Being for the Other: Emmanuel Levinas, Ethical Living and Psychoanalysis

Being for the Other: Emmanuel Levinas, Ethical Living and Psychoanalysis

by Paul Marcus

Paperback(New Edition)

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"I am definitely not a Freudian," declared Levinas in an interview. And yet, as Marcus passionately argues, Levinas's path-breaking ethical writings can profoundly enhance theoretical and clinical psychoanalysis. Like Freud, Levinas was focused on personal existence, on those issues of ultimate value and meaning that are central to what it means to be a human being at its best. Both thinkers were interested in helping to create the conditions of possibility for human beings to be kinder, gentler, stronger, and more reasonable in the face of the harshness, chaos, and moral challenges that we all face in our personal lives and on the world scene. This book aims to contribute to the development of a complementary paradigm to mainstream psychoanalysis, one that is based on the Levinasian assumption that the self is not fundamentally and firstly "for oneself," as psychoanalysis usually puts forth, but, rather, responsibility for the Other—ethics, is "the essential, primary and fundamental structure of subjectivity." The author illustrates his thesis—that the self is "hostage" to the other, that psychopathology is "ethical blunting," and treatment success is the enhanced capacity to love—with fascinating clinical vignettes and insights derived from his work as a psychoanalyst.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780874627633
Publisher: Marquette University Press
Publication date: 11/01/2008
Edition description: New Edition
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 1.25(h) x 9.00(d)

About the Author

Paul Marcus, Ph.D. is a supervising and training psychoanalyst at the National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis specializing in the treatment of difficult teenagers and young adults, trauma, high-conflict couples and divorce. He is a frequently used court-appointed forensic evaluator in New York Supreme and Family Courts. Dr. Marcus has authored/edited fifteen books, most recently, How to Laugh Your Way Through Life: A Psychoanalyst's Advice.

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