Jamieson Webster on On the Question of the Future of Psychoanalysis at NYPSI

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010, 8:30 p.m.

Jamieson Webster, Ph.D.

On the Question of the Future of Psychoanalysis
Some Reflections on Jacques Lacan

Psychoanalysis has become increasingly concerned with the question of its future. What does it mean to speculate about the future, to be anxious about it, to assess the present on the basis of anticipation of it? Jacques Lacan was someone for whom the future was a critical psychoanalytic concept. Perhaps most famously, his retranslation of Freud’s “Wo Es war, soll Ich werden” as “Where it was, there shall I become”, can give you the sense of Lacan’s desire to effect a certain kind of displacement forward.

Lacan’s theory is a modest, clinical, and conservative Freudianism whose emphasis on the future deserves reflection. I will also give a reading of how Freud dealt with this question, contrasting his 1910 paper, The Future Prospects of Psychoanalytic Therapy, and his 1919 paper, Lines of Advance in Psychoanalytic Therapy. My hope is that this will provide an opening in an apprehension that, above all else, burdens the next generation of psychoanalysts.
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