News – November 2022
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Beginning with new books, Patricia Gherovici and Manya Steinkoler are editors of a new collection, Psychoanalysis, Gender, and Sexualities: From Feminism to Trans* which was published by Routledge in the past month. Leading theorists and clinicians discuss sexual difference at the intersection of psychoanalysis, feminism and transgender discourses from perspectives informed by Freud, Lacan, Kristeva and Laplanche among others. A good introductory chapter sums up the historical and contemporary debates and situates the various thinkers within them.
Asexuality and Freudian-Lacanian Psychoanalysis: Towards a Theory of an Enigma by Kevin Murphy has just been published by Routledge. Noting that asexuality has received virtually no research attention in psychoanalysis, Murphy puts forward the thesis that it is “a libidinally founded desire for no sexual desire.” The absence of “Other-directed sexual desire”, as Murphy sees it, contradicts current understandings of sexuality which privilege sexual attraction and eroticism as “benchmarks for experiencing sexual desire.”
Vanessa Sinclair edits the new collection Psychoanalytic Perspectives on the Films of Ingmar Bergman: From Freud to Lacan and Beyond which has also just been published by Routledge. It presents a contemporary Freudian-Lacanian assessment of the works of the classic Swedish director. Revisiting films such as Persona, The Seventh Seal and The Silence, Sinclair assembles an international cast of analysts and scholars to bring together this collection of papers considering the way that Bergman’s films confront sexuality, neurosis, war, death and taboo.
Psychoanalysis and the New Rhetoric: Freud, Burke, Lacan and Philosophy’s Other Scenes by Daniel Adleman and Chris Vanderwees will be published by Routledge later this month. This is an innovative work that places the fields of psychoanalysis and rhetoric in dynamic resonance with one another. The book operates according to a compelling interdisciplinary conceit: Adleman provocatively explores the psychoanalytic aspects of rhetoric and Vanderwees probes the rhetorical dimensions of psychoanalytic practice. This thoroughly researched text takes a closer look at the “missed encounter” between rhetoric and psychoanalysis. The first section of the book explores the massive, but underappreciated, influence of Freudian psychoanalysis on Kenneth Burke’s “new rhetoric.” The book’s second section undertakes sustained investigations into the rhetorical dimensions of psychoanalytic concepts such as transference, free association, and listening. Psychoanalysis and the New Rhetoric then culminates in a more comprehensive discussion of Lacanian psychoanalysis in the context of Kenneth Burke’s new rhetoric. The book therefore serves as an invaluable aperture to the fields of psychoanalysis and rhetoric, including their much overlooked disciplinary entanglement. Order from the publishers Routledge with a 20% discount – enter the code FLA22 at the checkout – or via Amazon.
Among the journals, issue 13 of The Lacanian Review, the journal of the New Lacanian School and the World Association of Psychoanalysis, is now out. The theme of ‘
The Woman’ harkens back to the ‘Great International Online Conversation’ which took place earlier this year under the auspices of the WAP. In this issue of The Lacanian Review is a translation of a little-known Lacan paper ‘Homage to Marguerite Duras, for the Ravishment of Lol V Stein’, and Miller’s ‘Of Women and Semblants.’ Papers by other prominent Lacanians of the WAP and NLS are also included.
Turning to upcoming events, on Sat 14th January the Guild of Psychotherapists will be hosting the second in its Psychoanalysis at the Margins series via Zoom. ‘A Freudian Trip? Psychoanalysis and Psychedelic Experience’ features speakers Richard Boothby, Dr Roberta Murphy, and Timmy Davis. Boothby’s recent book, Blown Away – a memoir of his analysis following his son’s suicide – is one of the stand-out books of this past year and recounts Boothby’s experience using psilocybin concurrently with his analysis. Tickets to this highly recommended event are available from Eventbrite.
Dr Bret Fimiani will be speaking about his book ‘Psychosis and Extreme States: An Ethic for Treatment’ with Palgrave Lacan series editor Calum Neil at the Freud Museum London on 1st February. The book offers a new framework for practitioners and scholars to understand psychosis and to develop treatments that are effective for the experience of psychosis. The discussion will cover themes such as: listening to delusion as itself a form of knowledge, the treatment of delusion and voices through the work of the dream, the reversal of transference in the field of psychosis, the ‘ethics’ of the analyst and analysand, and the possibilities (hope) for the subject of psychosis to achieve a new freedom from the most distressing aspects of psychotic experiences.
The London Workshop of the Freudian Field has announced its programme for 2022-2023 on the topic of Delusion. Setting out from its psychiatric definition, the series will study different forms of delusion, each one illustrated with a clinical case. The course is under the direction of Jacques-Alain Miller and begins on 17th December. It takes place in-person in London and on Zoom.
The Lacan Circle of Australia has announced a 10-part seminar series on Saturdays from 25th February on The Lacanian Orientation of Jacques-Alain Miller (II): How Analyses End, presented by Russell Grigg. Following the publication earlier this year of a collection of Miller’s work under this same title (albeit in French), this is a seminar on a crucial question for psychoanalysis, which is how analyses end; how they end in practice as well as in theory. The focus will be on the contributions made to this issue by Jacques-Alain Miller over a long period of his teaching, by Jacques Lacan in his late work and by some of the work produced in the Lacanian orientation more broadly. Register here.
On YouTube, Darian Leader talks to Dr Vanessa Sinclair about his latest book, Jouissance: Sexuality, Suffering and Satisfaction. The interview explores the history of how psychoanalysis has conceived of enjoyment. Leader touches on how some of the earlier debates in the analytic community have been obscured by the term ‘jouissance’, and how it has come to subsume all the ways in which the experience of satisfaction is conceived. Equally, the lack of engagement between psychoanalysis and sexology – so important in the early history of the analytic movement – is discussed. This question will be explored more in Leader’s next book, which is heralded at the end of this interview.
Gabriel Tupinambá’s recent talk on ‘A History of the Other: Sex, Kinship and the Conditions of Psychoanalysis’, is also now on YouTube. Given for Lacan In Scotland at the end of September, Tupinambá’s talk asks why psychoanalysis emerged when it did – and what is its debt to these historical conditions? Tupinambá proposes 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.
Also new to YouTube from the past month is Derek Hook’s presentation ‘A Lacanian Approach to Perversion’, given at the Lacan: Clinic & Culture conference at Duquesne University in October. Hook’s lecture opens with the question of whether the clinical category of ‘perversion’ attains the status of a subjective structure. The talk introduces and explains Lacan’s idea that the perverse subject makes themselves the object-cause of the Other’s jouissance. It focusses on two brief vignettes and ends with a few short critical comments.
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