Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Can we treat Psychoanalysis as a Science? and Red 259

On Monday we had a further session around Philosophy and Psychoanalysis - and the theme that was under the microscope was (I believe) Can Psychoanalysis be treated as a science?

Following on from Garfinkel's experiment  (that could be considered an attack on some potential Charlatans) we looked at how  much the subject of analysis brings to the party.
Pigeons -what do they know?

 What I liked was that we were at least asking the question in my mind those who practice Psychoanalysis do treat it as a science but many of those who are in what we could label traditional science  are far more sceptical.

it was good to hear of some associated literature and figures yesterday- these included Chalmers (AJ) and his book What is this thing called science  along with Peter Winch's 1958  work The Idea of a Social Science and its Relation to Philosophy.

Mention was also made of Karl Popper (he popularised the idea about Black Swans)  - one of Popper's quotable statements was that In so far as a scientific statement speaks about reality, it must be falsifiable; and in so far as it is not falsifiable, it does not speak about reality - which seemed to hit the nail on the head for yesterday's discussion.

With limits on what has to now been used to build up the cannon of the subject there is a rich thread of individualism to many practices and there has been at times something close to idolatry around Freud (we're due to look at Jung who offers a somewhat different approach soon) - Freud's goal to make the unconscious conscious can sound dangerously simplistic and my personal view would be that the last 100 years of discovery may mean that some of the skills practiced might now look a little like Shamanism - but I'm sure I've much to be introduced too in the remaining weeks.

[I have some separate issues about the human need to provide categorisation and narration where sometimes that which is on offer is something of a poor fit and the fit is only made in hindsight .]

Red 259

Another woman in predominantly red

A visitor to the Whitechapel Gallery

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