Lacan and Marx: The Invention of the Symptom, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Lacan and Marx

The Invention of the Symptom, 1st Edition

By Pierre Bruno


232 pages

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pub: 2019-08-27
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Lacan and Marx: The Invention of the Symptom provides an incisive commentary on Lacan’s reading of Marx, mapping the relations between these two vastly influential thinkers.

Unlike previous books, Bruno provides a detailed history of Lacan’s reading of Marx and surveys his references to Marx in both his writings and seminars. Examining Lacan’s key argument that Marx "invented the symptom", Bruno shows how Lacan went on to criticize Marx and contrasts Marx’s concept of surplus-value with Lacan’s surplus-enjoyment. Exploring the division between Marxist and psychoanalytic perspectives on social and psychological need and Lacan’s formalisation of the capitalist discourse, the book compares the positions of Althusser, Deleuze and Guattari, and Žižek on the relations between Lacan, Marx and capitalism, using a wide range of cultural examples, from Stevenson’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde to Brecht’s Joan Dark and Pierpont Mauler. Through these readings, Bruno also elaborates an extended commentary on Lacan’s central idea of the division of the subject. His focus is not only on showing how we can exit from capitalism but also, and just as importantly, on showing how we can make capitalism exit from us.

This book will be of great interest to scholars and readers of Lacan and Marx from across the fields of psychoanalysis, philosophy and political economy, and will also appeal to Lacanian psychoanalysts in clinical practice.

Table of Contents

Translator’s Preface


Part One: The Splitting of the Subject

Chapter One: London/Berlin

Chapter Two: From A to Z

Part Two: The Capitalist Discourse

Chapter Three: UMHA

Chapter Four: The Capitalist Exemption

Appendix 1: Lacan’s Portrait of Marx

Appendix 2: The Insatiable


About the Author

Pierre Bruno is a psychoanalyst based in Paris. He is a former professor of psychoanalysis at the University of Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint-Denis, and he is a member of the psychoanalytic association Le pari de Lacan (Lacan’s Wager) and the editorial board of the journal Psychanalyse.

About the Series

The Centre for Freudian Analysis and Research Library (CFAR)

The Centre for Freudian Analysis and Research (CFAR) was founded in 1985 with the aim of developing Freudian and Lacanian psychoanalysis in the UK. Lacan's rereading and rethinking of Freud had been neglected in the Anglophone world, despite its important implications for the theory and practice of psychoanalysis. The CFAR Library aims to make classic Lacanian texts available in English for the first time, as well as publishing original research in the Lacanian field.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Movements / Psychoanalysis
PSYCHOLOGY / Mental Health