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Main page » Non-Fiction » Becoming a Subject - Reflections in Philosophy and Psychoanalysis

Becoming a Subject - Reflections in Philosophy and Psychoanalysis


What sorts of questions are these? Certainly philosophical. They burrow into central issues in moral philosophy: freedom of the will, the "self," self-knowledge, the relations between reason and passion, between autonomy and self-knowledge, issues that form roughly the second half of the book. They lead also into metaphysics and epistemology: Is subjectivity incompatible with objectivity? Are subjects not also objects in the real world? As such, how are they to be treated? Would it be possible, in theory, for a creature to become a subject in the absence of relationships with other subjects? But the questions are also practical. In particular they are at the heart of psychoanalysis both as a theory of the mind, and as a therapy which aims at maximizing the ideals of autonomy and self-knowledge implicit in the very idea of a "subject." 
One of the guiding premises of Becoming a Subject is that philosophical investigation into the specifically human way of being in the world cannot separate itself from investigations of a more empirical sort. Cavell brings together for the first time reflections in philosophy, findings in neuroscience, studies in infant development, psychoanalytic theory, and clinical vignettes from her own psychoanalytic practice.

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Tags: subject, things, human, herself, under, herself, Reflections, Philosophy, Subject, doing