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    topology in psychoanalysis

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    m14 topology in psychoanalysis

    مُساهمة من طرف teacher في الجمعة 16 مايو 2008, 5:23 pm

    Topology in psychoanalysis

    I'm curious as to why this section is even here. So a psychologist has borrowed some words from mathematics. Mathematicians do that all the time. This seems to be the case of Undue weight, is your average reader of this article interested? No. The correct weighting for this is 0 - delete. --Salix alba (talk) 14:33, 12 September 2006 (UTC)


    As my last edit summary shows, not fifteen minutes ago I was of the same opinion, but a bit too cautious to just get rid of it myself. It is, after all, bollocks. (And I didn't notice that after Anti-Vandal Patrol's revert of the IP's edits, the IP himself removed the paragraph, and my supposed "revert to IP" actually had the effect of restoring it).

    However, on the other hand, a good paragraph which tells the reader precisely this (that Lacan's topology is bollocks) might be in order. Don't worry, I'm not going to start any revert wars over this, but I do think that there is something to be said for a five line paragraph mentioning Lacan's ramblings and pointing out to the reader that they are not to be confused with the actual subject of topology, but are merely the pretentious maunderings of yet another postmodernist. Just to alleviate any confusion that might exist - and after all, a reader might be drawn to this article to find precisely that fact out... Byrgenwulf 14:50, 12 September 2006 (UTC)




    It might be better under the Jacques Lacan page, or Borromean rings, or maybe a new page Mathematical models in psychoanalysis, or maybe we could broden the section to topological methaphors, I'm sure there are many other instances where the languare of topology has been borrowed in other fields. Off the top of my head we have the Tokamak torus in physics, which works because of the Hairy ball theorem. Thom's work comes to mind, while not strictly topology he was very keen on aplying mathematical ideas to diverse phenomena. I saw a book yesterday which had a chapter on postmodern mathematics which this stuff probably fits.

    It's actually not complete bolocks! What lucan is saying is that the Real, the Imaginary, and the Symbolic are interlinked and if you remove one the other two fall apart. He's used pictorial means to represent this, theres quite a few similar instances in the psychological field where they use some form of pictorial representation to illustrate relationships of abstract concepts. By the methodology of psychology its about as valid as much of the other work and by the subjects nature they need to use a very different methodological framework. We in mathematics are not equipped to judge, apart from say this is not mathematics. --Salix alba (talk) 15:37, 12 September 2006 (UTC)






    Saying that the real, imaginary and symbolic are interlinked is fine, as would be using a diagram to illustrate the idea. However, saying that "the phallus is the square root of minus one" (as Lacan did) because of the result of a so-called "calculation" is out and out pretentiousness...in other words, using terminology to sound posh but actually not saying very much of any import. I certainly appreciate the benefits of using analogies to and from maths, it's just that Lacan didn't use his "method" as analogy: he seemed to think he was actually doing mathematics. So do his disciples. But he wasn't: he was using mathematical words. There is one Hell of a difference.

    But fine, the paragraph can stay out. I suppose the article is better without mention of him... Byrgenwulf 15:59, 12 September 2006 (UTC)








    "What should we make of Lacan's mathematics? Commentators disagree about Lacan's intentions: to what extent was he aiming to 'mathematicize' psychoanalysis? We are unable to give any definitive answer to this question — which, in any case, does not matter much, since Lacan's 'mathematics' are so bizarre that they cannot play a role in any serious psychological analysis.

    "To be sure, Lacan does have a vague idea of the mathematics he invokes (but not much more). It is not from him that a student will learn what a natural number or a compact set is, but his statements, when they are understandable, are not always false. On the other hand, he excels (if we may use this word) at the second type of abuse listed in our introduction: his analogies between psychoanalysis and mathematics are the most arbitrary imaginable, and he gives absolutely no empirical or conceptual justification for them (neither here nor elsewhere in his work).

    "[...] Lacan's defenders (as well as those of the other authors discussed here) tend to respond to these criticisms by resorting to a strategy that we shall call 'neither/nor': these writings should be evaluated neither as science, nor as philosophy, nor as poetry, nor ... One is then faced with what could be called a 'secular mysticism': mysticism because the discourse aims at producing mental effects that are not purely aesthetic, but without addressing itself to reason; secular because the cultural references (Kant, Hegel, Marx, Freud, mathematics, contemporary literature ...) have nothing to do with traditional religions and are attractive to the modern reader."

    Quoted from Alan Sokal and Jean Bricmont, Intellectual Impostures (2nd edition, 2003), p. 34.

    There are so many more important things which should be discussed in a general overview of topology than Lacan's misappropriation of its terminology. Anville 18:22, 12 September 2006 (UTC)










    Good point Anville. Its just not appropriate subject matter for this article period. Its not about whether its bull or incredibly insightful, its simply that Lacan has not contributed anything of note to the study of topology, which this article is about. Brentt 19:46, 12 September 2006 (UTC)



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    m14 رد: topology in psychoanalysis

    مُساهمة من طرف Asmaa Mahmoud في السبت 17 مايو 2008, 4:40 pm

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