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Grosz, S. (1996). Panel Report: Multidisciplinary Perspectives On The Concept Of Psychic Reality: Chaired by DAVID M. SACHS, Philadelphia. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 77:359-366.
    

(1996). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 77:359-366

Panel Report: Multidisciplinary Perspectives On The Concept Of Psychic Reality: Chaired by DAVID M. SACHS, Philadelphia

Stephen Grosz

The Chairman began by describing the focus of this panel: some philosophical problems precipitated by the concept of psychic reality. In particular, the panellists would be presenting their views on a wide range of issues including psychoanalytic epistemology, the verification of interpretations which rely on a theory of psychic reality, some implications for psychoanalysis as a result of recent developments in the neurosciences, and some of the ways that philosophy can help us to think about ‘psychic reality’. Sachs then introduced the first speaker, Gregorio Klimovsky.

In ‘Psychic reality: some epistemological aspects’, Klimovsky sought to portray a few similarities between the aims of a scientific theory and those of psychic reality. In particular, both aspire to provide a description of empirical reality, but a scientific theory and a psychical description will always be inadequate because both must be partial and subjective. In other words, a scientific theory and a psychical description are both subject to the effects of the unconscious. Klimovsky put forward his view that the contribution of psychoanalysis lies in its discovery that the subject's reality involves objects which are not empirical in the sense of being located in consciousness, but are unconscious and a product of the subject's unique development. Such unconscious objects—phantasies, for example—are not simple representations of something external, they are

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