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4.02  ·  Rating Details ·  2,457 Ratings  ·  61 Reviews
“Fink’s precise new translation makes this pivotal period in Lacan’s thought more accessible to English speakers.”—Publishers Weekly, starred review

Brilliant and innovative, Jacques Lacan's work lies at the epicenter of modern thought about otherness, subjectivity, sexual difference, the drives, the law, and enjoyment. This new translation of his complete works offers wel
Paperback, 896 pages
Published January 8th 2007 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published 1966)
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Phenomenology of Spirit by Georg Wilhelm Friedrich HegelBeing and Time by Martin HeideggerCritique of Pure Reason by Immanuel KantThe Cantos by Ezra PoundFinnegans Wake by James Joyce
20th out of 232 books — 290 voters
How to Read Lacan by Slavoj ŽižekÉcrits by Jacques LacanWhat Lacan Said About Women by Colette SolerA Clinical Introduction to Lacanian Psychoanalysis by Bruce FinkEssays on Contemporary Events, 1936-46 by C.G. Jung
Psychoanalysis and Lacan
2nd out of 29 books — 8 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jan 30, 2013 Geoff marked it as to-read
I marked this "to-read" but that might not be an honest assessment of my intentions. So I'm creating a new shelf. "To-poke-at-with-a-stick".
Sep 26, 2007 Brendan rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: the adventurous or masochistic
Lacan isn't an easy read. If you're interested in learning about Lacan's ideas, it's probably a much better idea to start with something like Zizek's How to Read Lacan, which will give you the concepts without Lacan's sadistic writing style.

But, I find something compelling with Lacan's writing, infuriating as it is. Lacan spent a lot of time writing about the disparity between what we perceive as reality or knowledge and what is "actually" there (or, perhaps more accurately, the way language lim
May 13, 2011 Bradley rated it liked it
Don't let anyone tell you they know what the f-ck is going on in this book. Its the craziest thing of all time. And to think, he was doing therapy analyzing people's sanity when in fact, one glance at this text will reveal Lacan himself is batshit crazy, I mean like hanging from the chandelier without any pants on, out of his gourd crazy. Zizek loves this guy way too much - and I highly doubt Lacan ever slept. He apparently has read every single book in existence because he footnotes everything. ...more
Will Miller
Dec 18, 2007 Will Miller rated it it was amazing
Some dumb book by a French guy.
Jorge Silva
Jun 14, 2015 Jorge Silva rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
To summarize the discussion that Lacan sustains in these book, I would like to share this quote of his ‘Écrits’:

"Is the place that I occupy as the subject of the signifier concentric or eccentric in relation to the place I occupy as subject of the signified?” The point is not to know whether I speak of myself in a way that conforms to what I am but rather to know whether when I speak of myself, I am the same as the self of whom I speak.
Egor Sofronov
Jan 14, 2013 Egor Sofronov rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fundamental. Magisterial. Dark, gothic, highly polemical, and piercingly sardonic. Lacan is a polished stylist, his language is of the highest standard. I recommend this book to everyone - read it closely, slowly, with a pencil in hand. But first read Freud, otherwise it might be difficult
Rosa Ramôa
Jan 12, 2015 Rosa Ramôa rated it really liked it
“O desejo é a essência da realidade. “
(Jacques Lacan)
Aug 22, 2012 B.b. rated it it was amazing
Some of these reviews crack me up. This is not a book that one reads once if they are going to understand Lacanian Psychoanalytic theory. It is much better to start out with other authors such as Bruce Fink. There is quite a list of them and many are very good. Another option is to begin with the seminars. One has to realize when reading Lacan that he did not direct his writing towards the general public but toward a very specific audience, a discourse directed toward psychoanalysis.

Lacan's writ
Curt Bozif
Sep 22, 2008 Curt Bozif rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Matt Siemer
It's strange, but for me very true, that the best poetry I've ever read postures itself not as poetry but as psychoanalysis, positioned in a kind of wierd overlapped space shared by literature, science, art, history, philosophy, and pyschoanalysis - one of the first truely interdisciplinary schools of thought.
Ben Kearvell
Feb 03, 2014 Ben Kearvell rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who would extol the beauty of an alfoil helmet
Consciousness delineates unconsciousness. Understanding delineates misunderstanding. One must find oneself in Lacan's discourse, according to what one does and does not understand. I'm not sure how else to describe this book, or how it should be approached - at least in layman's terms. It's dense, it's difficult, and I wonder how much of it can be taken literally. To take Lacan 'literally' one must take the literal for granted - which is, I think, to miss the point entirely. The literal qua real ...more
Feb 11, 2008 Dennis rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Umm...okay so I didn't technically "finish" this book because no non-Lacanian psychotherapist really has ever finished this book, at least to my knowledge. It's nonetheless worth reading the few chapters I did to remember how dumb you are, or how smart you are, depending upon the outcome. And if you like someone who uses mathematical equations to explain meta-psychology, this is your book buddy!
Michael Palkowski
Sep 14, 2013 Michael Palkowski rated it it was ok
Use this book as a door stop or as an intellectual book shelf bastion that will immediately impress anyone uncritical enough to be friends with lacanian psychoanalysis
Nov 19, 2015 Leonardo marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psique
Lacan se remite a una mujer velada que lleva un falso pene oculto para sugerir que ella es un falo:

"Tal es la mujer oculta detrás de su velo: es la ausencia de pene lo que la hace falo, objeto de deseo. Evóquese esa ausencia de una manera más precisa haciéndole llevar un lindo postizo bajo un disfraz de baile, y ya se me dirá qué ocurre, o, más bien, me lo dirá ella; tendrá mucho que contar al respecto." (Pág.310)

La lógica es aquí más compleja de lo que puede parecer: no es meramente que el pen
Feb 22, 2015 Spoust1 added it
Shelves: psychoanalysis
For the Lacan students who desire the B-sides; most people will be fine without all of Lacan's papers. The only essential texts missing from the edition of the Écrits with only selections are, by my estimation, the essay on Poe and the essay on Kant and Sade.

Lacan is probably the only thinker I hold in high esteem whose writing style I very nearly despise. His style, he hoped, would train analysts in interpretation. As a reading experience, it means that Lacan meanders constantly; he often gets
Ignore the star rating for this one. I had no clue how to rate it, so I shoved it somewhere in the middle.

Not going to lie, this one hurt to read. I'm no psych major, nor am I enamored with the subject as a layperson, so... I'm not sure why I really bothered. Let's call it masochistic curiosity.

It's dense, in places not readily comprehensible, and even with a reading guide (which I had and HIGHLY suggest you have if you want to take this on), I still struggled through it. In fact, the last two
Jorge Silva
Jun 13, 2015 Jorge Silva rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
En una época en que el psicoanálisis se había convertido en "la pedagogía materna, la ayuda samaritana y la maestría dialéctica", Lacan propone un reterno a Freud:

"Ya se dé por agente de curación, de formación o de sondeo, el psicoanálisis no tiene sino un medium: la palabra del paciente. La evidencia del hecho no excusa que se le desatienda."

Estos Escritos, de una y otra forma, nos invitan a volcarnos nuevamente a escuchar la palabra del paciente.
Adam Lindberg
Apr 06, 2012 Adam Lindberg rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people interested in literary theory and/or psychoanalysis
A very good translation that presents, as much as is possible, Lacan's language play. If read solely to extract information, the book can provide some resistance and can become frustrating. I would recommend reading with (as much as is possible) an eye and ear towards appreciating the artistry in which Lacan couches his concepts. In my experience this approach makes the material both more accessible and infinitely more fun.
Mar 07, 2014 Whitney rated it it was ok
I listened to a podcast where they described Lacan's writing style well. It's as though you are trying to play a game of tic-tac-toe by describing your moves to someone who has never played the game and saying "x to right corner." I'm that person who has never played tic-tac-toe and also thinks tic-tac-toe is mostly bullshit.
Apr 18, 2012 Guanhui rated it liked it
A poetic work that marries the diverse, complex fields of Freudian psychoanalysis and linguistics. Conceptually rich and certainly of worth to developing one's critical theories. The poetic language ensures a degree of inscrutability, but I suppose complexity of thought will inevitably reflect in style.
Dec 09, 2010 Dana rated it it was amazing
Mind-blowing. If you take the time to actually wrap your mind around these concepts they can do some powerful things for how you view yourself, others, and the world.
Jacob Russell
Dec 27, 2010 Jacob Russell rated it it was amazing
I love the density his prose, how he circles round his subject nibbling away at the edges to get to the center... a kind of poetry.
Dustyn Hessie
Awesome! Awesome! Awesome! Had to take a semester off of college, decided to read some of the most difficult books possible - Thanks Lacan!
David Blanar
Oct 05, 2013 David Blanar rated it liked it
Opaque and lucid in equal parts, this is a challenging but rewarding read. Beware: not to be read idly or without guidance.
Morgan Schulman
Jan 06, 2013 Morgan Schulman rated it it was ok
It makes complete sense when you are high.
The pay-off isn't worth the effort unless you have that much spare time.
Feb 25, 2012 Raelene rated it really liked it
Difficult. But amazing. And totally worth the very intense effort required.
William West
Most challenging text I've ever taken on.
a.m. kozak
Oct 13, 2015 a.m. kozak rated it it was ok
Bases his ideas on 'facts' that are incorrect, which makes it difficult to take his conclusions seriously.
Kate Morgan
Lacan is dense. If I ever fully understand Lacan, well, then, I don't know.
Sep 10, 2014 Basab rated it really liked it
It took seven years for me to finish it. Like I learnt what I want.
Alex Obrigewitsch
Sep 02, 2015 Alex Obrigewitsch rated it really liked it
This text is difficult, as it seeks to wrap one's thinking around the traces of the unconscious that language is.
Lacan's conception of the subject and its interweaving with the other (and thus with desire and lack) is complicated but well worth the struggle.
While a basic understanding of psychoanalysis is a given here, the text yeilds offshoots that root themselves far beyond psychoanalysis and its apparent death in these most needy times; this time where we are barred, in many ways, from the su
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  • The Lacanian Subject: Between Language and Jouissance
  • Difference and Repetition
  • The Fragile Absolute: Or, Why Is the Christian Legacy Worth Fighting For?
  • Being and Event
  • Of Grammatology
  • The Psychic Life of Power: Theories in Subjection
  • The Freud Reader
  • Desire in Language: A Semiotic Approach to Literature and Art
  • The Hermeneutics of the Subject: Lectures at the Collège de France, 1981-82
  • Reading Capital
  • Libidinal Economy
Jacques-Marie-Émile Lacan was a French psychoanalyst, psychiatrist, and doctor, who made prominent contributions to the psychoanalytic movement. His yearly seminars, conducted in Paris from 1953 until his death in 1981, were a major influence in the French intellectual milieu of the 1960s and 1970s, particularly among post-structuralist thinkers.

Lacan's ideas centered on Freudian concepts such as
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“A secret to which truth has always initiated her lovers, and through which they have learned that it is in hiding that she offers herself to them most truly.” 3 likes
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