Subject and Agency in Psychoanalysis

Subject and Agency in Psychoanalysis : Which Is to Be Master?

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Psychoanalysis works with words, words spoken by a subject who asks that the analyst listen. This is the belief that underlies Francis Moran's rewarding exploration of a central problem in psychoanalytic theory namely, the separation of the concepts of subject and agency.

Subject and Agency in Psychoanalysis contends that Freud simultaneously employs two frameworks for explaining agency-- one clinical and one theoretical. As a result, Freud's exploration of agency proceeds from two logically incompatible assumptions. The division between these assumptions is a part of Freud's psychoanalytic legacy.

Moran reads the Freudian inheritance in light of this division, showing how Klein and Hartmann's theoretical concepts of subject are adrift from the subject who speaks in analysis. Moran also shows that while Lacan's subject provides more focus on this issue, Lacan reverts to the Freudian division in his use of logically contradictory assumptions concerning the location of agency.

Drawing on contemporary theory development, from Lacanian innovations to the social theories of Anthony Giddens, Moran proposes a new and fertile approach to a fundamental problem, significantly narrowing the gap between psychoanalytic theory and practice.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 216 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 16mm | 458.13g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0814754821
  • 9780814754825

Review quote

""Benevolent Repression" fills a maor gap in our histories of U.S. prisons--disregard for the network of men's reformatories. It seems incredible that, until now, historians neglected such a large and influential branch of the prison system. Pisciotta more than makes up for the lapse, however, with this informative and valuable study."-Nicole Rafter, author of "Partial Justice: Women, Prisons and Social Control" "Pisciotta's study is a major contribution to the history of crime and punishment in America. His extensive research on the origins and development of reformatories challenges the accepted interpretation that these institutions had a reformative influence on the corrections system. This work sets the stage for a revised understanding of the institutionalization movement in uvenile corrections."-John A. Conley, Professor and Chair of Criminal Justice, State University College at Buffalo "Provocative and insightful. . . . With the publication of this excellent work, Pisciotta has established himself as one of the most important of the prison historians to whom we should listen in the future." -"The Criminologist",
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About Frances Moran

Frances Moran is in private practice in Melbourne, Australia.
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