Jacques Lacan: La psychanalyse’ 1 & 2 (1974) by Benoît Jacquot | English Subtitles

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In “La psy­ch­analy­se”, a two part doc­u­men­tary, the psy­cho­an­a­lyst Jacques Lacan answers to ques­tions sub­mit­ted by his son-in-law Jacques-Alain Miller under the direc­tion of Benoît Jacquot. The Office de Radiod­if­fu­sion Tele­vi­sion Fran­caise (ORTF, the french pub­lic TV) broad­cast this pro­gram. This doc­u­men­tary and its text became famous because this is the only tele­vi­su­al expe­ri­ence prac­ticed by Lacan.

It would be fair to say that there are few twen­ti­eth cen­tury thinkers who have had such a far-reach­ing influ­ence on sub­sequent intel­lec­tu­al life in the human­it­ies as Jac­ques Lacan. Lacan’s “return to the mean­ing of Freud” pro­foundly changed the insti­tu­tion­al face of the psy­cho­ana­lyt­ic move­ment inter­na­tion­ally. His sem­inars in the 1950s were one of the form­at­ive envir­on­ments of the cur­rency of philo­soph­ic­al ideas that dom­in­ated French let­ters in the 1960s and ’70s, and which has come to be known in the Anglo­phone world as “post-struc­tur­al­ism.”

Capitalist Realism Killed Mark Fisher

In his dread­ful las­si­tude and object­less rage, Cobain seemed to give wea­ried voice to the despon­den­cy of the gen­er­a­tion that had come after his­to­ry, whose every move was antic­i­pat­ed, tracked, bought and sold before it had even hap­pened. Cobain knew that he was just anoth­er piece of spec­ta­cle, that noth­ing runs bet­ter on MTV than a protest again­st MTV; knew that his every move was a cliché script­ed in advance, knew that even real­iz­ing it is a cliché.’

What is writ­ten above has always been one of my favourite quotes, even though I nev­er lis­tened to the band Nir­vana. It’s tak­en from Cap­i­tal­ist Real­ism, the author of which, Mark Fish­er, just passed away on 13th Jan­u­ary 2017.

Fur­ther read­ing: ‘Why men­tal health is a polit­i­cal issue’ by Mark Fish­er, The Guardian, 16th July 2012.

Jacques Lacan, An Introductory Guide’ by Lionel Bailly

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Jacques Lacan was one of the most impor­tant psy­cho­an­a­lysts ever to have lived. Build­ing upon the work of Sig­mund Freud, he sought to refine Freudi­an insights with the use of lin­guis­tics and math­e­mat­ics, argu­ing that “the struc­ture of uncon­scious is like a lan­guage.” He is wide­ly mis­un­der­stood and often unfair­ly dis­missed as impen­e­tra­ble. This book demon­strates how Lacan’s ideas are still vital­ly rel­e­vant to con­tem­po­rary issues of men­tal health treat­ment. Includ­ing cov­er­age of devel­op­ments in Laca­ni­an psy­cho­analy­sis since his death, this is the per­fect intro­duc­tion to the great mod­ern the­o­rist.

Symposium’ by Plato

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The Greek word συμπόσιον (sumpo­sion) means a drink­ing par­ty (a fact shame­ful­ly ignored by the orga­niz­ers of mod­ern sym­posia), and the par­ty described in Plato’s Sym­po­sium is one sup­pos­ed­ly given in the year 416 BC by the play­wright Agath­on to cel­e­brate his vic­to­ry in the dra­mat­ic fes­ti­val of the Lenaea. He has already given one par­ty, the pre­vi­ous evening; this sec­ond par­ty is for a select group of friends, and host and guests alike are feel­ing a lit­tle frail. They decide to fore­go heavy drink­ing, and con­cen­trate on con­ver­sa­tion. The sub­ject of their con­ver­sa­tion is Eros, the god of sex­u­al love.

Sym­po­sium was writ­ten around 384 BC, and many would regard it as Plato’s finest dia­logue, from an artis­tic point of view, and the most enjoy­able to read or lis­ten to. There are many rea­sons for this, includ­ing the key­hole glimpse it gives us of Athe­ni­an soci­ety; the role played in the dia­logue by Socrates; the descrip­tion of what has come to be known as Pla­ton­ic love; and the char­ac­ter­i­za­tion of the speak­ers.

How to Talk About Books You Haven’t Read’ by Pierre Bayard

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How to Talk About Books You Haven’t Read’
by Pier­re Bayard

Trans­lat­ed from the French
by Jef­frey Mehlman

Pier­re Bayard is a pro­fes­sor of French lit­er­a­ture at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Paris VIII and a psy­cho­an­a­lyst. He is the author of Who Killed Roger Ack­oyd? and many oth­er books.

Jefery Mehlman is a pro­fes­sor of French lit­er­a­ture at Boston Uni­ver­si­ty and the author of a num­ber of books, includ­ing Emi­gré New York. He has trans­lat­ed works by Der­ri­da, Lacan, Ban­chot, and oth­er authors.