# Difference between revisions of "Algebra"

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[[Algebra]] ([[Fr]]. ''[[algèbre]]'') is a branch of [[mathematics]] (or [[logic]]) concerned with the properties and relationships of abstract entities represented in symbolic form. | [[Algebra]] ([[Fr]]. ''[[algèbre]]'') is a branch of [[mathematics]] (or [[logic]]) concerned with the properties and relationships of abstract entities represented in symbolic form. | ||

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Three main reasons lie behind this attempt at [[formalization]]. | Three main reasons lie behind this attempt at [[formalization]]. | ||

− | :1. [[Formalization is necessary for [[psychoanalysis]] to acquire [[scientific]] status. | + | :1. [[Formalization]] is necessary for [[psychoanalysis]] to acquire [[scientific]] status. |

:Just as [[Claude Lévi-Strauss]] uses quasi-mathematical formulae in an attempt to set [[anthropology]] on a more [[scientific]] footing, [[Lacan]] attempts to do the same for [[psychoanalysis]] | :Just as [[Claude Lévi-Strauss]] uses quasi-mathematical formulae in an attempt to set [[anthropology]] on a more [[scientific]] footing, [[Lacan]] attempts to do the same for [[psychoanalysis]] | ||

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:The [[matheme|formulae]] thus become an essential aspect of the [[training]] of [[psychoanalysis]] which take their place alongside [[training|training analysis]] as a medium for the transmission of [[psychoanalytic]] [[knowledge]]. | :The [[matheme|formulae]] thus become an essential aspect of the [[training]] of [[psychoanalysis]] which take their place alongside [[training|training analysis]] as a medium for the transmission of [[psychoanalytic]] [[knowledge]]. | ||

− | :3. [[Formalization of [[psychoanalytic theory]] in terms of [[algebraic]] [[symbols]] is a means of preventing [[knowledge|intuitive understanding]], which [[Lacan]] regards as an [[imaginary]] [[lure]] which hinders access to the [[symbolic]]. | + | :3. [[Formalization]] of [[psychoanalytic theory]] in terms of [[algebraic]] [[symbols]] is a means of preventing [[knowledge|intuitive understanding]], which [[Lacan]] regards as an [[imaginary]] [[lure]] which hinders access to the [[symbolic]]. |

:Rather than being understood in an intuitive way, the [[algebraic]] [[symbols]] are to be used, manipulated and read in various different ways.<ref>{{E}} p.313</ref> | :Rather than being understood in an intuitive way, the [[algebraic]] [[symbols]] are to be used, manipulated and read in various different ways.<ref>{{E}} p.313</ref> |

## Revision as of 20:48, 7 August 2006

Algebra (Fr. *algèbre*) is a branch of mathematics (or logic) concerned with the properties and relationships of abstract entities represented in symbolic form.

## Jacques Lacan

Jacques Lacan begins to use algebraic symbols in 1955 (in an attempt to formalise psychoanalysis).

### Formalization of Psychoanalysis

Three main reasons lie behind this attempt at formalization.

- 1. Formalization is necessary for psychoanalysis to acquire scientific status.

- Just as Claude Lévi-Strauss uses quasi-mathematical formulae in an attempt to set anthropology on a more scientific footing, Lacan attempts to do the same for psychoanalysis

- Lacan used quasi-mathematical formulae in an attempt to set psychoanalysis on a more scientific footing.

- 2. Formalization can provide a core of psychoanalytic theory which can be transmitted integrally even to those who have never experienced psychoanalytic treatment.

- The formulae thus become an essential aspect of the training of psychoanalysis which take their place alongside training analysis as a medium for the transmission of psychoanalytic knowledge.

- 3. Formalization of psychoanalytic theory in terms of algebraic symbols is a means of preventing intuitive understanding, which Lacan regards as an imaginary lure which hinders access to the symbolic.

- Rather than being understood in an intuitive way, the algebraic symbols are to be used, manipulated and read in various different ways.
^{[1]}

*Écrits: A Selection*. Trans. Alan Sheridan. London: Tavistock Publications, 1977. p.313