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Lacan, Jacques

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Definition: Lacan ( noun) Jacques (1901 - 1981) from

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French psychoanalyst, who reinterpreted Freud in terms of structural linguistics: an important influence on structuralist thought.

Summary Article: Jacques Lacan from Great Thinkers A-Z
At least since Descartes in the seventeenth century, thinkers in the West had found it possible to doubt the existence of God, the nature of morality, or even the efficacy of science. But the belief that they themselves constitute unique, indivisible and autonomous persons did not come under sustained attack until Nietzsche and Freud in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Jacques-Marie-Emile Lacan in the late twentieth strove to eradicate it completely. Lacan called his own decades-long project a ‘return to Freud’ and at the end of his life, he exclaimed to French psychoanalysts, ‘It is up to you to be Lacanians if you wish; I am Freudian.’ Though he studied first medicine, then psychiatry, Lacan's influences are hardly orthodox Freudian. Like many French intellectuals who would become famous in the post-war period, Lacan also closely read...    Continue Reading

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