This book integrates thinking about dilemmas faced in the context of the clinical practice of psychoanalysis today, with contemporary social and political concerns specific to the age of the global consumer marketplace.
Beginning with an analysis of the fate of the concept of sublimation in Freud’s work, and its relationship to the elaboration of the concept of the superego in 1923, Jared Russell examines how these concepts provide a lever for integrating psychoanalytic thinking with topics of urgent social concern, beyond the critique of ideology. Taking up topics such as the experience of time, addiction to consumption, and the general consequences of the insinuation of digital technologies at increasingly earlier stages in human development—and thinking these through the lens of what the clinical practice of psychoanalysis teaches us about intimate human relatedness—the book addresses how a philosophically oriented approach to psychoanalysis can illuminate our response to the problems of everyday life under conditions of late capitalism. Drawing on a diverse range of authors such as Freud, Heidegger, Hans Loewald, Christopher Bollas, Lacan, Deleuze and Bernard Stiegler, it is argued that the concepts of sublimation and of the superego must be reinvented with regard to both clinical and critical discourse today if psychoanalysis is to remain relevant to the major issues we face, both individually and collectively, in the twenty-first century.
Sublimation and Superego: Psychoanalysis Between Two Deaths stages a unique encounter between philosophy, critical theory and clinical practice that will be of interest to psychoanalysts, scholars of twentieth-century continental philosophy, critical social theorists and mental health practitioners.
'In Sublimation and Superego, Jared Russell opens up a transitional space where Freud is brought into conversation with Sophocles, Heidegger, Nietzsche and Deleuze as well as post-Freudian psychoanalysts like Loewald and Bollas. In this space, the dialogue between these thinkers transcends the disciplinary boundaries of ontology, metaphysics, psychoanalysis and deconstruction. Sublimation and Superego points the way to a deeper understanding of the relationship between self and other, both in and out of the clinic.' - Mikita Brottman, Maryland Institute College of Art, USA
'A timely retrieval of the question of sublimation for psychoanalysis. The third installment of an author whose rigorous sincerity shows the great value of clinicians and theorists responding to the critical discoveries of Nietzsche.' - Tim Themi, University of Melbourne, Australia
Table of Contents
1. Freud—Sublimation and superego 2. Hans Loewald—between Freud and Heidegger 3. The fundamental ontology of Christopher Bollas 4. Antigone—sublimation as transgressive autonomy 5. Weapons
About the Author:
Jared Russell, PhD, is a psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City. He is the author of Nietzsche and the Clinic: Psychoanalysis, Philosophy, Metaphysics (Routledge 2017) and Psychoanalysis and Deconstruction: Freud’s Psychic Apparatus (Routledge 2020).