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Christian Fierens – Foreclosure and Discordance: Is Schizophrenia Thinkable?


Issue 40 (Spring 2009) Pages-59-67


This article argues that schizophrenia, as the illness o f the psychical system in its generality, can only be approached by posing the preliminary question: ‘‘what is association?”. I f one thinks in terms o f a logic o f the “excluded third”, schizophrenia seems to be excluded from the field of psychoanalysis. But the author maintains that thinking in terms o f a logic of the “included third” is not only coherent with psychoanalysis, but results in what is said schizophrenically supporting the discourse o f the analyst.


In his major work Dementia Praecox or the Group o f Schizophrenias (1911),1 Eugen Bleuler replaces “dementia praecox” with the group of“schizophrenias”. The main characteristic of the illness in question would no longer be either dementia or precociousness, but a splitting of the mind or a disturbance of associations. The invention of the term “schizophrenia” does much more, however, than rename a specific mental illness, for Bleuler speaks about the “group” of “schizophrenias” in the plural. ……

Foreclosure and Discordance: Is Schizophrenia Thinkable?

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