Interpreting Psychosis from Day to Day : October 2005 : Éric Laurent

by Julia Evans on October 1, 2005


Originally published in Mental : Issue 16 : October 2005 : p9-24

Translated by Adrian Price & Bogdan Wolf

p83-97 of Bulletin of the New Lacanian School, nr 4, ‘The body and its objects, Lacanian Interpretation’, 2008

Available at /éric laurent  

References & their availability


The Direction of the Treatment and the Principles of its Power:10th-13th July 1958 : Jacques Lacan : see here : p491 of Bruce Fink’s translation : p3 of Cormac Gallagher’s translation : In other words always free in the timing, frequency and choice of my interventions, to the point that it seems that the rule has been arranged entirely so as not to impede in any way my own freedom of execution. The aspect of  ‘material‘ is correlative to this, and it is from its angle that my action deals with what it has produced.

Ibid. p491 of Bruce Fink’s translation : p11 of Cormac Gallagher’s translation : 4. I will spare myself the task of giving the rules of interpretation. It is not that they cannot be formulated, but their formulae presuppose developments that I cannot presume to be known, and it would be impossible to provide a condensed account of them here.


The therapeutic effect of inexact interpretation : a contribution to the theory of suggestion : October 1931 : Edward Glover : See here


The Direction of the Treatment : July 1958 : op. cit., : p.502 of Bruce Fink’s translation : p18 of Cormac Gallagher’s translation.

The original case of ‘fresh brains’ : Intellectual Inhibition & Disturbances in Eating (Dream ‘fresh brains’) : September 1933 [Published1938] : Melitta Schmideberg or here

Other commentaries by Jacques Lacan :

Jacques Lacan comments Dream ‘fresh brains’ in Seminars I, III, VI & X and Function and Field of Speech and Language in Psychoanalysis : 26th & 27th September 1953 & Direction of the Treatment : 10th to 13th July 1958 : See here

& also

Ego psychology and interpretation in psychoanalytic therapies (Dream ‘fresh brains’) : December 1948 (New York) [1951] : Ernst Kris or here


The Direction of the Treatment : July 1958 : op. cit. : “it makes something heard” : p7 of Cormac Gallagher’s translation : heard as coming from the Other of the transference

The Function and Field of Speech and Language in Psychoanalysis (Rome) : 26th September 1953 : Jacques Lacan  : See here : ‘Lacan situated interpretation far away from a metalanguage. It is a dimension of speech in which speech and language are knotted together in a special way’ : P16 of Anthony Wilden’s translation is a possibility! : that to obsessional intrasubjectivity is to be opposed hysterical intersubjectivity; and that to the analysis of resistance is to be opposed symbolic interpretation

‘Lacan reformulates his fundamental thesis in the form: “desire is its interpretation”’ : See Seminar VI: Desire and its interpretation: 1958-1959 : from 12th November 1958 : Jacques Lacan or here


‘The analyst is part of the concept of the unconscious’ : Seminar XI: The Four Fundamental Concepts: 1963-1964 : beginning 15th January 1964 : Jacques Lacan or here : p125 of Alan Sheridan’s translation : Seminar XI, 15thApril 1964 : The presence of the analyst is itself a manifestation of the unconscious, so that when it is manifested nowadays in certain encounters, as a refusal of the unconscious—this is a tendency, readily admitted, in some people’s thinking—this very fact must be integrated into the concept of the unconscious.

The Direction of the Treatment : July 1958 : op. cit. : p9 of Cormac Gallagher’s translation : ‘To decipher the diachrony of unconscious repetitions, interpretation must introduce into the synchrony of the signifiers that compose it, something that suddenly makes translation possible – precisely what the function of the Other as harbouring the code allows, since it is in connection with it that the missing element appears.’ : p495-496 of Bruce Fink’s translation


‘In Letter 52 to Fliess, Freud speaks of discreeet elements that under go translation from epoch to epoch’ : See Letter from Sigmund Freud to Wilhelm Fliess: 6th December 1896 : Known as Letter 52 or here


‘out in the open’ : p59 of Russell Grigg’s translation : Seminar III, 14thDecember 1955 : See Seminar III: The Psychoses: 1955-1956: from 16th November 1955: Jacques Lacan or here


‘a proper name is an extraordinary signifier where the signifier and the signified balance out and become stabilised. : See The Subversion of the Subject and the Dialectic of Desire (Royaumont): 19th to 23rd September 1960: Jacques Lacan or here  : p310 of Alan Sheridan’s translation : As such it is inexpressible, but its operation is not inexpressible, for it is that which is produced whenever a proper noun is spoken. Its statement equals its signification. : p694 of Bruce Fink’s translation.

Interpretation in reverse : 1966 : Jacques-Alain Miller : Published by the London Society of the New Lacanian School/ Library : Available to download here


As above


See Seminar XV : The Psychoanalytic Act : 1967-1968 : begins 15th November 1967 : Jacques Lacan or here : Seminar XV, 27thMarch 1968 : pXV 17 of Cormac Gallagher’s translation : ‘Namely, I will not say the apologue because I never give apologues, I show you the reality of what is involved for the analyst imaged in other examples. It is not astonishing that these are examples taken from art, for example, something to take one’s bearings from. Namely, in order to have a different kind of knowledge than this kind of fictional knowledge he has and which paralyses him, when he questions a case, when he carries out the anamnesis, when he prepares it, when he begins to approach it and once he enters it with the analysis, that he searches in the case, in the history of the subject, like Velasquez in the picture of ‘Las Meninas’ [See], where he, for his part was already the analyst at a particular moment and at a particular point of the history of the subject.

This will have one advantage. He will know what is involved in the transference. The centre, the pivot of transference, does not pass at all through his person. There is something that was already there.’

‘Proposal of 9th October 1967 
on the psychoanalyst of the School’: Jacques Lacan or here  : “already there” before as the “signifier of transference” :  p.5-6 of Russell Grigg’s translation : p6 & p7 (I think! ) of Cormac Gallagher’s translation.


Note : If links to any required text do not work, check If a particular text or book remains absent, contact Julia Evans


Julia Evans

Practicing Lacanian Psychoanalyst, London


Further posts:

Some Lacanian history here

Lacanian Transmission here 

Of the clinic here 

Ordinary Psychosis here 

Translation Working Group here 

 From LW working groups here

Use of power here 

By Éric Laurent here

By Sigmund Freud here

Notes on texts by Sigmund Freud : here

By Jacques Lacan here

By Julia Evans here  

Notes on texts by Jacques Lacan here