The Evolution of Lacan’s the Name-of-the-Father

Over the past six months, I have participated as a member of the DC Lacanian Forum, an affiliate of the International of the Forums of the Lacanian Field (IF-SPFLF) based in Paris. We meet every first Wednesday of the month to present a case study or a major concept in Lacan’s work. The forum is made up of Lacanian-influenced analysts, students, and people in training to become analysts. While I am not an analyst, and come at Lacan from the perspective of philosophy and theory, I have been warmly received by this group.

This Wednesday, I will be presenting on Lacan’s concept the Name-of-the-Father. The Name of the Father is an incredibly vast and important concept in Lacan’s teaching. Due to the difficulty and the immensity of the concept, I have my work cut out for me, so I have decided to approach the concept from two angles: the way that the Name-of-the-Father intersects with the three-part Oedipal dialectic developed in Seminar V, and how the transition from the Name to the Names applies to clinical settings.

If you are interested in participating via Skype, please email me and I will make arrangements to have you included. The talk will occur live from our usual meeting place, 4100 Nebraska Ave. NW Washington, DC at 8 pm EST.

Daniel Tutt feb 14_Page_1

Key sections of the presentation:

Schreber, Hölderlin and the Foreclosure of the Primordial Signifier: We will begin with a reading of Seminar III on the Psychoses and compare the foreclosure of the paternal signifier for President Schreber and the German poet Hölderlin.

The Non-Existent Seminar 1963 – 1964: From the Name to the Names of the Father: a reading of the Non-Existent Seminar on the Name-of-the-Father and its relation to the transition in the concept towards the matheme.

The Three-Part Oedipal Movement: on the difference between Freud and Lacan on Oedipus and a reading of Seminar IV and V on the three-part Oedipal movement and its modification to Names-of-the-Father becoming the fourth part of the dialectic in his late work after Seminar XXII.

Understanding the Father Function in a Clinical Setting: lessons from the entirety of Lacan’s teachings on the father for contemporary clinical concerns: borderline symptoms, postmodern changes to paternal authority, the placement of the mother in postmodern culture, and the meaning of Oedipus being unusable for analysts as Lacan claims in Seminar 18.

Late Lacan: The Name of the Father as Sinthome: The late Lacan will reverse the Name-of-the-Father to the Father-as-Named: it is the difference here in Frege’s logic of naming between a proper name and a common noun. The Father-as-Name is what nominates a thing that already exists. The father is what is related to the fourth ring in the Borromean chain, the sinthome.

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