Hello from the American Midwest,
Where I am someone trying to help as many people as I can learn about psychoanalysis as a theory, a clinical practice, and perhaps as a way of being in the world.
This work takes up lots of my time, energy, and money. Be that as it may, it is one of the most fulfilling and satisfying I've ever encountered.
This newsletter is an account of some of the work.
The InForm Interview with Ryan Engley went up this past Tuesday. It was easy to get it posted because I did not need to do much editing. (When I only need to do a little editing and mixing, the process can go very fast!)
I've got another interview scheduled for this coming Tuesday, which will be with a practicing analyst who works to provide an experience of psychoanalysis to the poor, and other people outside the reach of mental health systems in the United States. It is an interview I'm looking forward to.
I've been reading the book The Feminine: A Mode of Jouissance by Marie-Hélène Brousse over this past week. It's a small book, only 77 pages (66 pages of text and 11 pages of notes, references, etc.), but I'm reading it slowly.
I'm going to share my reading of a few sentences with you.
Please note: this is my reading, not the reading. I'm positive that many people would say my reading is wrong. Be that as it may, this is my reading.
Psychoanalysis is also a discourse. But the Lacanian orientation emphasizes that, unlike other discourses, it excludes domination.
- Calling something a "discourse" is saying that it is a "social bond" or a type of relationship.
- The "Lacanian orientation" is the Lacanian style of thinking about and then performing psychoanalysis.
- Lacanians, unlike other psychotherapists and (possibly) other psychoanalysts, are very committed to not using psychoanalysis as a tool to dominate their analysands/patients.
[Lacanaian psychoanalysis] displace is the element which is in the position of the agent of power in the other three discourses, namely the master-word and prejudices in the masters discourse; exposed and objectified knowledge in the university discourse; and subjective division in the hysterics discourse.
Here Brousse reiterates that the analyst's discourse, or the relationship between an analysand and their analyst, is different from the sort of relationship people have with other important things in their lives. She does this by comparing the relationship a person has with their analyst to the relationships they might have with
- Authority figures such as CEOs, bosses, gurus, parents, etc. (The master's discourse)
- Knowledge figures such as professors, teachers, experts, etc. (The university's discourse)
- Activist causes/figures demanding social, environmental, or economic changes. (The hysteric's discourse)
In the three discourses (social bonds, relationships) listed above, there is always a demand issued by the agent half of the relationship to the other half. A sort of "you must produce X!"
Many psychotherapists work within one of the three discourses listed above; they tell their patients what the patient "needs to do." Sometimes they "advise" or "coach," but these were just other words for making demands that the patient do (produce) something.
It is only in the analyst's discourse that no demand is made.
Understanding this is very important to understanding psychoanalysis.
There are so many great sentences and paragraphs in this small book. It is proof that you don't need to make something long to make it excellent or thought-provoking.
I sent out an email announcing the [S][J][P] Membership program on Wednesday. Sending that out was something I've wanted to do, but holding off on for a long time.
If you're thinking about becoming a member, it would mean a lot to me if you did.
(It would also help offset the hosting costs for all the different projects I do/things I make.)
You can click the button below to log into [S][J][P] and offer some financial support towards the production of InForm: Podcast, this newsletter, and other work that [S][J][P] powers.
This week was full of making podcasts, setting up my membership program, and grading. There was not a lot of time for me to write. Be that as it may, I was able to do some writing that I might use in the text I'm thinking will be about psychoanalysis, civilization, and the state.
It is an extension of the little bit of text I shared in last week's email newsletter. However, what I wrote this week is not in a place where I feel like I can share it (it is way too rough draft).
I've also been posting more frequently on the [S][J][P] site, which I redesigned this week when I launched the membership program. (My thinking is for short bits of writing I'll do posts rather than emailing everyone.) Here is what these short posts look like:
As always, thanks for taking the time to read.
Make some glorious mistakes.
Till next time.