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Jacques Lacan Quotes

Jacques Lacan was born on 13 April 1901 into a conservative and Christian family. He studies Latin, Greek and was interested in philosophy. At the age of 14, he discovered Spinoza, Hegel and Nietzsche and other philosophers. He studied medicine in Paris and defended his PhD thesis. At thirty-five he became a psychoanalyst.

He became a member of the Paris Psychoanalytic Society (SPP) and developed his famous theory on the “Stage of the mirror“. At the start of its development, Lacan suggested that the mirror stage was part of an infant’s development from 6 to 18 months.  But later in the 1950s, he would go on to modify this view and proposed that the Mirror State presented a permanent structure of subjectivity, or as the paradigm of “Imaginary order”. He introduced the three concepts which will become fundamental in his work: Real, Symbolic and Imaginary.

Jacques Lacan wrote and lectured mainly on his theories. He would use and rely on structuralism and linguistics and would share the thoughts of Ferdinand de Saussure, Claude Lévi-Strauss and Roman Jakobson. His methods created controversy and he resigned from the Psychoanalytical Society of Paris in 1953. He later founded his own school: the Freudian School of Psychoanalysis (EFP). His seminal work – Ecrits – deal with the modern thought about otherness, subjectivity, language and sexual difference, bringing him new success.

Lacan was the re-inventor of the Freudian school of thoughts and today his theories are widely read and discussed.  Together with Foucault, Derrida and Roland Barthes, Lacan’s writings are compulsory in critical theory reading. Jacques Lacan is quoted almost every day: Whether it is about finding a way to explain our shopping attitude or to deal with our behavior in society, Jacques Lacan quotes will give you an insight into the world of psychoanalysis.

 


 

Writings scatter to the winds blank checks in an insane charge. And were they not such flying leaves, there would be no purloined letters.

Jacques Lacan

The knowledge that there is a part of the psychic functions that are out of conscious reach, we did not need to wait for Freud to know this!

Jacques Lacan

Yet, analytical truth is not as mysterious, or as secret, so as to not allow us to see that people with a talent for directing consciences see truth rise spontaneously.

Jacques Lacan

Since Freud, the center of man is not where we thought it was; one has to go on from there.

Jacques Lacan

The narration, in fact, doubles the drama with a commentary without which no mise en scene would be possible.

Jacques Lacan

We emphasize that such a form of communication is not absent in man, however evanescent a naturally given object may be for him, split as it is in its submission to symbols.

Jacques Lacan

What could be more convincing, moreover, than the gesture of laying one’s cards face up on the table?

Jacques Lacan

Which is why we cannot say of the purloined letter that, like other objects, it must be or not be in a particular place but that unlike them it will be and not be where it is, wherever it goes.

Jacques Lacan

Symptoms, those you believe you recognize, seem to you irrational because you take them in an isolated manner, and you want to interpret them directly.

Jacques Lacan

What does it matter how many lovers you have if none of them gives you the universe?

Jacques Lacan

The Mirror Stage as formative in the function of the I as revealed in psychoanalytic experience.

Jacques Lacan

A geometry implies the heterogeneity of locus, namely that there is a locus of the Other. Regarding this locus of the Other, of one sex as Other, as absolute Other, what does the most recent development in topology allow us to posit?

Jacques Lacan

In other words, the man who is born into existence deals first with language; this is a given. He is even caught in it before his birth.

Jacques Lacan

Psychoanalysis is a terribly efficient instrument, and because it is more and more a prestigious instrument, we run the risk of using it with a purpose for which it was not made for, and in this way we may degrade it.

Jacques Lacan

Obsessional does not necessarily mean sexual obsession, not even obsession for this, or for that in particular; to be an obsessional means to find oneself caught in a mechanism, in a trap increasingly demanding and endless.

Jacques Lacan

For the signifier is a unit in its very uniqueness, being by nature symbol only of an absence.

Jacques Lacan

But this emphasis would be lavished in vain, if it served, in your opinion, only to abstract a general type from phenomena whose particularity in our work would remain the essential thing for you, and whose original arrangement could be broken up only artificially.

Jacques Lacan

As is known, it is in the realm of experience inaugurated by psychoanalysis that we may grasp along what imaginary lines the human organism, in the most intimate recesses of its being, manifests its capture in a symbolic dimension.

Jacques Lacan

Aside from that reservation, a fictive tale even has the advantage of manifesting symbolic necessity more purely to the extent that we may believe its conception arbitrary.

Jacques Lacan

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