This essay examines the stakes of the traversal of the fantasy in the unfolding of an analysis, arguing that the aim of a psychoanalysis is to liberate the unconscious quest that traverses the analysand by giving expression to what has been censored in his or her body. Paradoxically, however, it claims that this censored quest is not only unique to the individual analysand but something that articulates that subject to humanity as a whole. While Freud consistently underscores the fundamental solitude of the human being with respect to the free drive and the fantasies to which it gives rise, the under-examined corollary of this position is that human reality is fundamentally transindividual, traversed by a quest that impacts each and every human being but that belongs to no one in particular. The second section explores this transindividual dimension through a clinical case of hysteria; the third turns to the procedure of the Pass that for Lacan guarantees the production of the analyst, arguing that this procedure is essential precisely because it confirms the opening to the human that is the logical conclusion of an analytic cure.
The Traversal of the Fantasy as an Opening to Humanity
tracy mcnulty is a psychoanalyst in private practice in Ithaca, New York, as well as a professor in the Department of Comparative Literature at Cornell University. She is the author of The Hostess: Hospitality, Femininity, and the Expropriation of Identity (University of Minnesota Press, 2007) and Wrestling with the Angel: Experiments in Symbolic Life (Columbia University Press, 2014), as well as many essays on psychoanalysis, political theory, contemporary philosophy, and literature. Currently, she is completing two books: “Libertine Mathematics: Perversions of the Linguistic Turn” and “Emancipation by Relay: Freud in History.”
Tracy McNulty; The Traversal of the Fantasy as an Opening to Humanity. differences 1 December 2022; 33 (2-3): 198–219. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/10407391-10124760
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