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Veszy-Wagner, L. (1959). La Psychanalyse, 1953–1955: Vol. I, 'Sur la Parole et le langage', vii+291 pp.; Vol. II, 'Mélanges cliniques, ' 323 pp. (Presses Universitaires de France, 1956.). Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 40:347-348.

(1959). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 40:347-348

La Psychanalyse, 1953–1955: Vol. I, 'Sur la Parole et le langage', vii+291 pp.; Vol. II, 'Mélanges cliniques, ' 323 pp. (Presses Universitaires de France, 1956.)

Review by:
Lilla Veszy-Wagner

The first volume is a symposium dedicated to semiotic and linguistic matters and is greatly influenced by existentialist teachings (Jaspers, Heidegger, etc.). We even find a similar trend in the second volume, in the preliminary part of J. Lacan's seminar in a short story by E. A. Poe, trying to find a common ground for Heidegger's and Kierkegaard's philosophical principles and Freud's meta-psychological ideas as expressed in 'Entwurf einer Psychologie' (1893). It makes difficult reading by reason of the use of a different nomenclature from that accepted by psycho-analysis. Neologisms like 'chosification' ('thingification' if we had to translate it, I, p. v) or 'autruicherie' ('ostrichism', II, p. 34) do not help towards clarification. (J. Lacan's essays take up the greater part of Vol. I as well).

On the other hand, D. Lagache's paper: 'Sur le polyglottisme dans l'analyse', on bilingual analyses (in Vol. I), brings us back to the familiar analytic idiom of our profession. Choice and transition from one language to another reveals, according to Dr. Lacan's data of resistance, transference and phantasy life. Rejection of or clinging to the mother tongue has its significance, since it is the ego ideal which manifests itself in the chosen language (?), and the return to it means a return to one's childhood. The second, auxiliary language used could mean a defence or an attempt at approaching the analyst or, conversely, hostility or rivalry. The analyst's incomplete command of the patient's language is not regarded as a serious obstacle.

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