Report on the Study Days of the 18th and 19th May 2018, organised by the Hellenic Society in Crete, with Bruno de Halleux


In the framework of the activities of the Hellenic Society of the NLS in Crete, we had the pleasure of welcoming Bruno de Halleux, Psychoanalyst Member of the ECF, the NLS and the WAP.

On Friday the 18th of May in a hall of the Natural History Museum in Heraklion in front of 160 people, showing a lively interest in psychoanalysis, Bruno de Halleux gave a conference under the title “And If We Spoke of love?”

Bruno de Halleux offered us a speech on the question of love and the amorous encounter in psychoanalysis, in seven fragments, inspired by the book by Roland Barthes, A Lover’s Discourse: Fragments.

Starting from Lacan’s Seminar VIII on Transference, he referred to Plato’s Banquet and the mythical dialogue between an erastes, as subject of lack and an eromenos, the subject equipped with the algamatic object, to make a point about the definition of love: love is giving what one doesn’t have. We also spoke about the passage from contingence to necessity, which makes the destiny and the drama of love, and of the place of the Other in transference.

On Saturday 19th May, Bruno de Halleux moderated a theoretical seminar on “Language in the Clinic of the Psychoses; from the Signifier to the Signified”. Participants came from the annual seminar programme in Crete: psychiatrists, interns in psychiatry, doctors, psychologists, students of psychology and colleagues who travelled from Athens; in all 50 persons.

In the morning, Bruno de Halleux – oriented by Lacan’s last teaching and Jacques-Alain Miller’s course “Being and the One”, as well as by his own clinical work with autistic children – with finesse and clarity, took us through the concept of the signifier all alone, trying to introduce us to the new modality of the unconscious, which takes account of the relationship of the signifier with the body, grasping transference in a different way.

To approach the concept of the signifier, Bruno de Halleux took up again Seminar III, The Psychoses, where Lacan makes reference to the autonomy of the signifier, to the signifier as such that does not signify anything, to the a-semantic signifier, which means that it does not refer to any signification. Of this signifier that Lacan describes as a One all alone, or also There-is-something-of-the-One [Y’a d’l’Un], J-A Miller tells us that this signifier all alone serves us to find the knowledge contained in the real.

Lacan remarks on the theme of communication, that it is not about the signifier with its signification, but about taking note of the sign as such, of the message. This acknowledgment of receipt is essential in communication in so far as it is not signifying, but significant.

Following the paper by Éric Laurent at the WAP congress on the subject of The Ordinary Psychoses and the Others under Transference, Bruno de Halleux referred to transference and its new modality, which aims at “making true” the subject – in a reversal of the classical teaching of Lacan which aims at the “making be” of the subject. It is about a modality of transference that takes into account the stumbling, the bungled act [l’Une-bévue] of the subject confronted with Lalangue and its instabilities, its permanent sliding.

Making true the stumbling, is a position of the analyst in the transference that goes beyond the already existing position of the secretary or the witness, by being situated at the level of the pragmatic interpretation as a “jaculation” that brings to light the percussion of the signifier on the body, by producing an effect of real meaning.

The saying of the analyst that designates a use of the signifier with an effect of real meaning, resonates with the signifier all alone, with the first signifier, the one that is mysteriously articulated with the body in order to transform the subject into a speaking being.

J-A Miller teaches us in “Being and the One” that the speaking being has taken the place of the unconscious. Transference in its new usage has to include the act of pretending the true. Interpretation in the logic of the Y’a d’l’Un becomes “jaculation”.

In the afternoon, two clinical cases were presented, one each by Maria Papadaki (psychologist and member of the Hellenic Society) and Ionna Fioraki (psychologist and member of the Hellenic Society). These were commented on by Bruno de Halleux and gave occasion to a lively discussion.

Thanks to the clarity of his speech Bruno de Halleux allowed us to deepen our understanding of major theoretical points of analytic practice. He aroused in each of us a vibrant interest in continuing on our path, animated by a desire to know. For this we thank him warmly.

Maria Papadaki, delegate of the Hellenic Society in Crete

Translated by Natalie Wülfing