Lieven Jonckheere Seminar

Seminars

Saturday 12 April 2014 – 10:00 to 12:30
St. Teresa’s, Clarendon Street, Dublin 2 (entrance opposite Brown Thomas car park)

Price: €20 (full member); €25 (non-member); €10 (student w/id)

 

‘Autism – The Case of Donna Williams, Part II’

Abstract: In the first talk on Donna Williams, last year in Dublin, I indicated that, based upon her autobiographical testimonies, we can distinguish between three phases in her own treatment of her autism, three phases which are based upon three radically different conceptions of autism:

1. Her first treatment of autism is based upon a classical post-Freudian psychoanalytical conception of autism. At that point the myth of the Oedipus complex leads to the accusation of the so-called refrigerator mother
and the promotion of a good enough mother

2. Her second treatment of autism is based upon an academic psychological conception of autism. At that point the ideology of the bio-psycho-social unity of man leads to the promotion of psycho-education and group formation.

3. Her third treatment of autism is based upon a contemporary Lacanian psychoanalytic conception of autism. At this point the finding that nobody can do without a symptom compel the subject to invent inconceivably private i.e. sinthomatic arrangements that make it possible to do with autism. To me this seems to be DW’s final treatment of her autism – and that’s what I would like to develop in this second clinical seminar on Donna Williams.

The basis for this third phase or treatment of autism is a radical change in the status of the word autism as a signifier. ‘Autism’ does not any longer guarantee any form of unity, be it Donna’s own identity (being equal to herself) or the social bond with the other (being equal with other autists). As ‘true autism’ it has become a means for knocking together Donna’s own inconceivably private form of autism – which is an autism that is constantly in progress, that is not equal to itself, and that cannot be compared any longer to the equally inconceivably private forms of autism invented by other autists.

I will show how Donna knocks together her own inconceivably private form of autism by claiming a unique place in four different realms – as a kind of prima donna of autism in each of these four realms. By claiming this status in these four realms she also kind of knots them together.

1.  “I am the first author ever who, as a real autist,…published about her own autism”
Donna invents a new literary genre, creating a subjective position for the autist: the so-called autibiography

2. “I am the first consultant ever who, as a real autist, … implemented new therapeutic techniques for the treatment of autism”
Donna invents a new treatment of the object, as an indifferent object, which makes it acceptable to autists

3. “I am the first teacher ever who, as a real autist, … constructed a theory about autism, that is taught at universities”
Donna invents the fruit salad model of autisme, based on a new concept of anxiety, exposure anxiety, which approaches autists one by one

4. “I am the first artist ever who, as a real autist, … achieved such and such a thing in plastic arts and in music.”
I call this a sinthomatic solution for autism – the sinthome being the idea of being the first lady, the prima donnaof autism, as exemplified in the sentence “I am the first real autist who …”

Lieven Jonckheere holds a doctorate in clinical psychology (dissertation on Lacan’s theory of anxiety), and is a lecturer in psychology at the Dutch speaking University of Ghent in Belgium. He is a psychoanalyst in private practice in Gent, a member of the ‘Kring voor Psychoanalyse van de New Lacanian School’, ‘New Lacanian School’ and ‘World Association for Psychoanalysis’. He is responsible for the ‘Theoretical Seminar of the Kring of the NLS on Lacan’s teaching’ (together with Anne Lysy), a collaborator on ‘Continuous Formation in Psychoanalytical Therapy’ at the Departmen of Psychology University Gent (director Paul Verhaeghe) and a frequent contributor to iNWiT (Dutch speaking Journal of the New Lacanian School).

Contact: [email protected]

Seminar Reading Bibliography:

Williams, D. (1992). Nobody nowhere. The remarkable autobiography of an autistic girl. London & Philadelphia: Kingsley.

Williams, D. (1994). Somebody somewhere. Breaking free from the world of autism. London & Philadelphia: Kingsley.

Williams, D. (1999). Like colour to the blind. Soul searching and soul finding. London & Philadelphia: Kingsley.

Williams, D. (2004). Every day heaven. Journeys beyond the stereotypes of autism. London & Philadelphia: Kingsley.

Williams, D. blog http://blog.donnawilliams.net

Williams, D. website http://www.donnawilliams.net/

Laurent E. (1981). De quelques problemès de surface dans la psychose et l’autisme. In: Quarto 2, pp. 30-46

Laurent, E. (2007). Autisme et psychose: poursuite d’un dialogue avec Robert et Rosine Lefort. In: la Cause freudienne 66, pp. 105-118

Laurent, E. (2010). Une psychanalyse orientée vers le reel. In: Miller, J.-A., L’avenir de l’autisme. Avec Robert et Rosine Lefort. Paris: Navarin

Laurent, E. (2011). Les spectres de l’autisme. In: la Cause freudienne 78, pp. 53-63

Laurent, E. (2012). Les sujets autistes, leurs corps et leurs objets. In: À l’écoute des autistes. Des concepts et des cas. Vol I (conversation cllinique avec Jacques-Alain Miller). Organisation UFORCA.

Laurent, E. (2012). La bataille de l’autisme. De la clinique à la politique. Paris: Navarin.

Laurent E. (2013). Questions sur les autisms (Séminaire de formation animé par Eric Laurent). In: Mental 30, pp. 175-206

Laurent, E. (unpublished [2013]). Les autisme aujourd’hui (lecture in Brussels, 23 February 2013)

Maleval, J.-C. (2003). De la psychose précocissime au spectre de l’autisme. Ornicar? Digital 240

Maleval, J.-C. (2007). ‘Plutôt verbeux’ les autistes. In: La Cause freudienne, 66, 127-140.

Maleval, J.-C. (2007). Quel traitement pour le sujet autiste? Ornicar? digital 303

Maleval, J.-C. (2009). L’autiste et sa voix. Paris: Seuil

Maleval, J.-C. (2009). L’autiste, son double et ses objets. Rennes: Presses Universitaires

Maleval, J.-C. (not published [2010]). Qui sont les autistes?

Maleval, J.-C. (2011). Langue verbeuse, langue factuelle et phrases spontanées chez l’autiste. In: la Cause freudienne 78, pp. 77-92

Maleval, J.-C. (2012). Pourquoi l’hypothèse d’une structure autistique? In: À l’écoute des autistes. Des concepts et des cas. Vol I (conversation cllinique avec Jacques-Alain Miller). Organisation UFORCA.

Maleval, J.-C. (2012). Ecoutez les autistes! Paris: Navarin (pamphlet)

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