The Neurotic’s Individual Myth : (Collège de Philosophique, Paris) : 4th March 1953 : Jacques Lacan

by Julia Evans on March 4, 1953

Part of Jacques Lacan’s Seminar on the ‘Rat Man’ – 1952 to 1953. He gave this paper to the Collège de Philosophique, Paris, at the invitation of Jean Wahl  on 4th March 1953


Lacan’s main ambition during the 1950s consisted in the recovery of the roots of psychoanalysis, in order to tailor its contemporary practice to the sphere of the subject. This ambition was initially realized through a detailed re-reading of Freud’s case-studies and his papers on technique (See Seminar I: Freud’s papers on technique: 1953-1954 : begins on 18th November 1953 : Jacques Lacan or here)

Between 1950 and 1953, Lacan conducted seminars on Freud’s case-studies of Dora (Freud : 1901). The Wolf Man (Freud :1914) and the Rat Man (Freud :  1909) at his house in Paris, the text of which remains unpublished except for a small excerpt from the Wolf Man seminar originally published in Italian (Lacan 1951- 1952 : Seminario su “L’uomo dei lupi” : translated by Alberto Turolla : La psicoanalisi : Vol 6 : 1989 : p9 – 12 : Available here : Published by Lacan’s seminar on Dora did provide the backdrop for his 1951 paper ‘Intervention on Transference’ (See Intervention on the Transference (Paris): October 16th 1951: Jacques Lacan or here), and his seminar on the Rat Man informed his 1953 text ‘The Neurotic’s Individual Myth’ : Adapted from p1 & 5 of Jacques Lacan and the Freudian Practice of Psychoanalysis : 2000 : by Dany Nobus : Routledge

Availability in English

Translated by Martha Noel Evans

Published The Psychoanalytic Quarterly : Vol 48(3) : p405-425 : 1979

Available at   /lacan    


See Richard G. Klein’s website,, Available here

For Commentary see below

Availability in French

1) Text edited by Jacques-Alain Miller. The French text appeared in Issue No. 17 of Ornicar? Periodical Bulletin of the Champ Freudien. : 1979 : p289 – 307

2) Published at : Le mythe individuel du névrosé ou poésie et vérité dans la névrose (version transcription) (14 p.) : Available here


Introduction to Jacques Lacan’s Lecture: The Neurotic’s Individual Myth, by the translator, Martha Noel Evans, Ph.D. : 1979 : Psychoanalytic Quarterly, Vol 48 : p386-404 – See Richard G. Klein’s website,, available here

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Julia Evans

Practicing Lacanian Psychoanalyst in London & Sandwich, Kent


Further posts:

Lacanian Transmission here

Some Lacanian history here

Of the clinic here

Topology here

By Sigmund Freud here

Notes on texts by Sigmund Freud here

By Jacques Lacan here

Notes on texts by Jacques Lacan here

Jacques Lacan in English or here

Translation Working Group here

Use of power here

By Julia Evans here