Learning Lacan

Lacanian psychoanalysis is notoriously obscure, almost as if Lacan wanted to be obtuse… I agree that it looks more like a cult than a science, but I’ve always found there’s a certain poetry in somthing that is both indistiguishably the ramblings of a madman who may as well be high on drugs and a respected field of advanced academics. Call me crazy but sometimes in my spare time I enjoy listening to this craziness and try to make sense of it.

Of course, to do that, like any good student, I’m taking notes. And I think that’s where a lot of people fail. You see, to properly take notes about Lacan, a simple 2 dimensional sheet of paper is not enough (3 dimensions if you’re using several sheets). It all gets much simpler when you add more dimensions. However, there is not a lot of programs optimized for freeform multidimensional notetaking, so I’ve gravitated towards graphical programs because they have layers that offer a third dimension and can even be organized 2 dimensionally. Also I’m using color coding, font sizes etc… and different files, so to sum up I’ll say that I’m taking notes in approximately 5 dimensions. I’m using GIMP, so the format is .xcf for now.

In the end, it adds up to quite a lot of work and effort, so I thought I’d put it openly here in the off chance that someone wants to make use of it, or more likely to make people laugh.


If you want a laugh, this is what the notes look like projected back on a 2D screen:

So what did I learn?

For now, it’s mostly terminology definitions and analogies, pointing out that things are like other things. It’s an interesting topology/framework to discuss psychology, but I have yet to see any claim that is not definitional (tautological). And I definitely didn’t see anything prescriptive or with a therapeutic/curative goal. I’m only at the beginning though so check this space for more soon 🙂 This is a WIP!

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