The Cartesian cogito—the principle articulated by Descartes that "I think, therefore I am"—is often hailed as the precursor of modern science. At the same time, the cogito's agent, the ego, is sometimes feared as the agency of manipulative domination responsible for all present woes, from patriarchal oppression to ecological catastrophes. Without psychoanalyzing philosophy, Cogito and the Unconscious explores the vicissitudes of the cogito and shows that psychoanalyses can render visible a constitutive madness within modern philosophy, the point at which "I think, therefore I am" becomes obsessional neurosis characterized by "If I stop thinking, I will cease to exist." Noting that for Lacan the Cartesian construct is the same as the Freudian "subject of the unconscious," the contributors follow Lacan's plea for a psychoanalytic return to the cogito. Along the path of this return, they examine the ethical attitude that befits modern subjectivity, the inherent sexualization of modern subjectivity, the impasse in which the Cartesian project becomes involved given the enigmatic status of the human body, and the Cartesian subject's confrontation with its modern critics, including Althusser, Bataille, and Dennett. In a style that has become familiar to Žižek's readers, these essays bring together a strict conceptual analysis and an approach to a wide range of cultural and ideological phenomena—from the sadist paradoxes of Kant's moral philosophy to the universe of Ayn Rand's novels, from the question "Which, if any, is the sex of the cogito?" to the defense of the cogito against the onslaught of cognitive sciences. Challenging us to reconsider fundamental notions of human consciousness and modern subjectivity, this is a book whose very Lacanian orthodoxy makes it irreverently transgressive of predominant theoretical paradigms. Cogito and the Unconscious will appeal to readers interested in philosophy, psychoanalysis, cultural studies, and theories of ideology. Contributors. Miran Bozovic, Mladen Dolar, Alain Grosrichard, Marc de Kessel, Robert Pfaller, Renata Salecl, Slavoj Žižek, Alenka Zupancic
This book identifies and explores the key philosophical influences upon Paul Ricoeur and Jacques Lacan, tracing the origins and development of their principal ideas and identifying the similarities and differences between them.
by Paul Ricoeur It is already a piece of good fortune to find oneself understood by a reader who is at once demanding and benevolent. It is an even greater fortune to be better understood by another than by one's own self. In effect, when I look back, I am rather struck by the discontinuity among my works, each of which takes on a specific problem and apparently has little more in common with its predecessor than the fact of having left an overflow of unanswered questions behind it as a residue. On the contrary, Domenico Jervolino's interpretation of my works, which extend over more than forty years, stresses their coherence, in spite of the gap in time between my present, soon to be issued work--Temps et Recit--and my first, Philosophie de la Volonte: Ie Volontaire et l'lnvolontaire. Our friend finds the principle of coherence first of all in the recurrence of a problem: the destiny of the idea of subjectivity, caught in the cross-fire between Nietzsche and Heidegger on one side and semiology, psychoanalysis and the critique of ideology on the other. He finds it likewise in the insistence on a method: the mediating role played by interpretation, mainly of texts, with regard to reflexion on self.
This striking Lacanian contribution to discourse analysis is also a critique of contemporary psychological abstraction, as well as a reassessment of the radical opposition between psychology and psychoanalysis. This original introduction to Lacans work bridges the gap between discourse-analytical debates in social psychology and the social-theoretical extensions of discourse theory. David Pavon Cuellar provides a precise definition and a detailed explanation of key Lacanian concepts, and illustrates how they may be put to work on a concrete discourse, in this case a fragment of an interview obtained by the author from the Mexican underground Popular Revolutionary Forces (EPR). Throughout the book, Lacanian concepts are compared to their counterparts in psychology. Such a comparison reveals insuperable incompatibilities between the two series of concepts. The author shows that Lacan's psychoanalytical terminology can neither be translated nor assimilated to the terms of current psychology. Among the notions in actual or potential competition with Lacanian concepts, the book deals with those proposed by semiology, Marxism, phenomenology, constructionism, deconstruction, and hermeneutics.
What happened to musical modernism? When did it end? Did it end? In this unorthodox Lacanian account of European New Music, Seth Brodsky focuses on the unlikely year 1989, when New Music hardly takes center stage. Instead one finds Rostropovich playing Bach at Checkpoint Charlie; or Bernstein changing “Joy” to “Freedom” in Beethoven’s Ninth; or David Hasselhoff lip-synching “Looking for Freedom” to thousands on New Year’s Eve. But if such spectacles claim to master their historical moment, New Music unconsciously takes the role of analyst. In so doing, it restages earlier scenes of modernism. As world politics witnesses a turning away from the possibility of revolution, musical modernism revolves in place, performing century-old tasks of losing, failing, and beginning again, in preparation for a revolution to come.
Jacques Lacan (1901-1980) is undoubtedly the central figure of psychoanalysis in the second half of the 20th century. He not only revolutionized the psychoanalytic practice, but in his 'return to Freud', he also deployed a global reinterpretation of the entire structural linguistics and semiotics.The influence of Lacan's work is widespread. It gave rise to passionate discussions not only in France, but also in the UK, US, Germany, Italy, Latin America, Japan and Eastern Europe, stretching beyond the field of psychoanalysis itself, to philosophy, the social sciences and cultural studies.The texts selected present the entire scope of the Lacan debate focusing on the four main domains of Lacan's influence: psychoanalytic theory and practice; philosophy; social sciences and cultural studies.
Returning to questions about ideology and subjectivity, Flisfeder argues that Slavoj Žižek's theory of film aims to re-politicize film studies and film theory, bringing cinema into the fold of twenty-first century politics.
Slavoj Žižek is one of the most interesting and important philosophers working today, known chiefly for his theoretical explorations of popular culture and contemporary politics. This book focuses on the generally neglected and often overshadowed philosophical core of Žižek’s work—an essential component in any true appreciation of this unique thinker’s accomplishment. His central concern, Žižek has proclaimed, is to use psychoanalysis (especially the teachings of Jacques Lacan) to redeploy the insights of late-modern German philosophy, in particular, the thought of Kant, Schelling, and Hegel. By taking this avowal seriously, Adrian Johnston finally clarifies the philosophical project underlying Žižek’s efforts. His book charts the interlinked ontology and theory of subjectivity constructed by Žižek at the intersection of German idealism and Lacanian theory. Johnston also uses Žižek’s combination of philosophy and psychoanalysis to address two perennial philosophical problems: the relationship of mind and body, and the nature of human freedom. By bringing together the past two centuries of European philosophy, psychoanalytic metapsychology, and cutting-edge work in the natural sciences, Johnston develops a transcendental materialist theory of subjectivity—in short, an account of how more-than-material forms of subjectivity can emerge from a corporeal being. His work shows how an engagement with Žižek’s philosophy can produce compelling answers to today’s most vexing and urgent questions as inherited from the history of ideas.
A multidisciplinary compilation of essays and other writings explores the antecedents of Internet technology in the works of Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Mary Shelley, William Gibson, and others. (Technology)
The essays within this collection explore the possibilities and potentialities of all three positions, presenting encounters that are, at times contradictory, at other times supportive, as well as complementary. The collection thereby enriches the questions that are being raised within contemporary cinematic studies.
This book proposes a taxonomy of jurisprudence and legal practice, based on the discourse theory of Jacques Lacan. In the anglophone academy, the positivist jurisprudence of H.L.A. Hart provides the most influential account of law. But just as positivism ignores the practice of law by lawyers, even within the academy, the majority of professors are also not pursuing Hart's positivist project. Rather, they are engaged in policy-oriented scholarship - that tries to explain law in terms of society's collective goals - or in doctrinal legal scholarship - that does not try to describe what law is, or to supply justifications for it - but which examines the 'internal' logic of law. Lacan's discourse theory has the power to differentiate the various roles of the practicing lawyer and the legal scholar. It is also able to explain the striking lack of communication between diverse schools of legal scholarship and between legal academia and the legal profession. Although extremely influential in Europe and South America, Lacanian theory remains largely unexplored (in the English-speaking world) outside of the field of comparative literature. In taking up the jurisprudential ramifications of Lacan's work, The Four Lacanian Discourses thus constitutes an original contribution to current theoretical and practical understandings of law.
This book is an examination of three major French thinkers of the seventeenth century, Descartes, Pascal, and Malebranche, of whom the latter two are comparatively little studied in the English-speaking world. It deals with a common attitude of suspicion towards everyday experience, which theysee as dominated and obscured by sensation, imagination, and the presence of the body. This attitude, however, obliges them to develop detailed and sophisticated accounts of the shaping of experience not only by the body but by interpersonal and social relationships, and of the tension between humannature as it is and as we experience it. The treatment of Descartes thus challenges the interpretation that sees him as eliminating the body from 'subjectivity', while that of Pascal and Malebranche shows how their critical attitude towards experience (a fertile source for twentieth-century Frenchthinkers) is linked with their religious doctrines, especially their Augustinian emphasis on Original Sin.
Modern European Criticism and Theory offers the reader a comprehensive critical overview of the widespread and profound contest of ideas within European 'theory'. The book focuses primarily on the thought of major voices in poetics, philosophy, linguistics, and psychoanalysis, as well as in literary and cultural studies from the Enlightenment to the present day. Examining how conceptions of subjectivity, identity and gender have been questioned, the more than 50 essays written by acknowledged experts in their fields critically assess the ways in which we think, see, and act in the world, as well as the ways in which we represent such thought psychologically, politically, and culturally. A further reading list accompanies each chapter.
Following François Laruelle's nonstandard philosophy and the work of Judith Butler, Drucilla Cornell, Luce Irigaray, and Rosi Braidotti, Katerina Kolozova reclaims the relevance of categories traditionally rendered "unthinkable" by postmodern feminist philosophies, such as "the real," "the one," "the limit," and "finality," thus critically repositioning poststructuralist feminist philosophy and gender/queer studies. Poststructuralist (feminist) theory sees the subject as a purely linguistic category, as always already multiple, as always already nonfixed and fluctuating, as limitless discursivity, and as constitutively detached from the instance of the real. This reconceptualization is based on the exclusion of and dichotomous opposition to notions of the real, the one (unity and continuity), and the stable. The non-philosophical reading of postructuralist philosophy engenders new forms of universalisms for global debate and action, expressed in a language the world can understand. It also liberates theory from ideological paralysis, recasting the real as an immediately experienced human condition determined by gender, race, and social and economic circumstance.
Re-Thinking the Cogito seeks to combine a strongly naturalistic with a distinctively rationalist perspective on some nowadays much-discussed issues in philosophy of mind. Against the common view that they involve downright incompatible conceptions of mind, knowledge and ethics it seeks to unite a naturalism that draws on recent advances in neurophysiology and cognitive science with an outlook that gives full weight to those normative values at the heart of rationalist thought. True to the book's constructive spirit, Norris offers various detailed proposals for bringing the two approaches into a mutually enhancing - though also mutually provocative - relationship. He finds that claim strikingly prefigured in Spinoza's working-out of a non-reductive yet metaphysically uncompromising mind/body monism. Moreover he suggests how a thoroughly naturalised approach might yet become a locus of productive engagement with the work of an ultra-rationalist thinker such as Alain Badiou. Thus Norris puts the case that physically embodied human thought has cognitive, intellectual and creative powers that cannot and need not be accounted for in terms of conscious (let alone self-conscious) reflection.
The articles included in this volume originate from contributions to the International Conference on Philosophy and Science in Phenomenologi cal Perspecllve, held in Buffalo in March 1982. The occasion had been to honor the late Professor Marvin Farber, a long time distinguished member of the Department of Philosophy, State University of New York at Buffalo. and the Founding Editor of the journal, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. Many of the papers were subsequently rewritten, expanded or other wise edited to be published in the series Phaenomenoiogica. The articles lIy Professor Frings and Professor Rotenstreich had not been presented at the conference, although they were originally invited papers. We regret that not all papers submitted to the conference, including com ments, could be accommodated in this volume. Nonetheless, our sincere gratitude is due to all participants who have made the conference a memorable and worthy event. nt of Philosophy, State University of New York at The Departme Buffalo, as the sponsor of the conference, wishes to acknowledge the grants from the Conferences in the Disciplines Program, Conversations in the Disciplines Program, and the International Studies of the State University of New York at Buffalo, as well as for a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The International Phenomenological Society, with Professor Roderick Chisholm succeeding Marvin Farber as its president, co-sponsored the conference.
In this collection of 18 essays written over a period of about 20 years, author Martin Aronson muses on a variety of topics, which span from the sublimely philosophical to the earthily pragmatic. Written with the intention of originally and coherently exploring a personal topic of interest, each essay attempts to wed insight with clarity. In Cogito, the author meditates on such concerns as the nature of chaos and wholeness, the direction of Western civilization, the dual conception of God, the trinity motif in the world's major religions, and the likely dominant trends in history during the next 50 years. Though each essay is a complete study in itself, the reader can trace the evolution of thought of an arresting and provocative contemporary thinker.
The object of this work is to establish the fact of an unconscious mind in man, and to trace in brief some of its powers and the various ways in which they are exhibited. We shall hope to show that this mind is the seat of character and of conscience and the spirit-life; the source of conduct, of instinct, of tact, and the thousand qualities that make us what we are; the home of memory, the ultimate governor and ruler of all actions and functions of the body, and in every way a most important factor in our psychical and physical life. -- Introduction. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved).