4. Setting the Scene

The Problem of the Binary Divide

  1. Nicola Diamond

Published Online: 7 APR 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118321102.ch4

Between Skins: The Body in Psychoanalysis - Contemporary Developments

Between Skins: The Body in Psychoanalysis - Contemporary Developments

How to Cite

Diamond, N. (2013) Setting the Scene, in Between Skins: The Body in Psychoanalysis - Contemporary Developments, John Wiley & Sons, Oxford. doi: 10.1002/9781118321102.ch4

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 7 APR 2013
  2. Published Print: 20 MAY 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470019429

Online ISBN: 9781118321102

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Keywords:

  • Anglo-American psychoanalytic thinking;
  • binary divisions;
  • body;
  • Lacan;
  • psychoanalysis;
  • speech

Summary

This chapter offers a brief overview of areas in mainly Anglo-American psychoanalytic thinking that have contributed to the creation of unhelpful binary divisions between body and mind. What is important about the body event as an unconscious symptom is not the sensuous nature of the body per se but the mark of speech and the act of the signifier that strikes the body (with the impact of the real in severing the symptom from meaning). Lacan, who focuses predominantly on the specular, the unseen and word/speech in defining language, was not particularly sympathetic to Merleau-Ponty's work on the body as speech, and the complex role of touch and tactility in body experience.