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Imagining Otherwise

Metapsychology and the Analytic A Posteriori

Cutrofello, Andrew

Publication Year: 1997

Andrew Cutrofello's book performs a psychoanalytic inversion of transcendental philosophy, taking Kant's synthetic a prior judgments and reading them in terms of a foreclosed Kantian category that of the analytic a posteriori. Working primarily out of Freudian and Lacanian problematics, Cutrofello not only subjects Kantian thought to psychoanalytic questioning, but also develops a systematic critique of metapsychology itself, disclosing and assessing its own paralogisms, antinomies, ideal, and ethics. This is a provocative reflection on the tensions between the Enlightenment project of critique and psychoanalytic theory.

Published by: Northwestern University Press

Series: Studies in Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy

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pp. xi-xii

No doubt my book is best where I do not think to think, and so where the work of others is present in it. But I am quite aware of some influences to which I would like to call explicit attention. Alison Brown is a an exemplary philosopher. Her book Fear, Truth, Writing helped me clarify my thoughts about the relationship between ...

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1. Introduction: An Inverse Kantianism

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pp. 1-27

The thesis of this book is that there is a very precise, systematic relationship between Immanuel Kant's Critique of Pure Reason and the metapsychological theories of Sigmund Freud and Jacques Lacan. By positing the existence of synthetic a priori judgments, Kant opens up the field of transcendental philosophy. This move presupposes, however, that the ...

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2. Aesthetics of Neurosis

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pp. 28-49

According to Freud, the neuroses in general result when the ego represses an instinctual impulse originating in the id (SE XIX, 149-50). Because of this repression, the impulse remains or becomes unconscious, finding its way back into consciousness only through a symptom. To put this in Kantian terms, we could say that repression deflects something ...

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3. Logics of Perversion

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pp. 50-74

If the neuroses are aesthetic, then the perversions are conceptual-for in perversion, what remains consigned to the level of sensibility appears at the level of judging consciousness-i.e., at the level of understanding. Part of what would distinguish perverse subjects from neurotics, then, would be the fact that perverse subjects theorize their symptoms-witness the writings of Sade....

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4. Principles of Discourse

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pp. 75-101

Up until this point there has been an ambiguity in my treatment of cognition as a drive. On the one hand, I have been relating Freud's account of the inner/outer distinction to Kant's distinction between time and space. On the other hand, I have been relating Freud's account to Kant's distinction between sensibility and understanding. This ambiguity ...

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5. Paralogisms of Narcissism

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pp. 102-116

Kant's principles of the understanding, I have argued, can be said to enact perverse fantasies that remain unconscious for the obsessional subject. That they remain unconscious would signify that they are not allowed to go beyond certain limits. Specifically, the repressed fantasies are not allowed to enter consciousness. At the level of manifest judgment, ...

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6. Antinomies of Schizophrenia

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pp. 117-129

For Kant, the idea of the world as totality-and its dynamical corollary, the idea of nature-are regulative concepts that guide reason in its empirical employment. Treated as if they were constitutive of actual objects, these concepts give rise to a series of metaphysical antinomies, whose solution Kant claims to have discovered. ...

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7. Ideals of Paranoia

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pp. 130-140

If schizophrenia results from the struggle between the imagination and the understanding, paranoia can be said to result when the understanding wins. More precisely, paranoia arises when the principles of the understanding are extended beyond empirical reality to the order of the Real-thereby impelling the imagination to schematize where no ...

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8. The Ethics of Psychoanalysis

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pp. 141-158

At the outset of this book I argued that Kant' s critical method was based on an insistence-an insistence on treating limits of experience as synthetic a priori. One might ask: Is that which motivates Kant best represented as an insistence on thinking the synthetic a priori or as a taboo against thinking the analytic a posteriori? ...

Works Cited

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pp. 159-162


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pp. 163-166

E-ISBN-13: 9780810165953
Print-ISBN-13: 9780810114005

Page Count: 166
Publication Year: 1997

Edition: 1
Series Title: Studies in Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy