Where does any start with psychoanalysis? Does one to have have a proper background in pyschology...

Where does any start with psychoanalysis? Does one to have have a proper background in pyschology? I'm familar with a bit of Lacan and Freud through Zizek (really just very little), but most theoretical concepts still fly over my head.

Is it even relevant to leftist thought?

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I took an entry level psychology course and it was really helpful and interesting, I know this is not avaliable for all but perhaps reading really simple learning materials (even high school-tier) might help you understand the subject.
I don't think so, it's very crude early psychology and thus not very scientific

Psychoanalysis is a method used in a lot of different fields, you don't need to study psychology to understand and apply it. It's a tool just like every form of analysis, and leftist intellectuals have applied it in their theories.

Psychoanalysis is the analysis of a person's thoughts.
It starts with empathy and respecting and caring about what someone thinks and why they think that way, the way NORMAL PEOPLE do
Then you expand this knowledge by thinking a lot about it and studying up on it.

To work in a psychological field you gotta have a degree or you'll be arrested

It's a very useful tool to analyze reality in general, and yes, it has some interest for someone engaged in lefty politics. In particular Whilelhm Reich "mass psychology of fascism" and Freud's "the future of an illusion" about which psychological mecanism respectively fascism and religion use to appeal people and control them.

Freud wrote an "introduction to psychanalisis", but i didn't read it so i dunno if it's good. Oh and i was told that "psychopatology of everyday life" it's good to begin with too.
Personally i started directly with his "clinical cases" (in particular with the little hans one, but they're all very cool). Probably i wasn't understanding half of the things i was reading, but it was entertaining anyway, and after the initial impact it teaches you a lot, so maybe it is not such a bad start to go with, in particular if you're common with the basic stuff you read in žizek.

This one is less interesting in terms of politics, but has some very cool stuff in terms of personal/group relationships, and can introduce you a little more to psychanalisis, considering the author is a freudian one and manages to be simple without being stupid. I'm talking about "games people play" by Eric Berne, i think you can easily find it in pdf.

Politics or not, psychanalisys it's one of the coolest things i can think of. Good trip user, i hope you'll like it as i do!!!

Start with epistemology, otherwise you'll just fill your head with bullshit beliefs

I started with the dream book and yes.
Understand that Freud like any good intellectual has developments, and the Interpretation of Dreams was his first major work and lays down a lot of his foundations such as repression, psychical structures, wish-fulfillment, symbolism.

i've been researching it privately, as well as seeing a psychoanalyst, for a little over a year now. i'll tell you now, most of this forum knows fucking nothing about it.

i started with second-hand sources surrounding lacan, which was honestly pretty stupid. the absolute easiest starting point has to be the pdf i have attached here. freud is not only a great and easy to understand writer, but he addresses several basic questions about psychoanalysis itself that you'll inevitably have early on in the lectures. it also makes dealing with lacan a little less obtuse than when you just jump right into him; having done that myself it's interesting to see freud talking about concepts which lacan takes in a radical direction here.

i think the most important part of studying psychoanalysis is to keep in mind that the whatever theory you're reading about, as complex as it may appear to be, is always discussing a part of your every day life. once you really internalize a theory, you're able to see it in what may have before been relatively dull conversations and social interactions, transforming the entire experience. it's the most rewarding research i've ever done.

ah shit, it wont let me post the pdf. it's available at this link: eduardolbm.files.wordpress.com/2014/10/a-general-introduction-to-psychoanalysis-sigmund-freud.pdf

You ask someone about a dream they had, you pick a detail from it and then you associate until it means they want to have sex with their father. That's what Freud did after all.


Please tell me how Freud was right after all about Anna O, since you must know all about it.

Why is psychoanalysis so out of fashion academically? I know it is claimed it wasn't scientific, but how scientific is the alternative? It seems like psychologists these days simply tell you to avoid negative thought patterns, or you go to a psychiatrist and get medication. I also have been reading every once in a while that all of psychology is in turmoil right now because of some study(s?) that proved there has been widespread bad methodology.

Cognitive psychology can actually be tested through studying how subjects react to stimuli and so on, and biological psychology can be tested though studying the physical workings of the brain. You can't scientifically prove if people have hidden desires to fuck their parents or nah

It's not about it being scientific or not, psychology is not a science after all. The reason it was fashionable is because you can use to gain any conclusion you want in the form of a detective novel. Lacan knew this and used it to mercilessly mock his students, having Guattari pay him to drive him around as a form of therapy.

what an odd case to pick as an argument against psychoanlaysis. i'd think you would've picked dora, an analysand freud was actually wrong about.

freud, and the psychoanalytic canon as a whole, would end up abandoning the particular theory of sexuality freud was working with at the time of anna o (an analysand freud never even met face to face!). the fundamental insight gained from anna's case is the primacy of language in analysis, not much else is important.

current "psychology" is laughable, and arguably reactionary in nature. psychoanalysis became "discredited" via a process of terribly performed tests by academic lackeys funded by pharmacological and insurance companies, who simply can't stand psychoanalysis' qualitative nature, and it just takes too darn long! it's nothing to take seriously.

and to think this bootlicker posts on a leftist forum!

What do you mean?

What is important is that it demonstrates the fundamental flaw at the root of psycho-analysis, it being free association without substantiation, this hasn't changed since Freud, only the fashions it suited itself to did.

you're posting like some kind of empiricist liberal, and you've clearly never engaged with any serious analytic literature.

think of the logical, societal, conclusions of the kind of university psychology you're regurgitating here:

1. if our mind is reducible to only biochemical abstractions, this means that any behavior done by humans is "only natural," and as such needn't be opposed since we can only be what we are. in other words, capitalism and every other form of exploitation really is human nature, in the cognitivist model.

2. biomedical reductionism explicitly calls for an individualization of suffering, a state of affairs most appetizing for our masters. "no, no, don't be unscientific, you're depressed because of your genes, the stress you feel living in these times is because of """negative thought patterns,""" nope nothing wrong out here, take this commodified pill and don't worry about it!"

again, this is nothing to be taken seriously. simply look at your own state of affairs, can you really convince yourself that whatever psychical malaise you may feel has a biological, rather than historical, character? i don't think any of us can do this with any amount of honesty. the superiority of psychoanalysis should be self-evident in any subject's lived experience.

what does this even mean? you really ought to read more if a case which freud didn't even manage is your smoking gun against analytic technique

I'm glad you feel strongly about the subject user, but I wasn't making a personal judgement about psychoanalysis, I answered a question about why it's academically out of fashion.

read fink
A Clinical Introduction to Freud: Techniques for Everyday Practice
A Clinical Introduction to Lacanian Psychoanalysis: Theory and Technique
The Lacanian Subject

read freud
Introductory lectures on psychoanalysis
The Interpretation of Dreams

lacan himself if inpenetrable in the beginning because it is sort of meta commentary on the state of psychoanalysis, relationship between psychoanalytic theorists and psychoanalysis together with theoretical developments and some edginess

the century of the self is a decent place to start, it's also on the recommended viewing list.

it could be applied to leftist thought.

you might also want to check out;

is there perhaps anything on how to counter fascist brainwashing?

Since when are normal people so empathetic and respectful towards random strangers?


Because it doesn't sell you drugs.

I don't think taking an intro to psychology class qualifies you to make claims like this, especially considering there are many practicing psychoanalysts today.

People with proper backgrounds in psychology don't take psychoanalysis seriously, and neither should you

Can you cite a source?

Sage was on


But what if by asking for a source, you are merely attempting to mask your own desire for "official" justification? This is the really important question.

An empirical approach to psychology does not lead to the conclusions you describe.

Your first point is incorrect as we do not need to accept "natural" behaviors as desirable just as we do not accept natural errors of DNA replication leading to cancer to be desirable. Further more even if you wanted to believe that natural means good, you could just as well argue that the human behavior in Cuba or other socialist state is natural and therefore socialism is the natural state of humans.

You second point is also not logically sound. If cognitive psychology is the study of how external stimuli are processed, then it makes no sense to say that depression is a result of negative thought patters. Your argument it seem like cognitive psychology would attribute mental illness to endogenous factors only. The proper approach of cognitive psychology is to identify the external stimulus and deal with it. Therefore, for a leftist, it is quite clear that many times the external stressor is related to the capitalist system. So elimination of this system can go a long way in helping people.

I can agree that reductionist biomedical research under capitalism is done for the purpose of creating new pharmaceutical commodities to sell. No matter how much you like Chairman Mao, you cannot paint empiricism as some reactionary force that leads to commodification and individualization of human suffering when it is the capitalist system that forces human talent to apply their skills to profit seeking.

I have a proper background in psychology. It is true that psychoanalysis has been largely discarded as a scientific pursuit. You would have a very difficult time getting funding to do any sort of research on human behavior using psychoanalysis framework.

Psychoanalytic techniques are still used in therapy. If you listen to democracy at wrok, one of the recurring guests is a therapist who has training in psychoanalytic techniques.

you're completely misunderstanding my point. biomedical/empiricist psychology is based on its own axioms incapable of accounting for historical change. this is where it completely fails. how can the purely biological model of the mind explain pre-scientific social developments? would you really like to have us believe that historical change is a product of a differentiation in historical actors' neuropsychology? , even better, what is the empirical/biological explanation for the existence of the neurosciences themselves? there is, obviously, no answer for these kinds of questions. the reductionist, and this applies down to the clinical setting, cannot wrangle with this ontologically immaterial aspect of the human experience. the vulgar-empirical psychological framework is doomed to only view human behavior as a product of biology, while (willfully? perhaps) ignoring the really present social forces as a causation for biological change. only psychoanalysis is capable of this move.

as for your second point, while it may be true that we can easily identify capitalism as a, in that annoying cognitivist language, "negative external stimuli,' however i would like you to try and tell me that the ONLY clinical outcome of CBT is anything but conformity.
absolute bullshit! if anything, the OPPOSITE is true. cognitivism doesn't try and change the external stimuli, it trains a subject to police their reactions to said stimuli. again, the empirical framework you're parroting here is INCAPABLE of integrating social change into its epistemology, a hallmark of reactionary ideology. as for your, frankly childish, appeals to science, we can easily dispute the fact that the "scientific consensus" has decided, with NO evidence of its inexistence, to do away with the notion of the unconscious altogether, despite literal mountains of psychoanalytic research confirming its presence. very scientific, to be sure.

and it's gotten you nowhere.

let it be known folks, your field of study is only legitimate if ideologically-motivated groups of pharmacology moguls are willing to give you "funding to do any sort of research on human behavior." if they're not interested, you're probably dealing with a theory that should be abandoned. yep, nothing strange happening here. politically-driven doctrine being taught in universities? nonsense!

bump, want more psyA convo on here

I'm asking for a source because I worry that too many people simply take it as a given that modern psychology has a lot to say about psychoanalytic theories, or disproved them. I don't think it's true. But I also don't know for sure one way or the other, and I'm wondering why so many people who don't know a whole lot about it take it as a given that it's been disproven (or whatever).

I hope you see the problem with saying something that won't receive funding is also discredited. I'm a PhD student in economics. There's a ton of money for people who want to study financial economics… not so much for people who want to study the history of economic thought. But you wouldn't say that the one field has discredited the other right?

I tend to think about it this way:
sankhya - physics
yoga - psychology
vedanta - metaphysics
hope that helps!

Daily reminder that Freud hated Marx because thought material conditions did not influence human behavior, and was sympathetic towards fascism. All you faggots are pushing the psychoanalytics meme because the sniff man talks about it but are too stupid to realize Freud is incompatible with leftist philosophy

Leftist psychoanalysis is one of those new left memes that does nothing but put activism in the hands of "trained professionals" (i.e. neoliberal bureaucrats.) It must be forcibly expunged from all left wing thought and organizations.

freud is a fucking hack

please be trolling or something. maybe i just don't want to believe this board is that retarded.

freud was "sympathetic towards fascism???" what? if anything, freudian theory is the most effective tool of critical social analysis in regards to fascist ideology. freud was certainly no political radical, but to associate him with fascism, when he himself was a fucking jew, is ABSURD.

and for the icing on the idiot cake, we have

folks, please, can we at some point recognize that it's stupid to criticize things you know nothing about? yes, freud was largely antagonistic to marx, and his political beliefs are mostly reactionary, but not only is it ridiculous to reduce psychoanalytic theory to just freud's political opinions (somehow i have to state this as if it isn't blatantly fucking obvious to any sane person), but more importantly, psychoanalysis is the only truly materialist conception of the mind available today. psychoanalysis, when understood properly, is in fact the analysis of the historical, social dimension of the empirical person's life. marxism is the same epistemological framework, but applied societally. interestingly enough, other "scientific" psychological explanations of human behavior are as idealist as they come, because they cannot account for the negativity of the social dimension which both psychoanalysis AND marxism place a the forefront. i have no problem saying this: to reject psychoanalysis as THE communist model of the psyche is to condemn yourself as a reactionary or at lest as a liberal.

ah yes, one of those "new left memes" that has been an essential component of critical theory since the thirties. such a neoliberal fad.

it's hilarious that you're associating psychoanalytic theory, which is, by the way, available to everyone at this point, with the postmodern trend of the "culture of experts," when the largest opposition to psychoanalysis today are those very same "experts" who deride it for being "unscientific." simply look at this thread for evidence.

also, why on earth are you bringing activism into this?

Critical theory was largely a mistake. Academics need to stay out of leftism.

The only leftist relevant aspects of psychoanalysis are d&g on schizophrenia and capitalism, Deleuze was an inspiration to Fisher's capitalist realism, most notably the section where he talks about how capitalism internalizes mental illness into an individual scale.

Hi Zero books

have you tried posting on diogn.es ?

D&G are shit. read badiou, read lacan, hell, read fucking freud. the quote you posted is merely a quasi-lacanian reading of the pharmacological market.

oh this is fucking rich. jesus fucking christ man. what exactly do you want? if you weren't already aware, the founding texts of leftism, the historically important leftist figures, THE FUCKING PEOPLE WHO CREATED THE LEFTIST TRADITION, were philosophers, writers, academics. i don't even know where to begin. maybe -maybe- you're trying to say that university ideologues are useless- if that's the case, i agree. but that is almost certainly what isn't happening here. you seem to think that philosophy (critical theory) isn't leftist. all i need to ask is what on fucking EARTH you think marx himself is, or lenin, or althusser, or zizek, or literally ANY FUCKING PERSON IMPORTANT TO OUR TRADITION.

there is a very real anti intellectual undercurrent happening on this board, and no one seems to be saying anything about it

Let me clarify that I have not made any judgement on the superiority of empirical psychology over psychoanalysis. I also am denying there is deliberate suppression of psychoanalysis as a field of study. I guess you are arguing that psychoanalysis possess inherently revolutionary properties and is therefore suppressed and empiricism is chosen as the orthodoxy as it does not threaten the power structure of capitalism. To that I say there needs to be revolution in science but the same could be said of any other part of capitalist society.

Please elaborate more what you mean here.

I don't think there's anything wrong with viewing human behavior an emergent property of the brain and body. Isn't that dialectics at work?

Is a model of the mind even necessary for analysis or larger human phenomenon such as economics? Historically, there were no models or very poor models. This does not mean I approve of bourgeois economics, besides Marxian economics does not make use of detailed models of the mind yet produces very good predictions about capitalism.

I think your criticism of the way clinical research is done is correct, but I don't think this is something intrinsic to empirical psychology or other scientific field. Maybe there is a misunderstanding, I am not saying cognitive behavioral therapy is correct or superior to other approaches. I am saying that empirical approaches to investigating nature are not inherently reactionary. The material conditions dictate how the science is used. I fail to see how a scientist from the (1950s) PRC or USSR is undermining the revolution by doing their work. The important thing is for proper ideology to regulate how science is used (within limits so we don't have another repeat of genetics = reactionary).

I think that at least in biology, social forces are acknowledged as causal factors for biological change. The academics I have worked with also acknowledge social forces affect the development and function of the mind. I don't think your criticism of the field is accurate.

The empirical approach does not have a good way of measuring the unconscious. Maybe it's a weakness.

I can only talk about basic research since that's all I've done. Private interests do not play a direct role in basic research. Funding is provided by the state. A bourgeois state is obviously influenced by private interest but most direct melding by big pharma would occur for clinical/"transnational" research.

I think it's a shame that the psychoanalytic approach is not researched more deeply. My post was describing the state of psychology.

1997 → 2007 → 1995:

Study help:

Find a Lacanian analyst:

Lacan documentary with his patients (turn on subtitles): youtube.com/watch?v=f1F-zysTjWg