Difference between revisions of "Alienation"

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alienation (aliÈnation)                 
  
alienation (aliÈnation)                  The term 'alienation' does not constitute part
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The term 'alienation' does not constitute part of Freud's theoretical vocabulary. In Lacan's work the term implies both psychiatric and philosophical references:
  
of Freud's theoretical vocabulary. In Lacan's work the term implies both
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*Psychiatry       
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French psychiatry in the nineteenth century (e.g. Pinel) conceived of mental illness as aliÈnation mentale, and a common term in French for 'madman' is aliÈnÈ (a term which Lacan himself uses; Ec, 154).
  
psychiatric and philosophical references:
+
*Philosophy        
 
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The term 'alienation' is the usual translation for the German term Entfremdung which features in the philosophy of Hegel and Marx.
  . Psychiatry        French psychiatry in the nineteenth century (e.g. Pinel)
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However, the Lacanian concept of alienation differs greatly from the ways that the term is employed in the Hegelian and Marxist tradition (as Jacques-Alain Miller points out; Sll, 215). For Lacan, alienation is not an accident that befalls the subject and which can be transcended, but an essential constitutive feature of the subject. The subject is fundamentally SPLIT, alienated from himself, and there is no escape from this division, no possibility of 'wholeness' or synthesis.
 
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Alienation is an inevitable consequence of the process by which the ego is constituted by identification with the counterpart: 'the initial synthesis of the ego is essentially an alter ego, it is alienated' (S3, 39). In Rimbaud's words, 'I is an other' (E, 23). Thus alienation belongs to the imaginary order: 'Alienation is constitutive of the imaginary order. Alienation is the imaginary as such' (S3, 146). Although alienation is            an essential characteristic of all subjectivity, psychosis represents a more extreme form of alienation.
conceived of mental illness       as aliÈnation mentale, and a common term in
+
Lacan coined the term EXTIMACY ÕO designate the nature of this alienation, in which alterity inhabits the innermost core of the subject. Lacan devotes the whole of chapter 16 of The Seminar, Book XI, The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis (1964a) to        a discussion of alienation and the related concept of separation.
 
 
French for 'madman' is aliÈnÈ (a term which Lacan himself uses; Ec, 154).
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  . Philosophy        The term 'alienation' is the usual translation for the German
 
 
 
  term Entfremdung which features in the philosophy of Hegel and Marx.
 
 
 
However, the Lacanian concept of alienation differs greatly from the ways
 
 
 
that the term is employed in the Hegelian and Marxist tradition (as Jacques-
 
 
 
Alain Miller points out; Sll, 215). For Lacan, alienation is not an accident that
 
 
 
befalls the subject and which can be transcended, but an essential constitutive
 
 
 
feature of the subject. The subject is fundamentally SPLIT, alienated from
 
 
 
himself, and there is no escape from this division, no possibility of 'whole-
 
 
 
ness' or synthesis.
 
 
 
      Alienation is an inevitable consequence of the process by which the ego is
 
 
 
constituted by identification with the counterpart: 'the initial synthesis of the
 
 
 
ego is essentially an alter ego, it is alienated' (S3, 39). In Rimbaud's words, 'I
 
 
 
is an other' (E, 23). Thus alienation belongs to the imaginary order: 'Alien-
 
 
 
ation is constitutive of the imaginary order. Alienation is the imaginary as
 
 
 
such' (S3, 146). Although alienation is            an essential characteristic of all
 
 
 
subjectivity, psychosis represents a more extreme form of alienation.
 
 
 
      Lacan coined the term EXTIMACY ÕO designate the nature of this alienation, in
 
 
 
which alterity inhabits the innermost core of the subject. Lacan devotes the
 
 
 
whole of chapter 16 of The Seminar, Book XI, The Four Fundamental
 
 
 
Concepts of Psychoanalysis (1964a) to        a discussion of alienation and the
 
 
 
related concept of separation.
 
  
  

Revision as of 04:42, 26 April 2006

alienation (aliÈnation)

The term 'alienation' does not constitute part of Freud's theoretical vocabulary. In Lacan's work the term implies both psychiatric and philosophical references:

  • Psychiatry

French psychiatry in the nineteenth century (e.g. Pinel) conceived of mental illness as aliÈnation mentale, and a common term in French for 'madman' is aliÈnÈ (a term which Lacan himself uses; Ec, 154).

  • Philosophy

The term 'alienation' is the usual translation for the German term Entfremdung which features in the philosophy of Hegel and Marx. However, the Lacanian concept of alienation differs greatly from the ways that the term is employed in the Hegelian and Marxist tradition (as Jacques-Alain Miller points out; Sll, 215). For Lacan, alienation is not an accident that befalls the subject and which can be transcended, but an essential constitutive feature of the subject. The subject is fundamentally SPLIT, alienated from himself, and there is no escape from this division, no possibility of 'wholeness' or synthesis. Alienation is an inevitable consequence of the process by which the ego is constituted by identification with the counterpart: 'the initial synthesis of the ego is essentially an alter ego, it is alienated' (S3, 39). In Rimbaud's words, 'I is an other' (E, 23). Thus alienation belongs to the imaginary order: 'Alienation is constitutive of the imaginary order. Alienation is the imaginary as such' (S3, 146). Although alienation is an essential characteristic of all subjectivity, psychosis represents a more extreme form of alienation. Lacan coined the term EXTIMACY ÕO designate the nature of this alienation, in which alterity inhabits the innermost core of the subject. Lacan devotes the whole of chapter 16 of The Seminar, Book XI, The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis (1964a) to a discussion of alienation and the related concept of separation.


References