Erin Felicia Labbie
Reveals the important links between medieval studies and Jacques Lacan.
One of the foundational premises of Jacques Lacan’s psychoanalytical project was that the history of philosophy concealed the history of desire, and one of the goals of his work was to show how desire is central to philosophical thinking.
In Lacan’s Medievalism, Erin Felicia Labbie demonstrates how Lacan’s theory of desire is bound to his reading of medieval texts. She not only alters the relationship between psychoanalysis and medieval studies, but also illuminates the ways that premodern and postmodern epochs and ideologies share a concern with the subject, the unconscious, and language, thus challenging notions of strict epistemological cuts. Lacan’s psychoanalytic work contributes to the medieval debate about universals by revealing how the unconscious relates to the category of the real.
By analyzing the systematic adherence to dialectics and the idealization of the hard sciences, Lacan’s Medievalism asserts that we must take into account the play of language and desire within the unconscious and literature in order to understand the way that we know things in the world and the manner in which order is determined.
Introduction: The Unconscious Is Real
1. Singularity, Sovereignty, and the One
2. Duality, Ambivalence, and the Animality of Desire
3. Dialectics, Courtly Love, and the Trinity
4. The Quadrangle, the Hard Sciences, and Nonclassical Thinking
5. The Pentangle and the Resistant Knot
I'm curious to see which medieval texts Labbie selects, and how much of what she says is new. I also wonder how much of Lacan's medievalism is really the same as his catholicism. Looks intriguing.