Breuer and Freud – psychoanalysis, science and philosophy




Despite the conceptual, poetic, political and existential complexity in which the psychoanalytic discipline implied, Freud always referred to it as fundamentally a science.

“This slow collapse, which did not alter the physiognomic features of the whole, is interrupted by the dawn which, in a flash, discovers at once the structure of the new world” (Hegel, The phenomenology of the spirit).

“Science also rests on a belief, there is no science 'without presuppositions'” (Nietzsche, the gay science).

Something special that characterizes the way of formulating thought and meaning in the universe of psychoanalysis is the fact, quite strange to philosophy, that the Freudian discipline was founded and always evolved through what its creator called a method. A very privileged point in the principle and organization of the experience of psychoanalysis, the psychoanalytic method is itself a deviation, intimately marked with the characteristics of a possible modality of scientific psychology, part of the broader epistemological and also social field of the scientific method, this true titan of modernity.

In fact, despite the conceptual, poetic, political and existential complexity that the psychoanalytic discipline implied, Freud always referred to it, from the beginning to the end of his intellectual and human journey, as fundamentally a science. And, thus, being psychoanalysis a science, as it is in the Freudian conception, its background metaphysics, its fundamental reasons, imply certain necessary traces of values ​​and meaning, which precede and allow the emergence of every field of observation and of experience.

They are, precisely, the foundations of a particular way of conceiving and producing human worlds: the conception of an open, infinite, and incognito plane of reality to the human imaginary world. Also the universal reason that, worked, can potentially be articulated in a point to the reason of this real. The conception of a way to access an articulation of this real, a fundamental empiricism that founds and develops the theoretical hypothesis. Plus the definition of its object and its theoretical contours. The experimental dimension that articulates and moves the empirical data and the negativity inherent to the theoretical advance, where nothing is proved forever.

With philosophical interests in his youth, having studied for consecutive semesters with the philosopher and epistemologist Franz Brentano at the University of Vienna even as a medical student, in addition to his personal literary and humanistic erudition, well founded in the classical tradition of the German Enlightenment, Freud could not leave of noting the greater impact that his discoveries on the psyche and the production of human meaning – whose principles and object had their origin in a kind of scientific proving ground, the psychoanalytic clinic – actually made in the traditional way of philosophical investigation, and his own results, which united in a free and self-founded way speculation and conceptualization according to the dictates of reason.

Very early on, in the construction of his discipline, with astonishment and a good dash of irony, but precisely, Freud actually underlined the problem: “At this point we are perhaps seized by the suspicion that the interpretation of dreams is capable of giving us explanations about the structure of our psychic apparatus which until now we have waited in vain for from philosophy.”[I]

And then, in the same passage of The interpretation of dreams, to make this position – critical, epistemological or ideological? – even more delicate, and unstable, Freud completes: “we will not follow this lead”. The slightest sentence of high critical and ideological impact, enunciated in a surreptitious manner under the sign of suspicion, should be kept that way, within the synthetic and positive limit of its pure affirmation. For, in fact, it was the internal scientific work of psychoanalysis that was of interest to the first psychoanalyst at the time, and it was this work, which followed its own method, and its result, which meant the real test, based on a way of managing science. for the understanding of subjective life, a new destiny for science, which would put some of the values ​​of meaning proper to philosophy in real suspension.

The negative thrust in relation to the universe of philosophy, from which, according to Freud, “we hope in vain” something about the “structure” of what he then called “our psychic apparatus”, is quite clear here. It means hope in a research in search of a degree of security, a degree of realization and tangency of the real about human symbolic life, which only a construction of knowledge founded on some degree of commitment to science could produce, as well as how to allow evolution, according to the negativity of the scientific method. Exactly this condition would be that of the symbolic productivity proper to psychoanalysis.

There are many comments on the young Sigmund Freud's implicated and radical shift from the world of philosophy in his youth, his interest in law and politics, to the emerging universe of science of his time, already committed to the technique and practical art of the clinic. , in turn addressed the medicine market itself in a large urban center such as Vienna in the mid-nineteenth century[ii].

In fact, as is known, the young intellectual, Viennese Jew, rationalist, secular and emancipated, gave up studying law at the last moment – ​​known to be under the influence of the small essay “The nature”, attributed to Goethe – and he even became disillusioned with the limits of the progressive political field of the Viennese social democratic youth, in which he had participated, as soon as he realized how the universal public reason exercised in the period did not imply in a profound way the modern critique of anti-Semitism.

Such a practical, subjective limit to the politics of his time and place revealed a true failure of public reason, the victory of the imaginary distortion of human things over universal rational values. This limit of Viennese liberalism that implied it, the strong presence of the ideology of anti-Semitism in its time, configured a political problem of crisis of reason that could, later, be thought through with its own psychoanalysis. In this way, for many, the turn towards Freud's science meant a safe search for intervention and production of meaning, in a public field that articulated social and political realities in an irrational way, according to the reason for desire - to evoke a later notion of his , which would indeed have immense repercussions on Western culture.

As he wrote about it, the voice of reason, that is to say, submitted to the empire of science, is tenuous and fragile, but over time, by its own power of part, she must manage to make herself heard.

From this point of view, between epistemological and ideological, it is also a great political point, of symbolic politics, for Freud to strategically place the research field of psychoanalysis in the revolutionary region of knowledge and social practices of the historical overcoming of the value of philosophy in modernity through the emergence effective use of science and technology in social life, accentuated from the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries onwards.

As is well known, Walter Benjamin's perception of this internal and inexorable materialist overcoming of the field of culture was one of the centers of his understanding of modern culture. In this new order, symbolic spaces of subjectivation were quickly liquidated by the accelerated pace of technology, derived from scientific practice, as well as the advancement of the means of production and the organization of life, work and the market.

In an articulated way at this point, he formulated his social and critical oneirism, also influenced by psychoanalysis as a kind of dialectical image, where a time dreams its forms and walks, when faced with its ruins, necessarily, for its awakening historical – in a belated hope of broad transformation typical of the Hegelian-Marxist universe: “Balzac was the first to speak of the ruins of the bourgeoisie. But only surrealism released them to contemplation. The development of the productive forces shattered the symbols of the desires of the previous century, even before the monuments that represented them had collapsed. In the XNUMXth century, this development emancipated the configuring forms of art, just as in the XNUMXth century the sciences got rid of philosophy. (...) The evaluation of dream elements at the time of awakening is a model case of dialectical reasoning. That is why dialectical thought is the organ of historical awakening. Each epoch not only dreams of the next, but by dreaming it moves towards its awakening. It carries its own end within itself and – as Hegel already recognized – it develops it with cunning. In the commotions of the market economy, we begin to recognize the monuments of the bourgeoisie as ruins even before they crumble.”[iii]

In fact, this was an understanding that was for everything in the field of modern German critical culture, that of the true historical overcoming of the social value of philosophy, and, with other arguments, also of art, in the face of the ever greater acceleration of the time of technique, productivity and the economic management of life, as well as the gradual but inexorable takeover of culture by entities of meaning that increasingly expressed themselves in the commodity form, and their own internal pact of science, technique and productivity.

This is a classic perception of German thought forged in modernity, which originally erupts with Marx. It keeps within itself, and socially projects, the contradictions of the emergence of technical and economic practicality already fully present in the field of the French Enlightenment of the XNUMXth century, in the face of the attempt to integrate it into the traditional space of philosophy, which put the scientific truth of the world into question. catalog state in the design of Encyclopedia[iv]. Thus, philosophy began to contemplate its historical overcoming by the unlimited explosion of the universe of science and technology.

This understanding is a constant of thought that had some materialist attention to the process of social life in the modern world, now constantly destroyed and rebuilt. In fact, Benjamin pointed not only to a hermeneutic dimension of things, but to the fact that, already in the XNUMXth century, and in a truly revolutionary way from the XNUMXth onwards, science occupied and liquidated the social spaces of philosophy, by expressing itself strongly as productivity.

As, in a vigorous example, fifty years before the emergence of psychoanalysis – and its sweeping critique based on the ideology of the omnipotence of science “to what we hope in vain from philosophy” – we could already read in a lucid fragment of Heine: “The highest Sprouts of the German Spirit: Philosophy and Song – Time ran out, idyllic calm with it, Germany was spurred into motion – thought is no longer disinterested, into its abstract world blunt circumstance plummets – The railroad locomotive shudders our feeling, and so no song can dawn; the smoke chases away the songbird and the stench of gas lamps plagues the fragrant moonlit night”.[v]

The astonishing fragment catches in the air of history the exact moment when the advance of technology and life managed for speed and interest really dissolves the old ways of conceiving and symbolizing existence. And the target of the critical poet is the same as that of Walter Benjamin a hundred years later: the interested world of technology and science, the deconstructed life rebuilt under the new titanic, industrial and market reality, the advance of productivity, makes the traditional sense suspend of what philosophy and art were. The modern world, centered on productivity and on culture increasingly occupied by the life of things, with its new fetishist status, does away with any need for auratic production, finally concludes the XNUMXth-century philosopher.

The sciences got rid of philosophy. These are Benjamin's harsh words. The German political philosophers of Hegelian and Marxist extraction, also, not by chance, greatly impacted by Freud's psychoanalysis, did not need to quibble, refuse or deny the crisis of the place of philosophy in the world, in the extreme process of modernity. They openly enunciated it, in a self-ironic and almost insolent way, as a kind of critical and dialectical trump card of thought in the face of the progress of its own overcoming by the technical process and by the totalization of the administered life of the masses, in the world of the market and its new organizing industry. of culture. An effective world in which, in Heine's very precise terms, "thought is no longer disinterested, in its abstract world the crude circumstance collapses".

Every spiritual process is historical and is situated historically, and it is not by chance that at the apex of the time of the ideology of science and progress, with its world realized in its full potentialities and catastrophes of the class society of the new metropolises of the industrial capitalism of the XNUMXth century , Sigmund Freud will make a new pact between speculation, conceptual reflection and science, to give a new possible design of the human subject.

Freud was placed right on the great historical fold of such a much broader trend, that of interpenetration and the mutual game of recognitions and occultations between philosophy and science, from then on undeniable. In this gradual overcoming of modern times, one field practically takes all social values, while the other will become more and more a sphere of autonomy and specialization, almost similar to the autonomous sphere of art, a field relatively well isolated, and, to the despair of the Marxist critical tradition, effectively irrelevant from the point of view of social practices and their domain. In the modern universe of the practical life of human existence, science is wholly dominant.

Theodor Adorno, following the same path of historical crisis, realized precisely, by being in contact with the American social version of the discipline, the fact that psychoanalysis appropriated, by its own way of alluding as a foundation to some degree of science and technique , of the wider and more universal crisis of the life of philosophy.

For him, it was also perfectly possible to see in the minor public fate, and in the anti-dialectical hypostatization that psychoanalysts began to make of their knowledge, the very extreme moment of the crisis of philosophy in their time: “The repression of philosophy by science led, as if you know, to a separation of the two elements whose unity, according to Hegel, constitutes the life of philosophy: reflection and speculation. Reflective determinations are left with disenchantment in the realm of truth, and speculation is grudgingly tolerated there and only for the purpose of formulating hypotheses that are articulated in spare time and must be confirmed as soon as possible. (...) Not satisfied with this, however, the enterprise of science itself embodies speculation. Among the public functions of psychoanalysis this is not the last.[vi]

Psychoanalysis was also a way for science to frame, in a delimited sphere of object and method, the lost and anachronistic potential of philosophical theoretical fantasy, the impulse to speculation and its hope of freedom.

The psychoanalyst Wilfred Bion said that psychoanalysis was a creation of Freud that needed to be thought through. It was the necessary answer to a set of real and concrete problems at the symbolic level of the thinking capacity of its time. As Hegel said, it could not arrive before or after.

In fact, the impact of scientific revelation on the life of the industrial and liberal economy of the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries, and on the rapidly overcoming symbolic structures of the type ancien régime, forced a complete repositioning of the place and meaning of the world of ideas, which needed to be negotiated with the symbolic and social effectiveness of new practices, linked to the new empire of technology. Many thinkers were forced to relocate the splendid and highly ideal autonomy of philosophy's place in the world, in relation to the magic spell of the free social emergence of the sciences, which broadly redesigned its own reality.

If a whole philosophy derived from the Enlightenment was in fact thought of as being articulated to the political moment of the French Revolution, if many philosophers were, and each in their own way, philosophers of the revolution, internally to the systems of thought it was the limiting idea of ​​science that demanded its presence as a new guarantee of truth to the philosophical reality. Hegel's terms for his definition of philosophy, "the real knowledge of what actually is", are identical for the metaphysics of science, in which they are simply duplicated.

The pact between science and technique, between symbolic research and productivity, leveraged a historical process in which materialized ideas transformed the world effectively and faster, in a mere hundred years, than the potential rational and metaphysical critiques of philosophy could ever accomplish, at least in a historical time period embodied by the living body of the philosopher. Although Scheling and Gentz ​​saw in the French Revolution something like “the first practical triumph of philosophy”, “as the central fact of time”, in fact the revolutionary progress of ideas was conditioned to the rise of new money, determined by the situation of the new class. industrious already dependent on the constant expansion of science in the form of technology.

Marx was to demonstrate that the dynamic of capital accumulation, the destructive creative force of the world, was simply internally dependent on science. Perhaps only Descartes and Bacon, radically articulated to the very general movement of modernity at its roots, as philosophers in some measure mirrors of time, had some of their ideas about the human being put into effect by the new era of concrete symbolic efficacy of science, and of the new class of rational producers in the new world. These philosophers were also concrete thinkers of science. The other moderns were already philosophers of history, and therefore, irrefutably needed to place and place themselves in the face of concrete social efficiencies, of the gradual hegemony tending to the totalization of the management of the life of science in the world.

This is how Hegel, for example, needs to inscribe the idea of ​​science – evoked in an incredibly insufficiently questioned way, because in that historical passage there seemed to be nothing to question the sciences – in his thought that tries to merge the rational and the existing – what can it represent a conceptual derivation of the reason that descends to the existing of the real and in a second moment raises it to the effective of the technique, proper to science?

Already operating a living philosophy of history, science is perhaps effectively smuggled, without a break in continuity, as counterproof and a rational double, absolutely necessary, into its immense system of metaphysics of the subject in becoming and transformation: “The true figure in which truth exists can only be your scientific system. Working in the sense that philosophy approaches the form of science – and the goal in which it can leave its name of love of knowledge and being effective knowledge – that is the purpose that I assigned to myself. The inner need for knowledge to be science resides in its nature, and satisfactory explanation of this point can only be found in the exposition of philosophy itself.[vii] “For my part, I place the very reason for the existence of science in the self-movement of the concept”.[viii]

And even more: “I think, moreover, that everything that is excellent in the philosophy of our time rests its own value on scientificity, and even if others think otherwise, in reality it can only be valid in terms of scientificity. I can therefore hope that the present attempt to claim science for the concept and to present it in that element which is its own element will be able to break through by virtue of the internal truth of the thing”.[ix]

There is no doubt that science here was the neutral and positive measure, external, but that needed to be internalized, for the support and legitimation, between inside and outside itself, of the very life of philosophy. This guaranteed double should imply the concrete and historical impact of the taking over of the world by science, at least since the duplication of Newtonian mathematical revelations on the world of technique and productivity, which revolutionized the century in every way. At that moment science was the materiality of history.

Hegel, willingly conceiving his philosophy as a philosophy of effectiveness and of the real, and of the movement of the spirit towards its absolute development, which is the incorporation of its own becoming, saw no hiatus in the almost immediate incorporation of the idea of ​​science into work. intimate self-sustainability and self-deployment of philosophy's own concept. At that time philosophy still seemed to invoke the common measure of mutual origin, as self-sustaining forms of reason, philosophy and science. The experimental reflective arm of reason could unite again with its speculative and symbolic, metaphysical field, since, in fact, in some desired place, and as in the origin, they were a single impulse to the real expansion of the spirit.

Thus the raison d'être of science is the movement of the concept, science itself was figured as an integral expansion of philosophy, while science must be claimed for the concept, which means that philosophy must experience itself as a true science. Even the most radical negative conception of a spirit not fixed in its forms is scaled as a necessary process, capable of articulating itself as science, and at the heart of the transforming mediation, the idea of ​​science continues to be present as an ordering vanishing point:

The present exhibition has as its object only knowledge as a phenomenon. Therefore, it does not yet show itself as free Science, moving in its original form, but it can be considered, from this point of view, as the path of natural conscience that impels true knowledge. Or even as the path of the soul that traverses the succession of its figures as stations that are prefixed to it by its nature, so that it can manifest itself as Spirit and, through the total experience of itself, reach the knowledge of what she is in herself.[X]

And, to complete the identity of the movement of philosophy itself and its result, a result as science: “The succession of its figures that consciousness traverses on this path is the detailed history of the formation of consciousness itself for Science.”

The internal history of the formation of the subject of knowledge is the science of the formation of science. Hegel also redraws the foundations of Kant's epistemology, which had located, starting from the categories and faculties of reason, the field of the knowable and ordered the general categories proper a science, founding epistemology, and definitively placing philosophy face to face with the reality of science. And by locating the object and limits of the sciences and their plan of investigation of what can be known, philosophy prepared itself to be, to some extent, increasingly sucked into the interior of the idea of ​​science.

And, as has already been said, this duplicity in which science is the metaphor, still friendly, of the real legitimacy of philosophy was a great constant of time. The I of philosophy posited for itself the non-I of science as a movement of itself. Fichte, a man very present in the political culture of his time, would also write, in 1794, “On the concept of the doctrine of science or of the so-called philosophy”. Again, in limiting speculation about the foundations and nature of the pure I, the rational measure of the concept was equal to the scientific progress of knowledge, a modern way of saying the truth of reason. The aim was to elevate philosophy to the status of an evident science:

Scientifically positing a concept – and it is clear that here we are dealing with no other but the highest of all positings – is what I call it when one indicates its place in the system of the human sciences in general, that is, when it shows which concept determines its position and which other has its position determined by it. But it so happens that the concept of the doctrine-of-science can just as little have a place in the system of all the sciences as the concept of knowledge in general: on the contrary, it is itself the place of all scientific concepts and indicates to them their positions. in and of itself.[xi]

For Fichte, to think the founding subject of meaning in himself and his expansive movement over the world, also the subject of autonomy and historical emancipation, the task of his philosophy, is to think scientifically the foundation of what the general system of sciences puts . German idealism – which left a series of unidentified traces for psychoanalysis itself – was not only the philosophy of the revolution, as Marcuse thought it, it was, even more strongly and at every step of thought the philosophy – duplicated by the idea of science – of science itself. At all points of the project, task and conceptual mediations, mediation by the idea of ​​science, the modern double of reason, is present in the universe of that discourse.

The following passage, if taken seriously, would leave Freud in trouble regarding his way of questioning the split between philosophy and science, characteristic of his psychology of the unconscious, at a clear disadvantage for the field in science that would be philosophy. Perhaps the epistemological synthesis carried out by thinkers who invert the ratio between philosophy and science, such as Freud, would reveal its unstable foundations.

Evidently idealistic rationalism mediated at all points by the idea of ​​science, and even oriented towards it, did not see things like this: “Philosophy is a science – in this all descriptions of philosophy agree, just as they are divided in the determination of the object of this science. What if this disagreement stemmed from the fact that the very concept of science, which they unanimously attribute to philosophy, had not been fully developed? What if the determination of this single attribute, admitted by all, were fully sufficient to determine the concept of philosophy itself?[xii]

Perhaps psychoanalysis, which according to Freud was a science, did not have its concept fully determined, at least in that Fichtean way of the notion, of the central attribute of the system of true propositions that make up a science.

It is true that there were broad conditions of epistemological foundation that preceded and prepared the emergence of the psychoanalytic experience. Psychoanalysis is a section of reason and phenomena within a field, which in turn is itself a broad section within another, even broader field. The world from which Freud's discipline emerged was that of the original impact of the accelerated achievements in physics, chemistry and biology that emerged in the XNUMXth century, with the force of the realization of a new civilization on the idea and concept of the human body, characteristic of the modern medicine that was being founded.

The epistemological arm of naturwissenchaften post-Kantian theories was revolutionizing the century in a concrete way, much as it was happening with the surrounding social life itself. Freud is a direct heir, at first to his actual research, but also from an epistemological point of view to the principles of his psychoanalysis, to the famous scientific unification pact established by Hermann Von Helmholtz, and Ernst Brücke – the same professor who received Freud in his physiology laboratory when the young physician graduated, and, in a greater stroke of fortune, later referred him to study with Charcot in Paris – who defined the field of biological medical science of his time by establishing that everything represents and exists in the human body must be explained and thought through common physical chemical forces, simply present in nature; and also, Freud was heir to the agnostic spirit of the third builder of the medical materialist and rationalist field of the time, Emil Du Bois-Reymond, and his we ignore and will ignore the mysteries of the transformation of the substance of matter into force, the origin of life and the origin of consciousness.[xiii]

A fundamental agnosticism that defined the limits and interiority of the field of biological science, which in Freud's case was completed as an absolute atheistic profession of faith. These principled references were part of the possibilities for the emergence of psychoanalysis, and corresponded to the social expansion and constant differentiation of the sphere of science in the world, in this case, in the process of setting up medicine.

At that historical moment, science and its circuit of objects, practices and logic was already strong enough to dispense with any transcendental animism, deepening the rupture with the religious universe, and thus defining its real closed circuits of matter and apprehensible reason, in full evolution of the Kantian framework of limits, as the realm of its reality, in which everything could be known, including, from psychoanalysis, the foundations of the production of human psychic meaning.

This would be exactly the outline that Freud would make in the field of phenomena apprehensible by the universal order of accomplished science of his time.

But, beyond this general framework, a main background method organizer, the foundation of the psychoanalytic clinic itself and its particular way of approaching and founding its object in the human, the nature of the setting and the method of attention to the psychic subject, are right at the zero point of all phenomenal and theoretical development of what would become psychoanalysis. More than the categories of broad values ​​of the materialist, non-animist medicine of his time, the creation of the very thing of the place in which psychoanalysis would reveal itself, and from there would be formed, the creation of the setting-method, of the position and place of the analyst, is the historical act and founding thought of all real psychoanalysis.

And this point cannot be immediately attributed to Freud. It was related to the scientific interest of the young Freud in the field of hysteria, a human figure later grouped by him in the broader category of “defense neuropsychoses”, since the interest that emerged from his trip to Paris, in 1885, for studies with Charcot. The outstanding Viennese physician, fundamentally a clinician – physician to the Austrian royal family, physician to Johannes Brahms, physician to the university’s own medical colleagues – Josef Breuer, was the one who was actually there for the first time, as much later Giles Deleuze became I would refer to the psychoanalyst and pediatrician Donald Winnicott.

There was no doubt about Josef Breuer's real commitment to the field of the most solid scientific medical experience of the time, of Helmholtzian biological research on the human body, when in 1880 he dedicated himself for dozens of sessions and for about two years to the care and recognition of the human experience of hysteria, a pathological figure and also a formation proper to the cultural field of the century. At age 38, when he performed the Bertha Pappenheim treatment, who became universally known as Anna O. Studies on hysteria – written jointly with Freud and published only in 1895.

Josef Breuer had already carried out a number of important researches in classical medical physiology. He had established the reflexive nature and role of the vagus nerve in the process of breathing, in what became known as the Hering-Breuer physiological mechanism, and he had also discovered the role of the vestibular apparatus of the auditory system in the process of orientation and orientation. body balance. He was a true medical researcher of the most accurate science of his time, and, above all, a socially recognized clinician in an educated and informed urban environment.

For it would be this man who would first observe the phenomena of meaning, and the alternative operation of psychic functions and properties that articulated the totality of subjective life, body and symptom, in the opaque experience of classical nineteenth-century hysteria. It would be this inclination towards the patient, based on the way of operating and seeing the medical science of his time, however, aiming even more at the patient, leaning towards him, that would reveal what would be the first human and conceptual experience of psychoanalysis.

In the words of Freud: “Breuer was a physician, a disciple of the clinician Oppolzer. In his youth he had worked on the physiology of respiration under the guidance of Ewald Hering, and later, in the few hours of leisure afforded him by a vast medical practice, he happily occupied himself with experiments on the function of the vestibular apparatus in animals. Nothing in his education could lead one to expect that he would gain the first decisive inner understanding of the time-old riddle of hysterical neurosis and make a contribution of imperishable value to our knowledge of the human mind.”[xiv]

Working clinically for about two years following his patient's daily life, Breuer was able to observe at some point in the clinical process the transformation and dissipation of Bertha's various somatic symptoms, as she evoked past experiences, which also seemed to be linked to the very origin of the symptoms. For the first time, language and human presence implied changing the relationships of meaning between the properties of the psyche, memory, affection and symptom, and the very significant reality of the sick body. This dynamic of the new clinic made clear the pulsation of states of consciousness, instead of the pure idea of ​​consciousness in the abstract.

From this heterogeneous constitution of meaning presented in the relationship with the doctor, the human was no longer what it was. The human body was articulated to the field of the senses and experience, and the psychic properties were articulated, from the communication with the doctor, the protoanalyst, in levels of distance and relationships of meaning hitherto unknown. The experience of the psychoanalytic clinic that was inaugurated there proposed an open system of meanings, very counterintuitive and averse at all points to the general common sense of surface consciousness of oneself. A new order of intuitions and real phenomenal presence was needed, what Freud would later call “a large dose of personal interest, of medical libido”, to reorganize the model of the human, which was refounded with parameters not described for the physician. scientist before himself.

The clinical relationship and its agency of meaning, in the original case of psychoanalysis created by the doctor and the patient in a common work – and this is another mark of the origin of psychoanalysis on the whole of the discipline – established a point of view on the total experience of human subjectivity, including the body as a living symbolic anchorage and in displacement of the whole human thing, revealing a new picture of problems never thought of, turned into reason or knowledge. Never before has past experience, remembrance, affection and present symptom been in a real articulation in that way, the way of the hysteric before the doctor who received her, to the point of starting a new understanding of the broad condition of production of meaning in humans.

From the clinic, Breuer inaugurated the field of investigation and the figures of thought that twenty years later would make Freud famous, to the extent of his immense theoretical genius, as the founder of psychoanalysis. And Freud, at an advanced stage in the development of psychoanalysis itself, seems to have had an intuition of the prevalence of the Breuerian clinical thing: “We psychoanalysts, who have long been familiar with the idea of ​​dedicating hundreds of sessions to a single patient, cannot form a conception how new such a procedure must have seemed forty-five years ago. It must have required a great deal of personal interest and, if we may allow the expression, of medical libido, and it required, however, also a considerable degree of freedom of thought and certainty of judgment.”[xv]

Freud seems to approach here, with his own concepts, the perception of human uniqueness, the epistemology embodied in a biography, the particular and concrete fundamental intuition, a given capacity, which allowed Breuer to sustain himself for hundreds of clinical hours in a significant presence before the hysterical experience.

It was this presence, tending toward the neutral, but ethically oriented, that allowed the revelation as well as the transformation, never described, of his patient. there is a real noese intuitive, framed by ethics and scientific posture, but in fact a loving clinic, a loving ethics that crosses and perforates scientific ethics itself, which primarily cuts out the possibility of the analyst experiencing something together with his patient, in what Freud would later name as “ the unconscious”.

One of the most important technical moments, and therefore of some theoretical foundation, in the development of the understanding of Freud's psychoanalysis, from the clinical point of view, was the one in which he introduced time in the work of psychic transformation of psychoanalysis. This moment was relatively late in relation to the original foundations of Freudian psychoanalysis, and its negative unconscious, formed in conflict.

“It is necessary to give the patient time to get involved in the resistance now known, to work through it, to overcome it, continuing the work despite it, according to the fundamental rule of analysis. Only at the height of resistance can we, in common work with the analysand, discover the instinctual impulses that are nourishing it, of whose existence and power the patient is convinced through this experience. The doctor has nothing to do but wait and let things take a course that cannot be avoided, nor can it always be accelerated. (...) In practice, this elaboration of resistances can become a painful task for the analysand and a test of patience for the doctor. But it is the part of the work which has the greatest modifying effect on the patient, and which distinguishes psycho-analytic treatment from all influence by suggestion. Theoretically, one can compare it with the 'ab-reaction' of amounts of affect retained by repression, without which hypnotic treatment would remain ineffective”.[xvi]

In this way, the time of work, according to Freud, with its own determination, also seems to have a progress in which something is objectified, it cannot be avoided, nor can it be rushed. The analyst, as well as the patient, must settle in this time proper to the exchange of unconscious resistances for a new field of sense of self, and it requires patience on the part of the doctor and bearing the painful task, a work, a work of the time, a work that is time, on the part of the patient.

This is how this fundamental dimension, which definitively completed the meaning of the psychoanalytic clinic, was only fully named by Freud in 1914. More than thirty years after Breuer let himself remain, in the time presence that had an effect on the original experience of hysteria.

And, in the opening of the work, in which the time of elaboration of instinctual tensions, between regressive desire and repressive force, starts to occupy a privileged place in front of the instantaneous idea of ​​the power of the interpretation of the unconscious, a practice whose logic is that of a simple concreteness of direct cause and effect, as concretely occurs in the world of natural things, Freud recalls, not by chance, the very early days of psychoanalysis, and the cathartic method of Josef Breuer, from 1880: “It does not seem unnecessary to me to continually remind those who study psychoanalysis, the profound changes that the psychoanalytic technique has undergone since the beginning. In the first phase, that of Breuer's catharsis, the focus was placed on the moment of the symptom's formation, and there was a persistent effort to make the psychic processes of that situation reproduce, in order to bring them to a discharge through conscious activity. Remembering and abreacting, with the aid of the hypnotic state, were then the goals to be achieved. Then, after renouncing hypnosis, he set himself the task of discovering, from the analysand's spontaneous thoughts, what he could not remember. Resistance would be circumvented through the work of interpretation and communication of its results to the patient; the focus was maintained on the situations in which the symptoms had formed and those that were verified behind the moment in which the disease appeared, the abreaction fell into the background, seeming to be replaced by the expenditure of work that the analysand had to to do, in overcoming the criticism of his spontaneous thoughts to which he was obliged (in obedience to the fundamental psychoanalytic rule). Finally, the coherent technique of today was formed, in which the physician renounces highlighting a specific factor or problem and is content to study the psychic surface presented by the analysand, using the art of interpretation essentially to recognize the resistances that arise in it and make it clear. conscious awareness for the patient”.[xvii]

The process of clinical development, and the understanding of the dynamic life of the formation of resistances and transference in the presence of the analyst, evolved from a kind of taking possession and direct intervention in the matter of the past, to the acceptance of constant and open psychic processing of the patient with the analyst – and in an even more advanced horizon of the history of the psychoanalytic experience, post Ferenczi, of the analyst himself with the patient. There is an ever-increasing kind of gain in tolerance and in the dimension of temporality in the psychic process of the analytic couple.

What no longer fits is the anxiety of possessing the formation of the symptom and the immediate figuration of the positions at stake in psychic life, as still occurred in 1896, when Freud said in a dream to his patient Irma “I already gave you the solution, if you you don't get better, it's your fault”... This cure anxiety, this superego of intervention on the part of the analyst is in fact, as the process of the temporal evolution of the clinical thought makes clear, a fantasy of possession and control of the psychic space of the analyst. patient.

The fantasy of possessing a field that objectifies itself, of the subjective life of the other, in the form of the theoretical figuration of the unconscious, metapsychology and its multiple mediations, tended to give the analyst an idea of ​​a present clash, somewhat spatialized, of the figures and psychic instances, while the real process, finally, derived even from what would be the infinite lines of flight of the senses revealed in the analysis of the dream, implied a temporal journey through the signifying order of each one, and not any kind of strict causal solution to a present devoid of emotional experience.

From the psychoanalysis of control and the tendency towards the spatialization of psychoanalytical objects, one reached the psychoanalysis of time, dynamics and process. Instead of indicating stagnant forces, the patient's own elaboration, together with the analyst, of these forces, dynamics and self-images.

In this sense, when Freud recognizes the radical temporality of Breuer's clinic, "the hundreds of hours dedicated to the patient and how new this procedure was", he recognizes a strong point in which his science is not only made of the ability to observe dynamics and translate them into an objectifying logic of the unconscious thing.

Science, from this real open place, which is time, is not just made of theoretical mediation and its background scientific metaphysics, according to the terms of its time. It is also made up of the open time of waiting, of offering, of contemplation ethically guided by the idea of ​​science, but which cannot be reduced to science, of a value of humanity that awaits and offers itself to the significant displacement of the disease, of a presence that, by being present, already transforms it to some extent. It is made up of what a critic once noted about Shakespeare, the faculty of experiencing. Psychoanalysis is also made up of all the unconscious, ethical, aesthetic impulses that are contained in this inclination, this clinamen, from the analyst to the time of the encounter with the other.

For a long time, the epistemology of psychoanalysis was based on the ability to abstract and objectify, in the third person, as Georges Politzer said[xviii], psychoanalytical objects, translatable into a metaphor that corresponded to the name of natural phenomena historically translated by theoretical physics. Freud sought to discern the invisible, that which is not represented sensorially, and with his unusual scientific poetic power to configure the name of the device, nothing less than giving form and linguistic mediation, limit, to the thing in itself of the unconscious. In some way he believed that by defining and mastering the very thing of the psychic in the human, a true access, and perhaps the only effective one, to the human would have been opened.

And it is from the scientific image of the thing itself, constructed from the sensitive dynamics of the formation and interpretation of dreams, that he will refer his criticism to the impossibility of philosophy going there: “With this we reveal a very precise conception of the 'essence' of conscience; Becoming conscious is for us a particular psychic act, distinct from and independent of the process of composition or representation, and consciousness appears to us as a sensory organ that perceives content that exists elsewhere. It is possible to demonstrate that psychopathology simply cannot do without these basic assumptions”.[xx]

“[The] considerations about the structure of the psychic apparatus that we will make later, when we have observed that through the interpretation of dreams we can look into its interior as through a window”.[xx]

These two passages from The interpretation of dreams reveal the first moments of the fundamental conceptual folding of the book: from the living psychological dynamics and the meaning of the analyzed dream for the dreamer, the worked and complete meaning of the analysis, to the objective model of the unconscious, glimpsed as through a window, a window that is the very dynamics and practice of dream interpretation. This is what Freud understood by science. From the unusual psychic phenomena of the sense of dreams, constructed by the clinical state and its real intuition of what is elsewhere in the subject, originally established by Josef Breuer, Freud seeks to reach the theoretical nature and the very structure of the apparatus, the language system objective of the metapsychological chapter number VII of the book, which for a long time overshadowed many as being the very thing of psychoanalysis.

Glimpsing, as through a window, the physical reality of the productivity of the unconscious, extracting from psychic phenomena, in this case the many jumbled facets of consciousness, hallucinosis, memory, childhood and dream desire, the laws of the thing itself that move them, the thing named “psychic apparatus”, is exactly the metaphysical logic unfolding proper to science, deducing the forces of nature, the universal force of gravity, for example, from the phenomenon that expresses it, the falling apple, for example.

Forces, energy, dynamics, instance, object, resistance, transference, condensation, displacement, conversion, were some of the terms of basic symbolization of what was understood to be the formation of psychoanalysis in a plane close to the metaphysics of the natural sciences, in search of its psychic reality. Behind these terms, this language that had the physiognomy of the science of the time, it was perfectly possible to recognize, with some genetic work, the world before Freud, of Wundt, Fechner, Herbart, Helmholtz, Brücke, Du Bois-Reymond. And behind them, Newton and Darwin's original explosion of modern sense.

Desire, censorship, defense, moral negativity, symbolization, identification, narcissism, Oedipus, infantile sexuality, elaboration, work of mourning, among others, were, in another direction, terms of “metaphorization” that approached and touched on cultural dynamics, symbols to a degree away from the purest and most fundamental terms that tried to translate the psychic experience with the concreteness of the names of natural things, and their “common physics and chemistry”.

For a long time, the epistemology of psychoanalysis focused on the historical nature and ideological commitments of this naming, of this work of notation of the psychic thing, as Bion said, as if the discipline were entirely confused with its desire for objectification, always walking firmly on the tightrope of hypostasis, which also expressed the fantasy of control, if possible immediate, without time, of the analyst's presence over the patient's psychic life.

This way of directing the symbolic life of psychoanalysis and its epistemological foundation proved to be partial. He splits something vital about the time offered and the analyst’s inclination towards the patient, the “medical libido” that Freud refers to about Breuer, in addition to being committed to the ideology of efficacy and the domination of nature by the scientific norm that actually identifies. It is an objectifying realism. He carries the deep Western tradition of enlightenment as power, he aims to conjure up natural forces by consciously yielding to their recognition. Every problem arises, for the nature of the science of psychoanalysis, when the objective forces of nature described are in fact a true and incarnated other, subjectively intact, even if living under the experience of neurosis.

A whole later tradition of understanding psychoanalysis, by psychoanalysts themselves, ranging from Ferenczi to Winnicott, from Searles to Masud Khan, from Marion Milner to Pierre Fedida, from Pontalis to Radmila Zygouris, from Bion himself, tries at some point and from some way to restore this dimension of receiving and acknowledging the primary nature of the analytic bond, of the true noese psychoanalysis clinic.

So, when Freud belatedly perceives, not the impulse of knowledge, but Breuer's contemplative dimension and the loving pact of care, aesthetic ethical dimensions that found the place of psychoanalysis, and made it possible, and in a way made possible the patient herself, an entity that the crisis of that culture and its hegemonic medical scientific epistemology truly barred recognition, he is already strong enough to evoke another founding principle of psychoanalysis, perhaps beyond science and his own way of naming and positioning things, for his domain.

“It was in 1889 that luck placed an unusual patient in his hands, a young woman of greater than normal intelligence, who had fallen ill with severe hysteria while caring for her sick father. It was only about fourteen years later, in our joint publication, Studies on Hysteria (1895) (…) that the world learned of the nature of his treatment of this celebrated 'first case', of the immense care and patience with which he applied the technique, once he had discovered it, until the patient was freed from all symptoms incomprehensible insights of his illness, and what internal understanding he obtained, in the course of his work, of the mental mechanisms of neurosis”.[xxx]

We know that Freud reacted strongly to the fact that Breuer did not follow him in the central foundation of unconscious contradiction processes in the sexual dimension of the human. This was, in fact, the central and background theoretical entity that organized the notation system, and made it possible, at the very least, to reveal the phenomenal order of infantile sexuality, so evident in children, but until Freud was strictly forbidden from cultural access. The sexual axiom allowed the development of metapsychology, providing it with a fundamental principle that had a concrete human value, and allowed the description of a number of cultural problems of immense interest.

Freud resented the clinical master of his youth, Breuer, for not accepting the sexual underpinnings of the processes he actually discovered through clinical ethics. In epistemological theoretical terms, Freud criticized the fact that Breuer did not give a real dimension, in the living intensity of the human sexual, and a productive theoretical dimension, in the very nature of psychic reality, of the place of the sexual in the whole system of the unconscious.

However, in all the passages brought above, from Freud's recollection of Breuer in 1925, the value of what matters in the psychoanalytic experience seems to be indicated, even if tenuously, in what is more precisely around the theoretical status of the thing in question. itself of the psychic mechanisms discovered through the clinical relationship.

In these passages Freud speaks explicitly of qualities of the encounter such as “immense care and patience”, of the “demand of a great deal of self-interest”, of something that he translated in terms of his own theorization as a great amount of “medical libido”, beyond the mysterious psychic action of "discovery". He speaks of how new “the procedure” of “devoting hundreds of sessions” to a single patient was and of a “considered degree of freedom of thought”. He speaks in the interstices of his larger discourse on the unconscious of ethical-aesthetic qualities of the clinic and the disposition, inclination, of the doctor to experience, in time, with his enigmatic, human patient.

In another passage he seems to evoke the personal secret, the biographical element of the concept, so proper and so intimate to psychoanalysis, when he comments that, about Breuer “nothing in his education could lead one to expect that he would reach the first decisive internal understanding of the enigma , old as the times, of hysterical neurosis and made a contribution of imperishable value to our knowledge of the human mind”. Then he responds to this point, indicating the breadth of cultural, perhaps even philosophical, view of the man who, apparently in a mysterious way, had the first internal, ontological and conceptual understanding, for psychoanalytic knowledge of the psyche in the psychoanalytic clinical way: "He, however, was a man of opulent and universal endowments, and his interests extended in many directions far beyond his professional pursuits."

In these passages he seems to have an intuition, perhaps even jealousy, of Breuer's mysterious human moment, which allowed him to get in touch with the ethical-aesthetic, poetic dimensions, which led him to establish the place of psychoanalysis, in himself and in his patient. .

The human element that allowed the first man to live the psychoanalytic experience is a mystery, that of the inscription of biography in the psychoanalytic concept. But how this experience came about is well known. In fact, it implied care, personal interest, medical libido, dedication and patience with the other's working time. Besides, what Freud personally valued in a particular way, “a considered degree of freedom of thought and certainty of judgment” that allowed “the decisive internal understanding of the enigma”, the capacity of abstraction of the object of the psychic reality, against all prejudice, common or scientific, which covered such an understanding.

And, as is known, this was the main path followed by Freud himself.

Perhaps, in order to understand in our point the most characteristic element of science in the Breuerian clinic, and which seems to have escaped Freud for so many years, it is possible to evoke another production of philosophy, from the same universe of German culture, which thinks the meaning of science quite differently from the universe of universal enlightenment proper to German idealism. That “philosophy of the revolution” of the beginning of the XNUMXth century was equally, in all dimensions, as background and as figure, a “philosophy of science”, or, reciprocally, it was the original historical emergence, so dear to the social future of the thing, of the idea in the world of a “science of philosophy”.

Precisely contemporary with the first psychoanalysis, uncommitted to the fate of enlightenment universal, averse to all metaphysics of truth, thinking from the very Dionysian problematics in search of a general transmutation of values, incomplete, certainly elitist, for what would become a new configuration of the experience of modernity, Nietzsche produced a series of fragments, hammered diatribes, also about the value, and the relative hidden values, of the idea and practice of science in his time.

His dissolving, genealogical conceptual ironies could surround and negatively mediate any existing object or social practice, especially the hegemonic ones, so that he could precisely target the core of the integrity of a reason that served the calculation is the theoretical construction, the basis of any possibility. of science, as in the famous question: “it is finally time to replace the Kantian question 'How are synthetic judgments possible? beforehand?' by another question: 'Why is belief in such judgments necessary? – that is to say, to conceive that for the purposes of preserving the essence of our species such judgments have to be believed as true; with what, of course, could still be false judgments! Or, to put it more clearly, and in a cruder and more radical way: synthetic judgments beforehand they should by no means 'be possible': we have no right to them, in our mouth they are pure false judgments. But, certainly, the belief in its truth is necessary, as a facade belief and an appearance that is part of the perspective-of-life perspective”.[xxiii]

The irrationalist profession of faith, which abandons in origin the modern rational foundations of logical, transcendental judgment, transforming them into necessities of belief, can only complete the process of meaning itself as a torsion of reason, towards a reason that pierces all and every possible position of truth, and produces as an image a life conceived as perspective-optics, necessarily plural, conflictual, political at root, unstable and incomplete in itself. As we know, all this will be projected on the idea of ​​a biological reason, conflicting, in constant dispute, producing the support of local and strategic truths as a search for the only truth that moves, the will to power, which can also be read as the will to power. .

Such a universe of reversal of the ideal potency, founded in itself, of the order of reason in a set of disparate organic forces, always charged with interest, which will be articulated archaeologically as the hidden foundation of the strategies of truth, which aim at more power, will , in the Nietzschean way of seeing things, taking possession of every possibility of producing knowledge – in a subject who is the product of an ever-living dialectic of the illogical and the extra-rational, interested gain – of every production of some knowledge: “The sequence of thoughts and logical conclusions, in our brain of now, corresponds to a process and struggle of impulses, which in themselves are all very illogical and unfair: we usually only know the result of the combat: so fast and so hidden it unfolds now this ancient mechanism in us”.[xxiii]

“The strength of knowledge is not in its degree of truth, but in its age, its incorporation, its character as a condition of life”. [xxv]

This opens up a field of radical tabula rasa of self-sustaining foundations, of the conditions of possibility, of reason itself. The old way of conceiving reason will be displaced, in an articulation of origin, genetics, to a new order of corporeal reason – drive, for the desire and desire for power, and aesthetics, for the Dionysian appearance, aiming to realize the being itself as a work of art. These new, ontological modes of reason will occupy, in Nietzsche, the place of any practical moral reason.

And they will negotiate, in another key, and with immense irony, the scientific ethics of the time, and its impact of emotional fantasy on the human – which also interested Hegel a lot – with the universe, alienated from it, of the non-true symbolic figuration of the art: “Our last gratitude to art – If we had not declared the arts good and invented this kind of cult of the untrue: the understanding of universal untruth and mendacity, which is now given to us by science – the understanding of illusion and of error as a condition of existence that knows and feels – could not have been tolerated. Loyalty would result in disgust and suicide. But now our loyalty has an opposite power, which helps us to deflect such consequences: art as goodwill towards appearance”.[xxiv]

According to Nietzsche, in registering impulses and the desire for vital meaning, science also owes art something of its own ability to be sustained in the living. The ability to be loyal to the negative dissolution of science, its constant dissolution of reality and life, is fed by the possibility of a good will, typical of what was offered to the arts, a certain type of satisfaction with the potentials of appearance, of that which that effectively exists as untrue, and that interested the philosopher so much. Like a magic stroke of the spirit, the field of art, of the non-true, appears somewhere as a double of the field of science, of the limiting negative production of the true.

In fact, this Nietzschean dialectic of potency easily exchanges the constitutive and universal effects of the effectiveness of reason for anything that is, whatever is of the order of appearance, that sustains its own good will, measured by the biopolitical ruler of the increase of potency.

Finally, this true reason, quite the reverse of all reason, corporeal, vital and unconscious, should fully reach the valuation itself, the background fantasy, the metaphysics itself, of science, which was everywhere in time: “(…) whence then could science get its unconditioned belief, and its conviction, which rests upon it, that truth is more important than anything else, than any other conviction? Precisely this conviction could not have arisen if truth and untruth had both constantly shown themselves to be useful: as is the case. Therefore – the belief in science, which is now incontestably there, cannot have taken its origin from such a utilitarian calculation, but, rather, despite having been constantly demonstrated the uselessness and dangerousness of the 'will to truth', of ' truth at all costs'. (…) Consequently, 'truly willing' does not mean 'I don't want to be deceived', but rather – there is no choice – 'I don't want to deceive, not even myself': – and with that we are on the ground of morals. For it is enough to fundamentally ask yourself: 'Why don't you want to deceive?', especially if there were the appearance – and there is this appearance – that life depends on appearance, I mean, on error, imposture, disguise, blindness, self-blindness, and if, on the other hand, the great form of life had always shown itself, in fact, on the side of the most unscrupulous polytropoi. Such a purpose could, perhaps, mildly interpreted, be a quixotism, a little enthusiastic folly; but it could also be something even worse, that is, a destructive principle, hostile to life… 'Will to truth' – this could be a veiled will to death. Thus the question: why science? It leads back to the moral problem: why morality in general, if life, nature, history are 'immoral'? Undoubtedly, the truthful, in that reckless and ultimate sense, as belief in science presupposes, thereby affirms a world other than that of life, nature and history; and, in so far as it affirms this 'other world', how? Doesn't it need, precisely with that, to... deny its reverse, this world, our world? – that we, today’s connoisseurs, the godless and anti-metaphysicians, also draw our fire from the bonfire that an age-old belief ignited, that Christian belief, which was also Plato’s belief, that God is the truth, that the truth is divine… But what if precisely this becomes more and more discredited, if nothing else proves to be divine, other than error, blindness, lies – if God himself proves to be our longest lie?[xxv]

Science was thus the metaphysical substitute for God and the final, modern historical resolution of the divinity idea of ​​truth. Contrary to what he says about his negative disposition towards reality, his humility in the face of what he is, science would be, for Nietzsche, the ultimate support of the moral power of the field of truth. And, in this direction, it simply ignores everything that exists, that serves life and that cannot be operated by the violent cutting, and by the ultimate morality, of the truth in its own order. In fact, viewed from this perspective it was the final major achievement of the Western moral metaphysical tradition.

Also, one sees in the passage, the fixed imposition of power, desire for power?, in the order of science, “which is now incontestably there”, on human dimensions that are not subject to truth, among which Nietzsche aligns life, history and, for the scandal of the symbolic and social field that was Freud's, nature... Nietzsche seems to be just one step away from recognizing the totalitarian universe of the imposition of the measurement order, of statistics, of abstract exchange value, of scientific management of culture and the organization of life, which through the metaphysical unfolding of the idea of ​​science into the idea of ​​progress, established the beacons of the fully enlightened world, “a resplendent catastrophe”, “a constant accumulation of ruins”.

And if we look at the situation of psychoanalysis through this prism – exactly as Theodor Adorno did in some important fragments of minimum morality[xxviii] – from the point of view of its uncritical commitment to the machine of the world of science, a psychoanalysis that understands itself as a pure technique, whose texture is confused in the world with the ideological realization of the social power of science, averse to the dialectical potentialities that it recognized in the human, we arrive at an embarrassing sphere of reification of the Freudian discipline, which in fact emerged historically.

This internal dialectic of submission of psychoanalysis to its pure technical dimension, its metaphysics, also aligned the discipline socially, as an interested mask, with something from the world of power, as is characteristic of the social being of science, which, however, it also allowed for in-depth criticism.

And finally, in this turn of decentralizations and perforations of the ethics at the foundation of science, we arrive at the point where Nietzsche, himself able to be operated dialectically, also offers in his transvaluation of values ​​a possible new order of epistemological reason, of a possible trans-epistemology: “Doesn't the discipline of the scientific spirit begin with not allowing oneself any more convictions? and unconditional, which sacrifices all other convictions to itself? It is seen that science also rests on a belief, there is no science 'without presuppositions'. The question, whether truth is necessary, must not only already be answered in the affirmative beforehand, but affirmed to such a degree that this proposition, this belief, this conviction reaches expression in it: 'Nothing is more necessary than the truth, and in proportion to it everything else has only a second-order value'. This unconditioned will to truth: what is it? Is it the will not to be deceived? Is it the will not to deceive? For the will to truth could also be interpreted in this last way: assuming that under the generalization 'I don't want to deceive' the particular case 'I don't want to deceive myself' is also included. But why not cheat? But why not let yourself be deceived?[xxviii]

Psychoanalysis, which deals with truths and appearances, with immeasurable distances from oneself and with immense psychic intensities, with intersubjectivity and with a true creation of meaning referred to the subject, with transfiguration of values ​​and the ethical assumption of one's own desire from the recognition of the dialectic of personal contradictions, which always carries its social moment, is indeed a modality of knowledge production that has much to reflect on this fundamental criticism of the conditions of stabilization of some scientific order of discourse.

What I have been trying to demonstrate, and Nietzschean trans-epistemology allows us to better define it, is that one can only understand the emergence of the Breuerian clinical process, and its difference from the theoretical destiny that Freud soon imprinted on the thing of the unconscious, if we consider an ethics particular background desire that, even articulated to scientific ethics, crosses it, positioning it in another place of the human. Something a little like what Nietzsche did with the field of science itself.

Yes, because, as Nietzsche said, “science rests on a belief, there is no science without presuppositions”. And this is exactly what the difference between Breuer and Freud makes clear: the two foundations of psychoanalysis due to each of these two men are in fact founded on different foundation assumptions of science. And yet, interestingly, both background vertices, assumptions of different beliefs, belong to the same science, to psychoanalysis.

In fact, was Breuer more radically open to that “not allowing himself convictions about the other” – in the limit suspension of the will to power? -, a radical opening to the human other, an offer of oneself to the foreigner, to the sick and the weak, to the morally defective for the theoretical system of medical convictions of the time. This primordial inclination, not allowing oneself to be convinced, was itself the conviction that the clinic's gesture of presence and suspension of judgment, a certain modality of love, could go there.

The basic value, the presupposition and belief of that new clinical science, was the loving offer of oneself, about the scientific way of allowing oneself to access the mystery of the other. As such, it also carried out, as a scientific mode itself, that other Nietzschean foundation of the meaning of things, that “with doing well and wanting well, on those who in some way already depend on us (that is, are used to to think of us as their causes); we want to increase its potency, because that way we increase ours”[xxix]. Breuer's science was radically founded on the assumption of doing good, increasing powers.

Freud also took some time to admit that the work of the patient under analysis was moved exactly by the very love he expressed for his objects. However, as Ferenczi brought to the psychoanalytic concept, admitting that the analyst's work was also moved in some founding place of his own science by a certain modality of love, perhaps Freud never managed to do so.

However, everything seems to indicate, based on the clinical experience shared by the doctor and the patient at the time, from the true clinical noesis of the first psychoanalysis and its first articulations of meaning about human reality, that Breuer actually carried out the Fichtean model of the development of the erudite, wise or intellectual, in culture, which, finally and in principle, he left as a legacy to Freud: a truly philosophical dimension of things of sense was articulated to a philosophical-historical dimension in front of an other, to become properly, finally, a simply historical dimension of human things[xxx]. The creation of psychoanalysis in the world of advanced modernity.

*Tales Ab´Sáber He is a professor at the Department of Philosophy at Unifesp. Author, among other books by Dreaming restored, forms of dreaming in Bion, Winnicott and Freud (Publisher 34).

Originally published in Philosophemes II, org. Jamil Ibrahim Skandar and Rita Paiva, São Paulo: Editora Unifesp, 2016.


[I] S. Freud. The interpretation of dreams, translation by Renato Zwick, Porto Alegre: LPM, 2012, p. 166. (

[ii] See, for example, Karl Schorske, “Politics and Parricide in Freud's Interpretation of Dreams”On Vienna Fin-de-Siecle, São Paulo: Unicamp and Companhia das Letras, 1989 (; the work of William MacGratt Politics and Hysteria, Porto Alegre ( Medical Arts, 1988 and Freud, thinker of culture, by Renato Mezan, São Paulo: Brasiliense, 1985 (

[iii] W. Benjamin, “Paris, capital of the XNUMXth century”, in Walter Benjamin, São Paulo: Ática, 1985, p. 40. This famous passage by Benjamin seems in fact to be a redrawing, post-psychoanalytical, and that leaves the untransferable trace of an author, of that beautiful, and Benjaminian, passage from Hegel: “But, just as in the child, after a long and peaceful period of nourishment, the first breath – a qualitative leap – breaks this continuity of merely quantitative progress and the child is then born, as well as the spirit that develops. cultivates grows slowly and silently towards the new figure and disintegrates piece by piece its preceding world. Only isolated symptoms reveal its shock. The frivolity and boredom that take hold of what still remains, the indeterminate presentiment of something unknown, are the precursor signs that something different is approaching. This slow crumbling, which did not alter the physiognomic features of the whole, is interrupted by the dawn which, in a flash, discovers at once the structure of the new world.” The phenomenology of the spirit, translation by Henrique C. de Lima Vaz, São Paulo: Abril Cultural, 1974, p. 16.

[iv] To remember the new commitment between philosophy, science and intellectual life, we can pay attention once again to the positive value, without halftones, of the famous title: Encyclopédie, ou dictionnaire raisonné des sciences, des arts et des métiers, par une société de gens de lettres.

[v] Heinrich Heine, Hey, huh?, translated by André Vallias, São Paulo: Perspectiva, 2011, p. 282 (

[vi] T. Adorno, Minimal Moralia, fragment 42, “Freedom of Thought”, São Paulo: Ática, 1992, p. 58 (

[vii] GWF Hegel, The phenomenology of the spirit, translation by Henrique C. de Lima Vaz, São Paulo: Abril Cultural, 1974, p. 13.

[viii] Same, pg. 44.

[ix] Same, pages 44-45.

[X] Same, pg. 50.

[xi] JG Fichte, The principle of the doctrine of science, translation by Rubens Rodrigues Torres Filho, São Paulo: Abril Cultural, 1973, p. 24.

[xii] Same, pg. 15.

[xiii] VIEW Introduction to Freudian epistemology. Paul-Laurent Assoun, Rio de Janeiro: Imago, 1983.

[xiv] “Josef Breuer” (1925), Standard Brazilian Edition of Complete Works, Vol. XIX, , Rio de Janeiro: Imago, 1980, p. 349.

[xv] Same, pgs. 349-350.

[xvi] S. Freud., “Remember, repeat and elaborate” (1914), Sigmund Freud, Complete Works, Vol. X, translation by Paulo Cézar de Souza, São Paulo: Companhia das Letras, 2010, pgs. 207 and 209.

[xvii] Same, pg. 191.

[xviii] VIEW Critique of the Foundations of Psychology: The Psychology of Psychoanalysis, Georges Politzer, Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press, 1994.

[xx] St. Freud, The interpretation of dreams, on. cit., page 165.

[xx] Same, pg. 240.

[xxx] S. Freud, “Josef Breuer”, on. cit., p. 349.

[xxiii] F. Nietzsche, Beyond Good and EvilOn incomplete works, translation by Rubens Rodrigues Torres Filho, selection of texts by Gérard Lebrun, São Paulo: Abril Cultural, 1978, p. 270 (

[xxiii] Nietzsche, the gay scienceOn on. cit. page 202.

[xxv] Same, pg. 200.

[xxiv] Same, pg. 197.

[xxv] Same, pg. 213. Here it is interesting to remember the title of this fragment: “To what extent are we still devout”.

[xxviii] As in the aforementioned fragment 42, “Freedom of Thought”: “Whatever happens to someone is good enough to allow specialists to decide whether the one who produced such a thought is a compulsive character, an oral type or a hysterical one. Due to the loosening of responsibility, resulting from its disconnection from reflection, from the control of understanding, speculation itself is left as an object to science, whose subjectivity is extinguished along with it. To the extent that thought allows itself to be reminded of its unconscious origins by the administrative scheme of analysis, it forgets that it is thought. T. Adorno, minimal morality, op. cit., p. 58.

[xxviii] Same, pg. 212.

[xxix] Same, pg. 193.

[xxx] JG Fichte, The Scholar's Destiny, translation by Ricardo Barbosa, São Paulo: Hedra, 2014 (

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