ADVANTAGES

Psychoanalysis presents a critical and diagnostic project, notnecessarily a normative or liberatory one. In developing a theoryof the drives and the non-rational forces that move and impel us, theidea that we are opaque rather than transparent to ourselves, incapableof complete self-knowledge or self-mastery, psychoanalytic theory alsochallenges the rationalist, humanist ego and proposes that our ethicalcharacters and political communities are not perfectable, exposing theprecariousness of both psychic and political identity. Theunconscious cannot be assumed to be inherently either a transgressiveor a conservative force, but an unreliable one, promoting revolt orrebellion sometimes, intransigence and rigid border preservation at othertimes.

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