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    Psychoanalysis, politics and society: What remains radical in Psychoanalysis?

    Frosh, Stephen (2019) Psychoanalysis, politics and society: What remains radical in Psychoanalysis? In: Gipps, R. and Lacewing, M. (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Psychoanalysis. International Perspectives in Philosophy and Psychiatry. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780198789703.

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    This chapter explores the way in which psychoanalysis has engaged with political activity since its inception. It deals first with Freud’s ‘social theory’ and his commitment to a mode of social democratic practice that was partly manifested in the free psychoanalytic clinics in Berlin, Vienna and elsewhere in the 1920s and 1930s. The promise and limitations of the psychoanalytic radicalism of the time gave way after the Second World War to the more normative practices of ego-psychological and object relations work. From the 1960s onwards, however, there has been a return to various politically active strands in psychoanalytic thought – for example in certain uses of Lacan; in the profound challenge to psychoanalysis that came from feminism; and in more recent critiques and uses of psychoanalysis by queer and postcolonial theory. On the other hand, psychoanalysis as a practice remains quite conservative and at times (for instance in Latin America during the dictatorships of the late twentieth century) there has been collusion between psychoanalytic institutions and oppressive social regimes. In the context of this volume’s interest in philosophy and psychoanalysis, this chapter tries to tease out the strands of political radicalism that can be found in psychoanalysis’ fundamental assumptions.


    Item Type: Book Section
    Additional Information: Reproduced by permission of Oxford University Press
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): psychoanalysis, philosophy, politics
    School: School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > Psychosocial Studies
    Research Centres and Institutes: Mapping Maternal Subjectivities, Identities and Ethics (MAMSIE)
    Depositing User: Stephen Frosh
    Date Deposited: 29 May 2019 06:11
    Last Modified: 13 Jun 2021 14:24


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