Jacques-Alain Miller

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33-34 COnversations

Jacques-Alain Miller - the son-in-law of French psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan (in 1967 he married Lacan's daughter Judith Miller) - is a prominent Lacanian psychoanalyst. As a student at the École Normale Supérieure, he met Lacan in 1964 while attending his seminars at the rue d'Ulm. After having read everything Lacan had thus far published, he asked him, "Does your notion of the subject imply an ontology?" and an entente was made with him. In 1966 he founded Cahiers pour l'Analyse, a seminal publication whose editorial board included Alain Badiou, François Regnault and Jean-Claude Milner. He was the editor of Ornicar? when Lacan announced the dissolution of L'Ecole Française de Psychanalyse, and the foundation of L'École de la Cause Freudienne.

After Lacan's death in 1980, Jacques-Alain Miller started in 1983 his own weekly seminars, called "L'Orientation lacanienne" intended to expound and elucidate Lacan's work. He became the editor of Jacques Lacan's seminars, having so far published half of them in French. He also supervised the English translations of Lacan's work: "Écrits", and the seminars, "The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis", "The Ethics of Psychoanalysis", Encore - On feminine Sexuality. In 2001 he started a series of public interventions on behalf of the independence of psychoanalysis vis-à-vis government control in France. He wrote First Letter addressed by Jacques-Alain Miller to An Enlightened Public, "Clear Like Day Letter" and "The Tenderness of Terrorism" where he asserted that "an analyst is only authorized by her/himself (Lacan's dictum: l'analyste ne s'autorise que de lui-même).

At the same time Miller was responsible for an enormous expansion of Lacanian study groups throughtout the world: Spain, Great Britain and Italy in Europe, and Argentina and Brazil in Latin America. In the early nineties, Miller's work began to be translated into English and published in the United States trough the New York based cultural journal "Lacanian Ink". More recently other groups have taken root in America, notably in Omaha, Nebraska and around Columbia University in New York. In 1992 Miller set up the World Association of Psychoanalysis, WAP, in order to advance Lacan's teachings and today has over a thousand members in Europe, America and Australia. The WAP creates Schools that transmit psychoanalysis, ensure the formation of analysts, guarantee their qualification and the quality of their practice.

Within the frame of his "Orientation lacanienne" Miller works in conjunction with other European philosophers such as Slavoj Zizek and Alain Badiou.

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