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Freudian metapsychology and the concept of mimesis in the dialect of enlightenment: on drive theory and ego formation

Grant number: 21/11113-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): April 04, 2022
Effective date (End): April 03, 2023
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Philosophy - History of Philosophy
Principal Investigator:Luiz Sérgio Repa
Grantee:Simone Bernardete Fernandes
Supervisor: Isabelle Aubert
Host Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, France  
Associated to the scholarship:20/01051-1 - Death drive and emancipation: on the reception of a psychoanalytic concept in critical theory, BP.DR


Motivated by the centrality of the Dialectic of Enlightenment in contemporary debates about critical theory and psychoanalysis, and by the polemics surrounding it, this research will investigate how the concept of mimesis relates to Freud's metapsychology in this book. Our thesis is that the elucidation of the role of the concept of mimesis in Horkheimer and Adorno's understanding of drive theory and in their description of ego formation is crucial not only because it offers new perspectives on their reception of psychoanalysis, but also for the discussion of contemporary subjective obstacles to social emancipation. In light of Jessica Benjamin's critique of the so-called "end of internalization thesis" and of more recent literature that responds to her positions, we intend to display the consequences of the lack of consideration of the entanglement between mimesis and psychoanalytical concepts in assessments of this book and to discuss the potential of new approaches that encompass it. (AU)

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