Difference between revisions of "Aggressivity"

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(agressivitÈ)
  
(agressivitÈ) Aggressivity is one of the central issues that
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Aggressivity is one of the central issues that Lacan deals with in his papers in the period 1936 to the early 1950s. The first point that should be noted is that Lacan draws a distinction between aggressivity and aggression, in that the latter refers only to violent acts whereas the former is a fundamental relation which underlies not only such acts but many other phenomena also (see Sl, 177). Thus aggressivity is just as present, Lacan argues, in apparently loving acts as in violent ones; it 'underlies the activity of the philanthropist, the idealist, the pedagogue, and even the reformer' (E, 7). In taking this stance, Lacan is simply restating Freud's concept of ambivalence (the interdependence of love and hate), which Lacan regards as one of the fundamental discoveries of psychoanalysis.
 
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Lacan situates aggressivity in the dual relation between the ego and the counterpart. In the MIRROR STAGE, the infant sees its reflection in the mirror as a wholeness, in contrast with the uncoordination in the real body: this contrast is experienced as an aggressive tension between the specular image and the real body, since the wholeness of the image seems to threaten the body with disintegration and fragmentation (see FRAGMENTED BODY).
  Lacan deals with in his papers in the period 1936 to the early 1950s. The first
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The consequent identification with the specular image thus implies an ambivalent relation with the counterpart, involving both eroticism and aggression. This 'erotic aggression' continues as a fundamental ambivalence underlying all future forms of identification, and is an essential characteristic of narcissism. Narcissism can thus easily veer from extreme self-love to the opposite extreme of 'narcissistic suicidal aggression' (agression suicidaire narcissique) (Ec, 187).
 
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By linking aggressivity to the imaginary order of eros, Lacan seems to diverge significantly from Freud, since Freud sees aggressivity as an outward manifestation of the death drive (which is, in Lacanian terms, situated not in the imaginary but in the symbolic order). Aggressivity is also related by Lacan to the Hegelian concept of the fight to the death, which is a stage in the dialectic of the master and the slave.
point that should be noted is that Lacan draws a distinction between aggres-
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Lacan argues that it is important to bring the analysand's aggressivity into play early in the treatment by causing it to emerge as negative transference.
 
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This aggressivity directed towards the analyst then becomes 'the initial knot of the analytic drama' (E, 14). This phase of the treatment is very important since if the aggressivity is handled correctly by the analyst, it will be accompanied by 'a marked decrease in the patient's deepest resistances' (Lacan, 1951b: 13).
sivity and aggression, in that the latter refers only to violent acts whereas the
 
 
 
  former is a fundamental relation which underlies not only such acts but many
 
 
 
  other phenomena also (see Sl, 177). Thus aggressivity is just as present, Lacan
 
 
 
  argues, in apparently loving acts as in violent ones; it 'underlies the activity of
 
 
 
  the philanthropist, the idealist, the pedagogue, and even the reformer' (E, 7). In
 
 
 
taking this stance, Lacan is simply restating Freud's concept of ambivalence
 
 
 
(the interdependence of love and hate), which Lacan regards as one of the
 
 
 
  fundamental discoveries of psychoanalysis.
 
 
 
      Lacan situates aggressivity in the dual relation between the ego and the
 
 
 
counterpart. In the MIRROR STAGE, the infant sees its reflection in the mirror as a
 
 
 
wholeness, in contrast with the uncoordination in the real body: this contrast is
 
 
 
experienced as an aggressive tension between the specular image and the real
 
 
 
body, since the wholeness of the image             seems to threaten the body with
 
 
 
disintegration and fragmentation (see FRAGMENTED BODY).
 
 
 
      The consequent identification with the specular image thus implies             an
 
 
 
  ambivalent relation with the counterpart, involving both eroticism and aggres-
 
 
 
  sion. This 'erotic aggression' continues as a fundamental ambivalence under-
 
 
 
lying all future forms of identification, and is an essential characteristic of
 
 
 
  narcissism. Narcissism can thus easily         veer from extreme self-love to the
 
 
 
opposite extreme of 'narcissistic suicidal aggression' (agression suicidaire
 
 
 
narcissique) (Ec, 187).
 
 
 
      By linking aggressivity to the imaginary order of eros, Lacan seems to
 
 
 
diverge significantly from Freud, since Freud sees aggressivity as an outward
 
 
 
  manifestation of the death drive (which is, in Lacanian terms, situated not in
 
 
 
the imaginary but in the symbolic order). Aggressivity is also related by Lacan
 
 
 
  to the Hegelian concept of the fight to the death, which is a stage in the
 
 
 
dialectic of the master and the slave.
 
 
 
      Lacan argues that it is important to bring the analysand's aggressivity into
 
 
 
play early in the treatment by causing it to emerge as negative transference.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
    This aggressivity directed towards the analyst then becomes 'the initial knot of
 
 
 
    the analytic drama' (E, 14). This phase of the treatment is very important since
 
 
 
    if the aggressivity is handled correctly by the analyst, it will be accompanied
 
 
 
    by 'a marked decrease in the patient's deepest resistances' (Lacan, 1951b: 13).
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
 
== References ==
 
== References ==

Revision as of 04:21, 26 April 2006

(agressivitÈ)

Aggressivity is one of the central issues that Lacan deals with in his papers in the period 1936 to the early 1950s. The first point that should be noted is that Lacan draws a distinction between aggressivity and aggression, in that the latter refers only to violent acts whereas the former is a fundamental relation which underlies not only such acts but many other phenomena also (see Sl, 177). Thus aggressivity is just as present, Lacan argues, in apparently loving acts as in violent ones; it 'underlies the activity of the philanthropist, the idealist, the pedagogue, and even the reformer' (E, 7). In taking this stance, Lacan is simply restating Freud's concept of ambivalence (the interdependence of love and hate), which Lacan regards as one of the fundamental discoveries of psychoanalysis. Lacan situates aggressivity in the dual relation between the ego and the counterpart. In the MIRROR STAGE, the infant sees its reflection in the mirror as a wholeness, in contrast with the uncoordination in the real body: this contrast is experienced as an aggressive tension between the specular image and the real body, since the wholeness of the image seems to threaten the body with disintegration and fragmentation (see FRAGMENTED BODY). The consequent identification with the specular image thus implies an ambivalent relation with the counterpart, involving both eroticism and aggression. This 'erotic aggression' continues as a fundamental ambivalence underlying all future forms of identification, and is an essential characteristic of narcissism. Narcissism can thus easily veer from extreme self-love to the opposite extreme of 'narcissistic suicidal aggression' (agression suicidaire narcissique) (Ec, 187). By linking aggressivity to the imaginary order of eros, Lacan seems to diverge significantly from Freud, since Freud sees aggressivity as an outward manifestation of the death drive (which is, in Lacanian terms, situated not in the imaginary but in the symbolic order). Aggressivity is also related by Lacan to the Hegelian concept of the fight to the death, which is a stage in the dialectic of the master and the slave. Lacan argues that it is important to bring the analysand's aggressivity into play early in the treatment by causing it to emerge as negative transference. This aggressivity directed towards the analyst then becomes 'the initial knot of the analytic drama' (E, 14). This phase of the treatment is very important since if the aggressivity is handled correctly by the analyst, it will be accompanied by 'a marked decrease in the patient's deepest resistances' (Lacan, 1951b: 13).

References