European psychoanalytic group for research and training on  the causes of illiteracy


Illiteracy, literacy, topology and psychoanalysis :


Thinking Wrongly about Freud (What every schoolchild should know. . .)  [5/2000] - PLACE (Psychoanalysis Los Angeles California Extension)










What every schoolchild should know. . .  [5/2000]

By Ika B. Roub     

The reception of psychoanalysis in the grand public is a baffling episode in the intellectual history of the twentieth century, an episode which is not finished and will have no doubt to be followed closely in the twenty-first.  As such, the Los Angeles Times and the Skirball Cultural Center, are to be applauded for presenting a series of articles on Freud and psychoanalysis (3/30-31/2000), and a family art workshop on "Freud: Inkblots and Dreams" (at the Skirball Cultural Center).

What is remarkable about the LA Times presentation is that it has had, not only the courage to enter into this century, but has enclosed these articles in the entertainment section for children. For it seems today that Freud and psychoanalysis can be packaged as entertainment and made consumable even to the child.  So much so, that it is no longer a question of the psychoanalytic observation of the child (as it was founded in the work of Freud's daughter, Anna Freud, and the celebrated work of Melanie Klein), but the child's observations of psychoanalysis.  A truly extraordinary inversion!

The question is however, not whether the Freudian invention of psychoanalysis is a cultural consumption beneficial to the child, for it can always be posed as such, but rather we must ask if these articles and exhibitions actually succeed in presenting the child a true idea of psychoanalysis.  And if not, then what are we subjecting the child to in the name of cultural merchandising and entertainment? Conversely, what are we subjecting psychoanalysis to in such a "childish" presentation?

No doubt, imagining the reader/spectator of the articles and exhibitions to be a child guided by the family, is an effective way to force the author(s) to write simply.  In careless hands however, this type of writing results in a misunderstanding which confuses simplicity with not only facility, but banality.  In the best of cases, the reader is confronted with nothing other than false and superficial information (a vulgarization), and in the worst of cases one is left with the charm and suggestions of the writer seeking to make the reader consent by whatever means (hypnosis).

Whatever the case may be, such introductions inspire a false or comic Woody-Allenesque notion of psychoanalysis by overrating its apparent frivolity in relation to dreams and cultural activities, while underestimating its relation to reality and simplicity itself.  For indeed, psychoanalysis, once put into relation to that which is simple — and not banal — finds its natural ally not simply in the birth of the child, but the birth of science.

Even as an adult who truly admires the intuitions of infants and realizes that their categories often go beyond those of their parents, I am still embarrassed to admit that I often read the children's section of the newspaper just to test those qualities which are supposed to characterize my maturity.  Yet, as I have become over the last few years attuned to the finer points of the children's sections of various newspapers and magazines, I feel my judgment on such matters might be of use in stabilizing the field, especially as it concerns the relationship of the "child-ish" to psychoanalysis.

In opening up the discussion with the in-fant (literally, in Latin, meaning the one without speech), I will merely begin by outlining what every schoolchild should know about psychoanalysis and mathematical sequences.

continued :

PLACE (Psychoanalysis Los Angeles California Extension)



Web Changes : This is where we'll announce the most recent additions to our web site. If you've visited us before and want to know what's changed, take a look here first :


Govern, Educate, Psychoanalyze ?

Joyce the Symptom : Conference given by J. Lacan in the large auditorium of the Sorbonne on the 16th of June, 1975

Illiteracy and Sexuation - (French Essai on illiteracy), by Charley Supper (Download)

The Lost Topology of Psychoanalysis (La Topologie Perdue de la Psychanalyse) , by Robert Groome

What is "a cartel" in psychoanalysis ?

Recurso a las propuestas de Gottlob Frege,  by Luisa Matallana (Spanish text)

Corrected drawings of the text of Lacan : "Le Sinthome", by Gérard Crovisier

The topological Denouement of the cure, by Robert Groome

The Borromean Knot  -  Definition

Invention of the concept of "Real" by Lacan, from Charley Supper

Frege's Predicate Calculus and Theory of Concepts (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)


Lacan's version of the Signifer

The Signifer "Europe"

The lying of illiteracy

Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus by Ludwig Wittgenstein

Illiteracy and Topology - Adam and Eve, by Charley Supper

Topology-Knots and Unknots

Illiteracy - Stop with warlike terminology !

Illiteracy and Globalisation by Charley Supper

Free Internet publications on education (Canadian)

El poder de la palabra vacía (The Power of the Empty Word) Hugo Calello y Susana Neuhaus - An analysis of the populist political discourse, supported by the disguisable plan regarding the ideology as language and by Adorno's idea of "empty word".  Text (in spanish only)

Knot theory

Iconicity and Metaphor in Sign Languages : Recent Studies by Sarah Lind

What is Psychoanalysis ?

Illiteracy and Sexuation

What is Topology ?

Pas Tout Lacan : All the writtings of Lacan (in French) to download on "L'école lacanienne de Psychanalyse"

Topology-Adam and Eve, by Charley Supper  

Illiteracy and topology definitions

Another approach towards illiteracy

What is Psychoanalysis ?

Illiteracy and Globalisation

Illiteracy and Topology : The knot theory

Iconicity and Metaphor in Sign Languages : Recent Studies by Sarah Lind

What is illiteracy for us ?

One often confuses analphabetism, illiteracy, school delay, mental backwardness, dyslexia, dumbness and autism, ...


Concerning the "B4", they are people who made studies (secondary or more) in their country but did not acquire the language from here ; they cannot thus write, nor speak or read French.

School delay is generally caused by a traumatism of the child who did not solve yet his problems involved in the Oedipus or who is held by the meshes of a family pathology.

Mental backwardness, we will say to go quickly that it is the result as well of a genetic heritage (like "trisomy 21" or alcoholism), than of a trauma not solved concerning the Oedipus. It is also the hold-all where all the handicaps are indexed which medicine does not manage to look after (dyslexia, dumbness, anorexia, bulimia, autism, etc...).

Illiteracy, we tried to approach it's symptoms and we affirm that it comes from a non inscription, a non recording of the sexuation symbolic system.

These various situations also involve a whole range of administrative pathologies.


Illiteracy and Topology-Adam and Eve : Topology don't care about quantity but only works on quality. This reason makes it easy to work on unconsciousness and language which work the same way.
If you consider Illiteracy through Topology, the results are perfectly coherent and performing. Using only Quality references, makes you discover at once what is the problem : Sexuation !

What is Topology ? : Topology is a part of mathematics. Their is two separate, distinct sections (one on general, point set topology, the other on algebraic topology). Independent topics and applications exist too, like in psychoanalysis and in linguistics...

What is Psychoanalysis ? : Psychoanalysis is the name of a procedure for the investigation of mental processes which are almost inaccessible in any other way and can be the object of serious investigation. Psychoanalysis is concerned not only with the singular experience of an individual analysis, but is equally preoccupied with and applied to the entirety of human phenomena in which the unconscious is involved...

Some of our other pages about illiteracy :

Other web sites on Topology or mathematics

Other interesting web site on psychoanalysis  (

PLACE - Psychoanalysis Los Angeles California Extension

What is Lacanian psychoanalysis ?

How does Lacanian analysis address the question of mysticism ?

Is topology used as a model in psychoanalysis ?

What is a psychoanalytic position on  current DNA research and homosexuality ?


Learning French online - The Guide of every days words and current English and French expressions













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