The term 'extimacy' (French: extimitè) was coined by Jacques Lacan by combining the prefix 'ex' (from exterieur or 'exterior') to the French word intimitè ('intimacy').
This neologism indicates the manner in which psychoanalysis problematizes the opposition between inside and outside.
For example, the real is just as much inside as outside.
The unconscious is not a purely interior psychic system but an intersubjective structure ('the unconscious is outside').
The Other is "something strange to me, although it is at the heart of me."
The center of the subject is outside; the subject is ex-centric.
The structure of extimacy is perfectly expressed in the topology of the torus and of the moebius strip.
Lacan goes beyond Freud.
Not a beyond Freud which leaves Freud behind; it is a beyond Freud which is nevertheless in Freud.
Lacan is looking for something in Freud's work of which Freud himself was unaware.
Something which we may call "extimate," as it is so very intimate that Freud himself was not aware of it.
So very intimate that this intimacy is extimate.
It is an internal beyond.
- ↑ Lacan, Jacques. The Seminar. Book VII. The Ethics of Psychoanalysis, 1959-60. Trans. Dennis Porter. London: Routledge, 1992. p.139
- ↑ Lacan, Jacques. The Seminar. Book VII. The Ethics of Psychoanalysis, 1959-60. Trans. Dennis Porter. London: Routledge, 1992. p.71
- ↑ Lacan, Jacques. Écrits: A Selection. Trans. Alan Sheridan. London: Tavistock Publications, 1977. p.165, 171