crits: The Complete Text

Jacques Lacan, Author, Bruce Fink, Translator, Heloise Fink, Other , trans. from the French by Bruce Fink with Héloïse Fink and Russell Norton $50 (878p) ISBN 978-0-393-06115-4

French psychoanalyst Lacan (1901–1981) is perhaps best known for claiming that the unconscious is like a language that needs to be interpreted, rather than a storage space for repressed feelings. His writings, which borrow from such diverse fields as linguistics, philosophy, mathematics and religion, have had a profound impact on literary and cultural criticism as well as psychoanalysis. While the English-speaking world has enjoyed James Strachey's Standard Edition of Freud's complete works since 1967, there is no comparable standard English translation for Lacan's oeuvre. There have been at least six different translations of his writings into English, and some of the early translations are notoriously unreliable. Fink, a practicing psychoanalyst and professor at Duquesne University, has produced the first complete English translation of Écrits . This opus, first published by Éditions du Seuil in 1966, includes Lacan's most influential texts and is one of the most widely read works of 20th-century critical thought. The collection spans 30 years of Lacan's career and contains 35 texts, from "Beyond the 'Reality Principle'" (1936) and "The Mirror Stage" (1937) to "Science and Truth" (1966). Most of the texts date from the 1950s and 1960s—a crucial turning point in Lacan's development: it was then that he shifted his focus from the operations of language and the imaginary and symbolic orders to the concepts of the real, fantasy and the objet petit a . Fink's precise new translation makes this pivotal period in Lacan's thought more accessible to English speakers. (Dec.)

Reviewed on: 11/07/2005
Release date: 01/01/2006
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