In contrast with Freud, whose work was primarily written, Jacques Lacan's work was for the most part an oral improvisation from notes delivered as an ongoing seminar that he held in Paris from 1953 to 1980. From 1953 to 1963, Lacan's seminar was held at the Sainte-Anne Hospital in Paris. From 1964 to 1969, starting with seminar 11, it was held at the École Normale Supérieure on rue d'Ulm. And finally, from 1969 to 1980, starting with seminar 17, it was held before a much larger audience in the amphitheater of the law school at the Panthéon.
Even during Lacan's lifetime, the seminar circulated in the form of photocopies of diverse and unreliable written versions of the spoken text. Beginning in 1973, Lacan entrusted the transcription of the seminar to Jacques-Alain Miller. In an editor's note to The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis, the first of his publications of Lacan's seminars, Miller wrote, "My intention here was to be as unobtrusive as possible and to obtain from Jacques Lacan's spoken work an authentic version that would stand, in the future, for the original, which does not exist" (p. xi).
The individual seminars that make up Lacan's seminar are as follows:
- Seminar 1 (1953-1954): Freud 's Papers on Technique. (John Forrester, Trans.) New York: W. W. Norton, 1988.
- Seminar 2 (1954-1955): The Ego in Freud's Theory and in the Technique of Psychoanalysis. (Sylvana Tomaselli, Trans.) New York: W. W. Norton, 1988.
- Seminar 3 (1955-1956): The Psychoses. (Russell Grigg, Trans.) New York: W. W. Norton, 1993.
- Seminar 4 (1956-1957): La relation d'objet (Object relations). Paris: Seuil, 1994.
- Seminar 5 (1957-1958): Les formations de l'inconscient (Formations of the unconscious). Paris: Seuil, 1998.
- Seminar 6 (1958-1959): Le désir et son interprétation (Desire and its interpretation). Unpublished.
- Seminar 7 (1959-1960): The Ethics of Psychoanalysis. (Dennis Porter, Trans.) New York: W. W. Norton, 1992.
- Seminar 8 (1960-1961): Transfert (Transference). 2nd ed. Paris: Seuil, 2001.
- Seminar 9 (1961-1962): L'identification (Identification). Unpublished.
- Seminar 10 (1962-1963): L'angoisse (Anxiety). Paris: Seuil, 2004.
Name-of-the-Father was to be the next seminar, but only a single session was given, on November 25, 1963, at Sainte-Anne Hospital. Lacan stopped giving this seminar when he learned that the International Psychoanalytical Association had refused to reinstate him as a training analyst.
- Seminar 11 (1964): The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis. (Alan Sheridan, Trans.) New York, W. W. Norton, 1978.
- Seminar 12 (1964-1965): Problèmes cruciaux pour la psychanalyse (Crucial problems for psychoanalysis). Unpublished.
- Seminar 13 (1965-1966): L'objet de la psychanalyse (The object of psychoanalysis). Unpublished.
- Seminar 14 (1966-1967): La logique du fantasme (The logic of fantasy). Unpublished.
- Seminar 15 (1967-1968): L'acte psychanalytique (The psychoanalytic act). Unpublished.
- Seminar 16 (1968-1969): D'un Autreà l'autre (From one Other to the other). Unpublished.
- Seminar 17 (1969-1970): L'envers de la psychanalyse (The other side of psychoanalysis). Paris: Seuil, 1991.
- Seminar 18 (1970-1971): D'un discours qui ne serait pas du semblant (On a discourse that might not be a semblance). Unpublished.
- Seminar 19 (1971-1972): . . . ou pire (. . . or worse). Unpublished.
- Seminar 20 (1972-1973): On Feminine Sexuality: The Limits of Love and Knowledge, Encore. Translated by Bruce Fink. New York: Norton, 1998.
- Seminar 21 (1973-1974): Les non-dupes errent (Those who are not duped err). Unpublished.
- Seminar 22 (1974-1975): R.S.I. Ornicar? 2-5.
- Seminar 23 (1975-1976): Le sinthome (The sinthome [an archaic spelling of the word "symptom"]). Ornicar? 6-11.
- Seminar 24 (1976-1977): L'insu que sait de l'une bévue s'aileà mourre. Ornicar? 12-18.
The punning French title of this seminar is based on a fanciful French translation of the German word for the unconscious, "Unbewusste," as "une-bévue," which means a blunder or a mistake. As written, the title might be translated as "The unknown that knows about the one-blunder chances love." But as spoken, with written puns ignored, the French title might be rendered most simply as "L'insuccès de l'une-bévue, c'est l'amour," which means "Love is the failure of the one-blunder."
- Seminar 25 (1977-1978): Le moment de conclure (Time to conclude). Unpublished.
- Seminar 26 (1978-1979): La topologie et le temps (Topology and time). Unpublished.
- Seminar 27 (1980): Dissolution. Ornicar? 20-23.
Because Lacan was old and ill, seminar 27 was not delivered publicly but only published. It dealt with the dissolution of his school,École freudienne de Paris (Freudian School of Paris).
- Jean Delay
- École freudienne de Paris (Freudian School of Paris)
- Jacques-Marie Émile Lacan
- Maurice Merleau-Ponty
- Sainte-Anne Hospital
- École Lacanienne de psychanalyse. (1991). Le transfert dans tous ses errata and Pour une transcription critique des séminaires de Jacques Lacan. Paris: E.P.E.L.
- Miller, Jacques-Alain. (1985). Entretien sur le séminaire avec François Ansermet. Paris: Navarin.