Philadelphia Lacan Study Group

Thursday, November 16, 2017 (7:00 pm to 8:30 pm)

New Reading Seminar: THE ART OF THE SYMPTOM

“ I am hereby announcing what this year shall be my examination of art. In what way is artifice expressly able to target what presents itself in first instance as a symptom? In what way can art—the artisanal—foil, as it were, what imposes as a symptom? Namely, truth.” Jacques Lacan, Seminar Le Sinthome, Book XXIII Session I, 18 November 1975

When Lacan came up with his coining of the sinthome, he proposed a new kind of symptom that was non-pathological and had a function analogous to that of art. Lacan discovered it in the writings of Joyce. Joyce’s art was meant to compensate for a defect in his subjective structure, which saved him from madness. The sinthome as art repairs faults in the psyche and works as a supplement. The sinthome is art taken in an extended sense because it organizes a know-how, a singular knowledge that cannot be transferred to another person but holds individual subjects and prevents them from falling apart.

In this reading group we engage in a close reading and discussion of Lacan’s Seminar Le Sinthome Book XXIII.
(Jacques Lacan, The Sinthome, Book XXII, Ed. J. A. Miller, trans. A. R. Price. Cambridge and Malden MA: Polity, 2016.)
The reading seminars are an open forum for the discussion of psychoanalysis. Curated by Patricia Gherovici. Seminars are free and open to all. Questions? Email:

Where? Kelly Writers House, ROOM # 203 Second Floor
38th and Locust Streets, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.