Écrits
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Écrits

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4.03 of 5 stars 4.03  ·  rating details  ·  1,550 ratings  ·  52 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...more
Paperback, 878 pages
Published January 8th 2007 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published 1966)
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Brendan
Sep 26, 2007 Brendan rated it 4 of 5 stars
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...more
Will Miller
Some dumb book by a French guy.
Geoff
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".
Bradley
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
B.b.
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...more
Curt Bozif
Sep 22, 2008 Curt Bozif rated it 5 of 5 stars
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.
Egor Sofronov
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
Katinki
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...more
Ben Kearvell
Feb 03, 2014 Ben Kearvell rated it 4 of 5 stars
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
Dennis
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!
Scroutch
I really like Lacan. He's not such a difficult writer, really. I mean, sometimes, yes. Especially when he's writing about the internal politics of the French psychoanalytic schools, but that stuff doesn't really matter anyway. The point is, he's terribly smart, and he's a real funny guy to boot. Seriously.
Guanhui
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.
Dana
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
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!
and
Lacan haunts me. He is worse than any drug you will ever take, because the more you read the more you get sucked in. Life changing shit.
David Blanar
Opaque and lucid in equal parts, this is a challenging but rewarding read. Beware: not to be read idly or without guidance.
Morgan
It makes complete sense when you are high.
The pay-off isn't worth the effort unless you have that much spare time.
Raelene
Difficult. But amazing. And totally worth the very intense effort required.
Kevin
Jul 22, 2014 Kevin is currently reading it
I have this on my "currently reading" list, but I am not currently reading it actively. But I have read large chunks of it, and will eventually read the other chunks. I've also been reading his transcribed seminars, but in no particular order. I am a sometime member of a "Lacan Salon" that meets weekly here in Vancouver. I tend to read Lacan a lot more diligently when I am attending those meetings.
I love Lacan's work - it has opened so many doors - literal, metaphorical, metonymic - for me and i...more
Whitney
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.
Adam Lindberg
Apr 06, 2012 Adam Lindberg rated it 4 of 5 stars
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.
Chelsea Szendi
I often love what people do with Lacan, and would have had an even tougher time going with Laclau and Mouffe without at least a passing knowledge of his work. However, to borrow Lacan's own metaphor that writing is like forcing a reader to pass through a specific system (like a digestive system), reading Lacan often makes me feel like shit.

Very demanding. I missed a flight reading this in the waiting area.
Nyx

I'm a psychology student in a psychoanalytic oriented university, so there's no way for me to scape this guy.
His classes are not easy to understand: He talks about optical illusions and throws around words in German while reinventing Freud's theory.
Would I recommend it to others? Clearly it's too late for me, but you can still save yourself! (unless you are a psychoanalyst)
lucke1984
Mar 31, 2007 lucke1984 rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: i don't know
I admit I haven't finshised this, I hope to but I may not. Despite not having completed the book I find that he is often at the fore of my thoughts when I write about or think about literature. For good or for bad , most of thoughts are filtered by my understanding (correct or otherwise) of Lacan. I sometimes feel anxious about the influence but...
SolitarySocialist
1) I didn't understand it all.
2) The copy I read was 'A Selection' rather than the complete text.
3) I'll return to it again one day.

Moving on from those 3 points I wish to state that the book itself is pretty fascinating for those interested in psychoanalysis and it's written by Lacan for those who are.
Michael Palkowski
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
Lindsay
Wow!

If you ever though you knew anything about theory you were wrong. Check this book out from your local library before you purchase it though--pretty amazing!
Megan
Feb 11, 2009 Megan rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: masochists
i read "the instance of the letter" and "the signification of the phallus." not that i understood anything, but i had dreams about it, so that's something....
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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...more
More about Jacques Lacan...
Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis: The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis (Seminar of Jacques Lacan) On Feminine Sexuality, the Limits of Love and Knowledge: The Seminar of Jacques Lacan, Book XX: Encore The Ethics of Psychoanalysis 1959-1960 (Seminar of Jacques Lacan) Écrits: A Selection The Seminar of Jacques Lacan: Freud's Papers on Technique

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