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Christian Fierens visits Melbourne - August 2019

Inventing Psychoanalysis, Without Falling Back on its Standards or its A Priori Notions

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After a fruitful exchange in 2015, the School has this year invited Christian Fierens to return to offer a series of public lectures and to work intensively with members. Christian is a psychoanalyst who has practised for more than 30 years in Tervuren near Brussels, in Belgium. He also trained as a psychiatrist and completed his PhD on the question of psychosis in Freud’s work. Christian has published many books and articles on Freudian and Lacanian psychoanalysis.

This is Christian’s second visit to Australia to work with the Freudian School.


Program of Events: 8th - 14th August, 2019

Book Launch

Thursday 8th August: 6:30pm | Readings Bookshop - 309 Lygon Street, Carlton

Launch of Christian Fierens’ recently published book The Soul of Narcissism (Routledge, 2019)

The notion of narcissism introduced by Sigmund Freud has become a victim of its own success. On the one hand, with its emphasis on self-love and the new forms of well-being, it can take the form of a celebration of self. On the other, it has given rise to a burgeoning field of narcissistic pathologies.

The Soul of Narcissism argues that both perspectives represent impoverished and superfluous forms of narcissism, obscuring the vibrant notion that Freud put in place in order to question the very heart of psychoanalytic practice. This reinvigorated notion of narcissism will be of interest not just to students and practitioners of psychoanalysis, but also to all those who draw upon Freud’s study of narcissism.

Reality and Truth

Friday 9th August: 8:00-9:30pm | Room 420.1.46B Australian Catholic University - 115 Victoria Pde, Fitzroy

As reality must be radically put into question, we do not have access to the whole truth: not just to the half-said of truth, but also to the half-saying of truth. In the saying there is no overriding position. In other words the different ways of “holding as true”, are such only insofar as we are able to change position in discourse.

I Sexuality and Narcissism

Saturday 10th August: 1:00-4:30pm | Room 420.1.46B Australian Catholic University - 115 Victoria Pde, Fitzroy

This talk will set out from Fierens’ book, The Soul of Narcissism. Narcissism is the general reservoir for all libido. We must start out from there, since it is the reason for our interest in anything in the world. What is particular to the psychoanalytic method is that it reanimates this infantile sexuality in the transference.

II Symptom and Sinthome

Saturday 10th August: 1:00-4:30pm | Room 420.1.46B Australian Catholic University - 115 Victoria Pde, Fitzroy

The Freudian symptom appears to be a given which confronts the analyst. But it is a question of taking into consideration the formation of the symptom in order to be able to introduce topology, and from there to lead to the path of the construction of the “sinthome” in the analysis. This talk will take up notions from Fierens’ book Reading of the Sinthome, and the practice of psychoanalysis from the singular, from the exception.

Enjoyment and Sexual Disorientation

Wednesday 14th August: 8:00-9:30pm | Room 420.1.46B Australian Catholic University - 115 Victoria Pde, Fitzroy

This talk will take up the question of jouissance, as outlined by Fierens’ reading of Kant’s Critique of Practical Reason and of Lacan’s Kant with Sade. Jouissance is most often perceived as an immoderate and uncontrolled pleasure. It is necessary to introduce a “jouissance principle”, in other words, a principle beyond the pleasure principle, which corresponds to the functioning of the unconscious itself - which absolutely does not think, does not calculate, dos not judge. It is, rather, a principle of creation that supposes that there is not a given sexual orientation, but on the contrary, that it is necessary to construct sexuality without any preliminary standards or a priori notions.



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