The Absence of the Sexual Relationship: A Transcendental Invariant of the Human Species?

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Abstract

Is what psychoanalysis calls the ‘absence of the sexual relationship’ the basic transcendental invariant of the speaking animal? Or should it be understood as a historical product? Also, assuming that language is structurally incomplete, and therefore that Homo sapiens cannot avoid the dialectic of semblance and truth, does this necessarily entail that the absence of meta-language always correspond to the absence of the sexual relationship? In this article I will show how, in his Seminars of the late 1960s and early 1970s, Lacan develops two different narratives.

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