Summary: This paper aims to discuss substance use and abuse as falling beyond the pleasure principal and the deficiencies of CBT in the treatment of substance use disorders. As we continue to ponder the beginning and ending of a pandemic, lurking close behind, is the epidemic of overdoses and substance abuse. This epidemic occurred prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, only to be exacerbated by it. Rather than viewing substance use as mere mechanical activity of our bodies in functions, what we can aim to understand better is how our repetitions and behavior express some sort of desire, wish, or fantasy. In the movie Another Round (2020), it is presented that according to Norwegian psychiatrist, Finn Skårderud, human beings are born with a blood alcohol content that is 0.05% too low. This concept would add further nuance to the terms ‘substance use,’ ‘misuse,’ and ‘abuse.’ In the Critique of Practical Reason, Kant explains the thought experiment of the Gallows Man (1998, 5:30), to convey his understanding of people’s prioritization of life over lust. He also explains that a cost-benefit analysis is not enough to prioritize life. Yet, other therapeutic modalities for substance treatment encourage the use of decisional balance worksheets and cost/benefit analyses. A psychoanalytic understanding of substance use and abuse would help unveil the desire and meaning of this activity. It is not just about controlling our brain’s biochemistry or ‘self-medicating,’ but rather, an exploration of what the substance and its use really provides for the individual. In other words, substance use, misuse, or abuse, and the language used to describe the patterns and rituals of the individual are not simply cognitive and behavioral, but more so, fantastical, emotional, and dream-like.
TILTING AT A METONYMIC PROLIFERATION OF SYMPTOMATIC WINDMILLS: THE MATTER WITH SPEECH, AND ANALOGOUS READINGS OF FREUD AND HEGEL BY WAY OF LACAN
Summary: The first section of this paper traces, in brief, a conceptual evolution of psychoanalysis from its Freudian foundation in 19th century empirical science to Lacan’s reformulation of psychoanalytic method, based in part on mid-20th century structural linguistics, as one that is not, strictly speaking, scientific. Throughout this movement, the therapeutic aim and the medium of speech remain at the center of psychoanalytic praxis. The author, therefore, explores the questions: what is speech and what is at stake for human subjects in speaking? In part two, parallels are drawn between four (ana)logical pairings of conceptual moments in Freudo-Lacanian and Hegelian theory in order to elucidate dynamic and topological intricacies in each. The Oedipus complex is described as a dialectical unfolding, wherein Hegelian and Freudian theorizing and Lacanian mythmaking are, similarly, creative retorts to contradiction and ambivalence. These subjective responses effect the Aufhebung or Verdrängung (in neurosis) of the conflictual impasse, and institute a vehicle for the transgenerational transmission of Kultur—what Hegel called Geist and Freud rendered Unbewusst.
Samenvatting: Dit artikel beoogt twee vragen op te nemen. Ten eerste: wat zegt Freud in De Droomduiding over de wens? Met andere woorden, wat is zijn definitie van een wens? Ten tweede: wat zegt Freud in De Droomduiding over de wensvervulling? In aansluiting hiermee zal de vraag van de bevrediging, en dan in het bijzonder van de behoeftebevrediging, aan de orde worden gesteld, in connectie met de conceptie van het psychisch apparaat in De Droomduiding. Cruciaal in deze bevraging is of het psychisch apparaat voor Freud, op het moment van De Droomduiding, beantwoordt aan een logica waarbij een bepaald homeostatisch evenwicht in functie van behoeftebevrediging wordt nagestreefd, dan wel aan een logica die net niet dit evenwicht tot maatstaf neemt, maar daarentegen de gedachte open zet dat het psychisch apparaat ultiem niet georganiseerd werd én functioneert vanuit een homeostatisch principe.
Summary: Getting to the heart of Freud’s Massenpsychologie, from one angle, depends on an understanding of the term ‘identification’ in Freud, precisely as, analysis of the ego. The problem is that, according to Freud, and his faithful reader, Lacan: There is no identification. Always moving between a form of unity or unification and a singular trait that is not part of whole, a complex movement and the mere appearance of unity in dreams, speech, or symptom formation, introjection of the other and projection of the ego, identification is itself the paradox of a one that psychoanalysis constantly dissolves, complicates, indeed multiplies. What problems does this pose to the psychoanalytic meta- psychological conceptual edifice, no less the very clinical practice of psychoanalysis itself? And how can we extend this to the question of hysteria and the contagion of mass psychology?
Abstract: This year marks one century from the first publication of Mass Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego by Sigmund Freud. What has been the importance of this text for social and political inquiry diachronically? What is its relevance today? It is to these two questions that this text is devoted. Attention is first given to the broader choreography between psychoanalysis and socio-political inquiry. Focus is then directed to the way populism research in particular has benefited from the ensuing re-orientation. Debates around ‘post-truth’ are also discussed within this context.