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New Left Review I/51, September-October 1968


Jacques Lacan

The Mirror-Phase as Formative of the Function of the I

The conception of the mirror-phase which I introduced at our last congress, 13 years ago, has since become more or less established in the practice of the French group; I think it nevertheless worthwhile to bring it again to your attention, especially today, for the light that it sheds on the formation of the I as we experience it in psychoanalysis. [1] Translators note—‘I’ is used here and throughout to translate Lacan’s ‘je’, in ‘le je’, ‘la fonction du je’, etc. ‘Ego’ translates ‘le moi’ and is used in the normal sense of psychoanalytic literature. On ‘je’, see note 2 below. It is an experience which leads us to oppose any philosophy directly issuing from the Cogito.

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