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(articles by Pierre-Gilles Guéguen, Agnès Aflalo, Alan Rowan, Thomas Svolos)
On the Eurofederation of Psychoanalysis
A little history
The European School of Psychoanalysis (EEP) was born in 1990 anticipating the birth of the WAP (1992). Founded as the European Other of the ‘Ecole de la Cause Freudienne’(ECF), it brought together many groups –in Europe and beyond- referring themselves to the Lacanian Orientation one way or another. Since its creation three Schools were born from these groups, welcome by the EEP : the Escuola Lacaniana de Psicoan?lysis (ELP) in Spain, created in 2000, the Scuola Lacaniana di Psichoanalsi (SLP) created in Italy in 2002, , and the New Lacanian School (NLS)created in 2003, bringing together many countries in Europe and elsewhere,.
In 2008 the EEP decided to become the European Federation of the Schools of Psychoanalysis (FEEP). The ECF accepted to be part of it. Henceforth a Federation exists grouping together the four Schools of the WAP in Europe, the aim of which was, as defined by its first President, Vicente Palomera, to create “an establishment which is more unified and effective, of European dimension, to fight against the ideology of evaluation and its legislative initiatives, to fight certain health policies implemented in mental health in the member states of the European Union”.
The first political action of the FEEP was the constitution of the “European Observatory” with a view to debate and oppose “throughout all Europe, the cognitive advances of a ‘politics of civilization’, through the bureaucracies of the State”. The Journal Mental and the PIPOL 4 Encounter of the Freudian Field organized in 2009 by the FEEP were the major tools of that policy.
Moreover the FEEP, in coordination with the WAP, held some extimate functions for the European Schools. The Cartel of the Pass in Spanish was thus registered as a Cartel of the FEEP. The readers of the Journal des Journées will remember the debate which that provoked in the ELP around the tension between the ‘local’ and the ‘distant. A ‘Seminar WAP- FEEP’ was also held in Italy within the SLP, facilitated by Eric Laurent, at the time President of the WAP. What was at stake was the handling of questions in relation to the School.
From FEEP to the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis
The transformation of the FEEP into the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis (EFP), in June 2010 during the AGM of the FEEP, was the outcome of a meeting with Jacques-Alain Miller in January 2010 in Brussels, with a view to prepare PIPOL 5. It was the answer to a reading of the present political reality concerning psychoanalysis, both ‘internally’ and ‘externally’.
Externally, the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis translates a will to move from the stage of ‘observation’, which was quite necessary, to the stage of action. The generalized ideology of evaluation, the propagation of CBT, the legislative initiatives concerning the psy-field attacking psychoanalysis, the attempts of the rising forces of the neurosciences and the psychotropic drugs market to marginalize the talking cures, are the many parts of a monstrous machine. It does not suffice to study, criticize or denounce it any longer. Now is the time to give our community of Lacanian orientation the consistency of a grain of sand which would come to lodge itself in these infernal wheels at a European level, as we cannot limit ourselves anymore to the local battle in each country, even if this remains evidently important.
Internally, the transformation of the FEEP into EFP takes into account the ‘Paris Event’ of November 2009. On the one hand, that event put back at the centre of the psychoanalyst’s ethics and training his relationship with the unconscious, with the pass as its horizon. On the other hand, it gave a platform to ‘the new comers’ to speak out, the ones Jacques-Alain Miller called ‘the ‘Forum generation’ who attached themselves to the ECF through its political involvement. The EuroFederation has the ambition to uphold the paradoxical knotting between a collective and wide scope political involvement and the principle of ‘un-crowding/unpacking the enunciation’.
Moreover, the EFP continues to occupy the functions of the ex-FEEP within the European Schools of the WAP. Among other things, it takes part in the debate within the ELP concerning the follow-up of the pass in that School. A decision will be taken on that question in the next few months. It also continues to hold a Seminar WAP-EFP within the Italian School, the SLP.
A European Community of Work
The EFP does not need to create the European community of psychoanalysis in the Lacanian orientation. This community of work already exists. However, it must be structured in order to acquire an efficient symbolic consistency. Two operations are necessary for that: on the one hand, it is about crossing the organizational borders of the working communities in one country, one School, one language, so as to open to the European dimension. On the other hand, it is about giving substance to the great number of adherents to the lacanian orientation of the WAP and the Freudian Field in Europe.
The creation of a European signifier for psychoanalysis supported by a great number of adherents will be a business card that can represent us and, as we hope, that can open the doors of the instances of the European Union in relation to the political questions concerning psychoanalysis. Additionally, this new signifier will have an effect on the life of our Schools and working groups. It should encourage a whirlwind of exchanges between the members of groups who will recognize themselves through their common belonging to the EuroFederation, whichever is the country or the language of the School to which they refer.
The Directories of the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis
The two Directories of the EuroFederation –the Directory of the Regions and the Adherents’ Directory- will contribute to this embodiment of our European community. Their edition is being coordinated by Guy Poblome, secretary of the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis.
The Directory of the Regions
A first draft of that Directory was circulated in PIPOL NEWS no 5, the 30th June 2010 as well as on the lists of the four Schools of the EFP (Communiqué no 1 of the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis). It comprises 55 regions listed in alphabetical order and 78 sub-regions, home of smaller active psychoanalytic communities within a region. This Directory reflects the implantation of psychoanalysis in the Lacanian orientation in Europe. Each region or sub-region has its ‘Regional Representative’. The names and the coordinates of those Regional Representatives are specified in the Directory. Thus the Directory of regions establishes a link between the local groupings of the EFP adherents representing the European community of psychoanalysis in the Lacanian orientation. It is being developed. A definitive version will be published and circulated.
The Adherents’ Directory
The Adherents’ Directory of the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis is in progress. It is a list of persons who are members of a School, an institution or a group of the Freudian Field in the regions of the EuroFederation. Registration in this Directory does not guarantee the training or practice of the adherent, as this is a matter for the Schools of the WAP, but testifies of the adherent’s belonging to the great working community which is interested and upholds the analytic cause of the Lacanian orientation, as it has been driven forward in Europe by the Schools of the WAP and the Freudian Field. In order to be listed in the Directory the adherent must be a member of a group or an institution officially recognised by the EuroFederation.
First European Congress of Psychoanalysis: PIPOL 5
On the 2nd and 3rd July 2011 under the title ‘Does Mental Health exist?’ the First European Congress of Psychoanalysis will take place in Brussels, capital of Europe (see Abstract in different languages in PIPOL NEWS no 12). This Congress will take place with simultaneous translations into five languages: English, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch. As well as being the founding Congress of the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis, this Congress inherits its name of the series of PIPOL ‘Rencontres’ which, organized until now by the Freudian Field, have given a defining place to psychoanalysis of the Lacanian orientation.
PIPOL 5 will have an epistemic and political importance: it will question the very concept of Mental Health, as well as the political intervention in this domain. Moreover, it will put forward the effects of the ‘Paris Event’ by inviting the adherents of the EuroFederation to testify of a point of ‘madness’, thus stretching the notion of the ‘good’ mental health.
The EuroFederation of Psychoanalysisensures the relay in the edition of Mental after the FEEP. It is a European Journal of great epistemic quality and politically engaged around questions of Mental Health since its creation in 1995. Mental will thus convey main concerns of the EuroFederation. Yves Vanderveken, who has just come to the end of his mandate as editor- in-chief of the Journal Quarto, has moved without taking any leave to his new function of editor- in-chief of Mental. The readers are invited to read his detailed plan published in PIPOL NEWS no 6.
A new website managed by Dominique Holvoet, special Delegate of the EFP for this project, has been created. This site is available in the four languages of the Schools of the EFP. It contains the founding texts, a presentation of the EFP, debates, a section Mental, news on the Congress PIPOL 5, and a “adherents” section for the Directories of the EFP etc.
The website’s address is: http:/www.europsychoanalysis.eu/
This electronic list of circulation was created in April 2010 in order to propel a debate with PIPOL 5 in view. With the transformation of the FEEP to EFP, PIPOL NEWS becomes the electronic Bulletin of the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis. The edition of the Bulletin is the responsibility of the President of the EFP, assisted by Pascale Simonet of the ACF-Belgium. It is circulated in the four languages of the EFP Schools. The archives of this Bulletin can be found on the website. The adherents of the EuroFederation who have not yet registered to PIPOL NEWS are invited to do so by sending an empty email to the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org
If a Lacanian School of psychoanalyis is a subject1, it certainly needs an Other… and a lack in the Other. It needs an Other in order for its signifiers to circulate, renew, dialecticise. The transformation of the European Federation of the Schools of Psychoanalysis (FEEP) into the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis (EFP) is the example of such a signifying movement the effects of which, we hope, are or will be real. But there also should be a lack of a signifier in that Other. It is there, in that S(A) barred, that the One School finds its foundations. A hole dug in the very centre of the School, a point of not knowing, which makes the Other a stranger to the point of becoming Unheimlich in all his splendour. This hole is a requirement for the School to hold a conversation around what causes it.
I propose that we take this angle to look at the thread of the movement launched by Jacques-Alain Miller from the foundation of the European School of Psychoanalysis (EEP) in 1990 through the creation of the ELP, SLP and NLS, ending up with the FEEP and its recent mutation into the EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis.
What do we want from that Federation? What does it want from us? The EuroFederation is in the process of being defined and built. Questions will undoubtedly arise. They will help us sharpen our politics. They need to be sent with your clarifications, comments and critiques to Gil Caroz email@example.com
President of the
EuroFederation of Psychoanalysis
(Translation: Hara Pepeli)
1 MILLER J.-A, ‘The Turin theory on the Subject of the School’ (2000), La Cause Freudienne, no 74, 2010