Is there a future for the project of a clinical anthropology (‘patho-analysis of existence’)

Is it still possible and meaningful, as traditional psychoanalytic theory implies, to understand the relation between psychopathology and (philosophical) anthropology in a positive and structural way? This would imply that psychoanalysis is characterised by a primacy of the pathological, rather than a primacy of sexuality: studying psychopathology is crucial in order to understand what it means to be human (‘clinical anthropology’)? More concretely, psychopathology shows in a magnified way the fundamental structures of human existence as such. How does this psychoanalytic project relate to more recent developments in philosophy, evolutionary psychiatry, neuropsychoanalysis and anthropology? And what is its critical potential with regard to the problematic role of psychology and psychiatry in contemporary society.

Project leader(s):
  • Philippe Van Haute (Radboud)
STIAS fellow(s):
  • Ariane Bazan (Brussels)
  • Vladimir Safatle (São Paulo)
  • Herman Westerink (Vienna)
  • Desmond Painter (Visiting Scholar, Stellenbosch)

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