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Citizen SubjectFoundations for Philosophical Anthropology$
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Étienne Balibar

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780823273607

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823273607.001.0001

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The Invention of the Superego: Freud and Kelsen, 1922

The Invention of the Superego: Freud and Kelsen, 1922

(p.227) Twelve: The Invention of the Superego: Freud and Kelsen, 1922
Citizen Subject

Étienne Balibar

, Steven Miller
Fordham University Press

This chapter synthesizes a number of hypotheses centered around the invention of the superego (Über-Ich) and simultaneously upon the relation between psychoanalytic discourse and the problem of the political: not as a relation of application, a philosophical analogy, or simply of their mutual dependence on a common anthropology or theory of “culture,” but rather as a veritable reciprocity of perspectives, manifest in a recurring question that both fields recognize as their own. This reciprocity, the chapter argues, is manifestly evidenced in Freud's very introduction of the concept of the “superego,” which thus becomes the representative of the political at the heart of the theory of the unconscious just as it is or could be the representative of the unconscious psyche at the heart of political theory.

Keywords:   superego, Über-Ich, Sigmund Freud, Hans Kelsen, psychoanalytic discourse, political theory, reciprocity of perspectives, theory of the unconscious, unconscious psyche

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