The Instance of the Letter in the Unconscious, or Reason Since Freud  

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The Instance of the Letter in the Unconscious, or Reason Since Freud is an essay by the psychoanalytic theorist Jacques Lacan, originally delivered as a talk on May 9, 1957 and later published in Lacan's 1966 book Écrits.

Lacan begins the essay by declaring it to be "situated halfway" between speech and writing. By doing so, he foreshadows both the essay's notorious opacity and its theme: the relationship between speech and language and the place of the subject in relation to both.

"Wo Es war, soll Ich werden"

With the fleetingness of the subject established, Lacan closes the essay by developing a maxim of Sigmund Freud's: "Wo Es war, soll Ich werden" (usually translated as: "where the id was, the ego shall be"). Rather than strengthening the ego as the great intellectual and ideological rival of Lacanian psychoanalysis, ego psychology, encouraged the patient to do, Lacan claims that the analysand 'must come to the place where that was...modifying the moorings that anchor his being'.

This means breaking out of the metonymy of desire by crossing the bar.

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