Recollection

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French: remémoration

Jacques Lacan[edit | edit source]

Recollection and remembering (mémoration) are symbolic processes which Lacan contrasts with reminiscence (réminiscence), which is an imaginary phenomenon.

Whereas remembering is the act whereby some event or signifier is registered for the first time in the symbolic memory, recollection is the act whereby such an event or signifier is recalled.

Reminiscence[edit | edit source]

Reminiscence involves reliving past experience and feeling once again the emotions associated with that experience.

Lacan stresses that the analytic process does not aim at reminiscence but at recollection.

While it is true that intense memories may be evoked in psychoanalytic treatment, with accompanying emotional discharge, this is not the basis of the analytic process.

Reminiscence is also linked by Lacan to the Platonic theory of knowledge.

Psychoanalytic Treatment[edit | edit source]

Recollection in the treatment involves the patient tracing the master signifiers of his life.

"The realization by the subject of his history in his relation to a future."<ref>Lacan, Jacques. Écrits: A Selection. Trans. Alan Sheridan. London: Tavistock Publications, 1977. p. 88</ref>

By means of recollection, the treatment aims at "the complete reconstitution of the subject's history"<ref>Lacan, Jacques. The Seminar. Book I. Freud's Papers on Technique, 1953-54. Trans. John Forrester. New York: Nortion; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988. p. 12</ref> and the "assumption of his history by the subject."<ref>Lacan, Jacques. Écrits: A Selection. Trans. Alan Sheridan. London: Tavistock Publications, 1977. p. 48</ref>

What matters is not "reliving" the formative events of the past in any intuitive or experiential way; on the contrary, what matters is what the analysand reconstructs of his past,<ref>Lacan, Jacques. The Seminar. Book I. Freud's Papers on Technique, 1953-54. Trans. John Forrester. New York: Nortion; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988. p.13</ref> the key word being "reconstruct".

"It is less a matter of remembering than of rewriting history."<ref>Lacan, Jacques. The Seminar. Book I. Freud's Papers on Technique, 1953-54. Trans. John Forrester. New York: Nortion; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988. p.14</ref>

See Also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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