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A Portrait Of The Analyst As A Crucial Problem

The Letter, Issue 9, Spring 1997, Pages 73 - 83


Guy Le Gaufey

We do not pay enough attention to the fact that the unconscious was not discovered alone, and that something else saw the light at approximately the same time, I mean: the psychoanalyst as such, as he appears in the sheer movement of transference. We regularly lean to those last years of the previous century as to a cradle into which, in the shape of a certain Dr. Freud, a sort of psychoanalytical Adam emerged. We admire the feat through which Freud gave birth to a new kind of being, and we comment untiringly on the old story of the dawn of psychoanalysis.

I would prefer to consider each of these - the unconscious and the psychoanalyst - as a pair, from their very beginning right up to today and even, while I am at it, for the foreseeable future. During the first half of this century, the psychoanalyst was not the main problem; at first he was simply someone deeply interested in the new field of the Freudian unconscious; then, on top of that, he became someone having experienced, more or less, a psychoanalytical treatment; but he has become something else too, through Lacan's teaching; a sort of product, or shadow, or scrap of the unconscious.

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