Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To use the Information icon…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

The Information icon (an i in a circle) will give you valuable information about PEP Web data and features. You can find it besides a PEP Web feature and the author’s name in every journal article. Simply move the mouse pointer over the icon and click on it for the information to appear.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Minerbo, M. (1997). The perversion of ethics. Free Associations, 7(2):171-179.

(1997). Free Associations, 7(2):171-179

The perversion of ethics

Marion Minerbo

Freud Opens His Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality with a chapter dedicated to sexual aberrations. In this and other papers, he presents possible deviations, sexual objects and sexual objectives to show that sexuality, although anchored in the biological, is also a cultural acquisition. Since then, psychoanalysis has been concerned with psychosexuality.

The statement that the sexual object is not given, but built up in the field of intersubjectivity, if taken to its ultimate consequences, still creates an impact today, because we are led to recognize that it is not only the sexual deviant who constructs the object of his or her desire: all of us do so. In fact, if sexual is defined as deviation, as a perversion in relation to the biological, then we are all deviants. Each one of us creates his or her own world. For example, it is not hard to observe that the world in which the phobic moves is very different from that of the obsessive. They are different realities. In this sense, the object of the drive will always and necessarily be unique to each in the function of the specificity of his or her desire.

The most important teaching from the study of perversion, then, is that reality is built up by desire in all cases, and not only in perversion.

The theme has been explored in this double perspective. The study of the unconscious of perversion, that is, of its metapsychology, cannot be dissociated from the type of reality that is produced by this unconscious. This is because the disavowal of castration is a psychic mechanism that touches on an outside reality - the cultural order - and not on the reality of the subject's fantasy life. The cultural order is built upon the prohibition against incest, through the threat of castration, that is, through law, and is a sphere disavowed by perversion.


[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2019, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.