Anthropological Aspects of Subjectivity

Suzi Adams

in Castoriadis's Ontology

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9780823234585
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780823240739 | DOI:

Series: Perspectives in Continental Philosophy

Anthropological Aspects of Subjectivity

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The following two chapters address the creative imagination in its two, mutually irreducible poles: the radical imagination of the psyche and the radical imaginary of the social-historical, respectively. This chapter focuses on the radical imagination of the psyche. Castoriadis elaborates the radical imagination as the basis of an anthropology of subjectivity, leaning on—and reconstructing—Freudian psychoanalysis in the process. In elucidating the psyche, Castoriadis uncovers the psychic monad as a deeper, more primordial layer than Freudian unconscious. The radical imagination appears as the psychic flux of representations; the representations are elaborated as creations ex nihilo, which in turn presume the psyche to be defunctionalized. The psyche encapsulates Castoriadis's understanding of human modes of being as magma; indeed it was originally in relation to the psyche that he first used the term. Representations form (proto)meaning, which, through the process of social-sublimation encounter the other dimension of meaning: social imaginary significations.

Keywords: psychic flux; psychic monad; radical imagination; sublimation; Freud; psyche; Kant

Chapter.  7331 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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