Freud’s Free Clinics – the Gradiva Award and the Goethe Prize-winning study of psychoanalysis and social justice during the interwar years – and clinicians Chris Vanderwees and Kristen Hennessy, whose Psychoanalysis, Politics, Oppression and Resistance: Lacanian Perspectives was released earlier this year. Vanderwees and Hennessy will discuss their experiences working with the homeless and children in care respectively. Sign up via Eventbrite for what promises to be a very stimulating discussion on an important topic.
Gabriel Tupinambá will be giving a seminar for Lacan in Scotland on Thursday 29th September titled A History of the Other: Sex, Kinship and the Conditions of Psychoanalysis. Why did psychoanalysis emerge when it did – and what is its debt to these historical conditions? In this presentation, Gabriel Tupinambá will propose a speculative hypothesis which includes psychoanalysis in the history of the transformations of the logic of affinity and kinship under the consolidation of capitalist modernity. The event is free and open to all.
The NWRPA’s autumn events schedule includes two clinically orientated Zoom talks by Lacanians, both of which focus on the subject of time. On Mon 10th October Dr Astrid Gessert will be speaking on ‘Using Time as a Clinical Intervention’, and on Mon 14th November Leslie Chapman will speak about ‘The Two Times of Trauma: Touching the Real’. Both events are free to members and £7.50 to non-members. You can become a member of the NWRPA for as little as £30 a year.
On YouTube, check out a new series on the channel Que Vuoi? reading Lacan’s Seminar I. The pair go chapter-by-chapter through the Seminar alongside Lacanian theorists such as Todd McGowan and Derek Hook.
Are Dating Apps Lacanian? from Sublation Media features Matthew Flisfeder whose latest book, Algorithmic Desire: Toward a New Structuralist Theory of Social Media, explores the transformation of the subject through contemporary digital culture. A discussion of social media, combining Marxism and psychoanalysis, it also presents a critique of the work of political theorist Jodi Dean and her notion of communicative capitalism.
Among podcasts, New Books in Psychoanalysis from the New Books Networks has released a flurry of interviews with authors of great new works that have been released over the past few months. Among them, Jordan Osserman’s discussion of his book Circumcision on the Couch The Cultural, Psychological, and Gendered Dimensions of the World’s Oldest Surgery, Jamieson Webster’s interview about her Disorganisation and Sex, and Carl Waitz and Theresa Clement Tisdale discussing their Lacanian Psychoanalysis and Eastern Orthodox Christian Anthropology in Dialogue.
Lastly, in Australia The Sydney Lacan Study and Reading Network has been launched as a new not-for-profit network with its core interest in the study of Lacan’s principle theories and their application to broader areas beyond psychoanalysis, including the examination and analysis of vast fields in literature, art, drama, philosophy, and aesthetics. Monthly seminars, online classes, and books and art reviews are among its activities.
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