Lacan's Psychoanalysis and Plato's Symposium: Desire and the (In)Efficacy of the Signifying Order

A.D.C. Cake


Thepaper presents a suggestive interpretation of Lacans interest in the relationship between Socrates and Alcibiades, insofar as this relationship makes a certain common understanding of love in Plato and psychoanalysis emerge.The author contends that Lacans interpretation makes it possible to understand how, in the ancient text, desire is already understood as an unconscious motivation, not only in terms of its inexorable power to determine a persons aims, but also in its ability to subsist between and beyond the rules of conscious discourse.

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