Listen to the episode. What can philosophy get out of literary criticism? We've had some past episodes like this and this where we discussed some philosophical issues brought up by a piece of fiction, but that's different then the act of doing philosophy through literary criticism, which is supposed to reveal something about our relationship to language, to ideas, to culture. The tradition of criticism coming from Jacques Lacan and Jacques Derrida and this is not to minimize the differences between them considers not just how an author creates an effect or what themes he or she is trying to convey, but the relationship of a text or other creative work to the human psyche.

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Jacques Lacan. Preliminary Analytic Principles. The Meaning of the Signifier. Symbolic, Imaginary, Real. Two diagonals intersect:. The imaginary rapport links a the ego to a' the other ;. The line going from A the Other to S the subject, the Freudian id is interrupted by the first one. The Other is the place of language where subjectivity is constituted; it is the place of primal speech linked to the Father; it is the place of the absolute Other, the mother in the demand.

The Other makes the subject without him knowing it. Lacan regards the Es as the subject. At the end of analysis, it is It who must be called on to speak, and to enter in relation with real Others. Where S was, there the Ich ego should be. Jouissance and the Borromean Knot. Chain of meaning; unity of the One; jouissance and the real.

Any break in one of the rings means that the other rings will fall off: indicates psychosis. The Seminar. With Critical Theory in general, but with Lacan in particular, we learn to read according to structural relations and substitutions and not according merely to content.

The text signifies something other than itself but nothing constrains its referent absolutely. The two scenes. The jouissance of the It is expelled from the experience of the ego.

The Subject is inhabited by the Signifier. The irrelevance of the content of the letter. The letter circulates as in a postal system. The addressee and addressor the structure of the letter. The letter as an object in the story. The story as an object. Literature and Psychoanalysis: meaning sens and un-readability. Scene C. Two diagonals intersect: The imaginary rapport links a the ego to a' the other ; The line going from A the Other to S the subject, the Freudian id is interrupted by the first one.


Poe’s “Purloined Letter” and Lacanian Psychoanalytical Criticism – 2

In general, Lacan sees this story as revolving around problems of signification, meaning, received opinion and truth. How does this displacement of series take place? As Lacan reminds us, the letter itself is a character. At the same time, it is the presence-absence that allows the series to be composed as such around which the King, Queen, Minister and Dupin revolve. If the signifier has priority over the signified 20 this is due to the fact that Lacan believes that the signifier is what represents the subject for another signifier. These chains come to symbolically structure the intersubjective relations among subjects by definition because the same master signifier the letter dominates both chains. Lacan uses the phrase symbolic formula because of the strict correlation between the displacements in the series.


Topic for #75: Lacan & Derrida on Literary Criticism: Poe’s “The Purloined Letter”

At his point, the function of the letter in the story is to simply position people. Jacques Lacan , in his analysis considers this structure as triangular one. In these two scenes, there are three available positions in relation to the other. The letter locates different people according to their relations to the letter. Signifier is a threat to the system. Queen knows that if she puts the letter full-view on table, King would not notice it and be curious. In his seminar, Lacan tells this story, the myth about ostriches.


The Purloined Letter

It is the third of the three stories featuring the detective Auguste Dupin ; these stories are considered to be important early forefunners of the modern detective story. It first appeared in The Gift for and was soon reprinted in numerous journals and newspapers. An unnamed narrator is meeting with the famous Parisian amateur detective Auguste Dupin , and discussing some of his most celebrated cases, when they are joined by the Prefect of the Police, a man known only as G-. The Prefect has a case he would like to discuss with M.


Lacan and the Formula of the “Purloined Letter”

Jacques Lacan Und wenn es uns gluckt, Und wenn es sich schickt, So sind es Gedanken. Our inquiry has led us to the point of recognizing that the repetition automatism Wiederholangszwang finds its basis in what we have called the insistence of the signifying chain. We have elaborated that notion itself as a correlate of the ex-sistence or: eccentric place in which we must necessarily locate the subject of the unconscious if we are to take Freud's discovery seriously. 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. The lesson of this seminar is intended to maintain that these imaginary incidences, far from representing the essence of our experience, reveal only what in it remains inconsistent unless they are related to the symbolic chain which binds and orients them. 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.

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