304 pages, 108x175mm, 250g
Cover: 270gsm laminated cover
Interior: 115gsm matte white text
Digitally printed (POD), 1/1 body, 4/0 cover, no illustrations, perfectbound
2011, Toronto [Canada]
Dr. Lacan’s writings, and especially the seminars for which he has become famous, have provoked intense controversies in French analytic circles, requiring as they do a radical reappraisal of the legacy bequeathed by Freud. The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psycho-Analysis is based on a year’s seminar, which is of particular importance because he was addressing a larger, less specialized audience than ever before, among whom he could not assume familiarity with his work. For his listeners then, and for his readers now, he wanted “to introduce a certain coherence into the major concepts on which psycho-analysis is based,” namely, the unconscious, repetition, the transference, and the drive.
This particular seminar, in this particular edition, has often been used as the basic text for Anglo-American scholars and students alike seduced by the possibilities inherent in Lacanian psycho-analysis. In particular, notions of the gaze and ruminations on the role of subjectivity in two-dimensional representations have been adopted wholesale by spheres of film studies, art history, and visual studies. By default, Alan Sheridan, through this translation, has been key in the reception of Lacan in the Anglo-American academy. Alas, particularly for visual studies, a key phrase in this edition differs significantly from the French edition. An internet search proves that both versions of this phrase have been quoted equally in North American scholarly writings.
While arguments could be made as to the apt-ness of continuing to use Sheridan’s translation as it exists – and we at Parasitic Ventures Press considered the possibility of presenting one such – we offer, instead, this edition, an Erratum of The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psycho-Analysis, to allow our readers to decide for themselves.
Download a digital version of the book here.