Book Section
Exploring Freud’s Rat Man case, this piece analyses the chain of signification that emerges in Freud’s articulation of the rat-related signifiers through which his patient’s neurosis is expressed. Two central concerns guide my reflection: (i) to question the divide between the individual and the social by showing how signifiers are one of the ways in which the symbolic inscribes itself onto the subject; (ii) to discuss how the case study as method proposes generalizations based on a singularity.
Keywords: Case study; Case method; Rat Man; Freud, Sigmund; Psychoanalysis; Signifier; Generalization; Obsessional neurosis
Title
The Case and the Signifier
Subtitle
Generalization in Freud’s Rat Man
Author(s)
Iracema Dulley
Identifier
Description
Exploring Freud’s Rat Man case, this piece analyses the chain of signification that emerges in Freud’s articulation of the rat-related signifiers through which his patient’s neurosis is expressed. Two central concerns guide my reflection: (i) to question the divide between the individual and the social by showing how signifiers are one of the ways in which the symbolic inscribes itself onto the subject; (ii) to discuss how the case study as method proposes generalizations based on a singularity.
Is Part Of
Place
Berlin
Publisher
ICI Berlin Press
Date
11 October 2022
Subject
Case study
Case method
Rat Man
Freud, Sigmund
Psychoanalysis
Signifier
Generalization
Obsessional neurosis
Rights
© by the author(s)
Except for images or otherwise noted, this publication is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Language
en-GB
page start
13
page end
37
Source
The Case for Reduction, ed. by Christoph F. E. Holzhey and Jakob Schillinger, Cultural Inquiry, 25 (Berlin: ICI Berlin Press, 2022), pp. 13–37

References

  • Abraham, Ruth, and K. H. Blacker, ‘The Rat Man Revisited: Comments on Maternal Influences’, International Journal of Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, 9 (1982–1983), pp. 705–27
  • Austin, John, How to Do Things with Words (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1962)
  • Beigler, Jerome, ‘A Commentary on Freud's Treatment of the Rat Man’, Annual of Psychoanalysis, 3 (1975), pp. 271–85
  • Berlant, Lauren, ‘On the Case’, Critical Inquiry, 33.4 (2007), pp. 663–72 <https://doi.org/10.1086/521564>
  • Derrida, Jacques, ‘Plato’s Pharmacy’, in Derrida, Dissemination, trans. by Barbara Johnson (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1981), pp. 61–171
  • Evans, Martha N., ‘Introduction to Jacques Lacan’s Lecture: The Neurotic’s Individual Myth’, The Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 48.3 (1979), pp. 386–404 <https://doi.org/10.1080/21674086.1979.11926883>
  • Forrester, John, Thinking in Cases (Cambridge: Polity, 2017)
  • Freud, Sigmund, ‘Notes upon a Case of Obsessional Neurosis (1909)’, in Freud, The Standard Edition, X (1955), pp. 153–318
  • Freud, Sigmund, ‘Bemerkungen über einen Fall von Zwangsneurose’, in Freud, Gesammelte Werke, 17 vols (Frankfurt a.M.: Fischer, 1940–52), VII: Werke aus den Jahren 1906–1909 (1941), pp. 380–463
  • Freud, Sigmund, The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, ed. and trans. by James Strachey and others, 24 vols (London: Hogarth Press, 1953–74)
  • Freud, Sigmund, ‘Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria (1905 [1901])’, in Freud, The Standard Edition, VII (1953), pp. 1–122
  • Freud, Sigmund, L’homme aux rats: journal d’une analyse (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1974)
  • Freud, Sigmund, and Carl Jung, Briefwechsel (Frankfurt a.M.: Fischer, 1984)
  • Gal, Susan, ‘Politics of Translation’, Annual Review of Anthropology, 44 (2015), pp. 225–40 <https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-anthro-102214-013806>
  • Grunberger, Béla, ‘Some Reflections on the Rat Man’, International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 47 (1966), pp. 160–68
  • Lacan, Jacques, Le séminaire de Jacques Lacan, ed. by Jacques-Alain Miller (Paris: Seuil, 1973–), XXIII: Le Sinthome (1975–1976) (2005)
  • Lacan, Jacques, ‘Ouverture à la section clinique’, Ornicar?, 9 (1977), pp. 7–14
  • Lacan, Jacques, ‘Le mythe individuel du névrosé’, Ornicar?, 17–18 (1979), pp. 289–307
  • Lacan, Jacques, The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis, ed. by Jacques-Alain Miller, trans. by Alan Sheridan (London: Routledge, 1998)
  • Lipton, Samuel, ‘The Advantages of Freud’s Technique as Shown in his Analysis of the Rat Man’, International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 58 (1977), pp. 255–73
  • Mahony, Patrick, Freud and the Rat Man (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1986)
  • Mannoni, Octave, ‘L’homme aux rats’, Les temps modernes, 20.228 (1965), pp. 2028–47
  • Melman, Charles, ‘The Rat Man’, in Obsessional Neurosis: Lacanian Perspectives, ed. by Astrid Gessert (London: Routledge, 2018), pp. 83–92 <https://doi.org/10.4324/9781003076254-6>
  • Passeron, Jean-Claude, and Jacques Revel, Penser par cas (Paris: Enquête, 2005) <https://doi.org/10.4000/books.editionsehess.19921>
  • Pratt, Mary, ‘Ideology and Speech Act Theory’, Poetics Today, 7.1 (1986), pp. 59–72 <https://doi.org/10.2307/1772088>
  • Rank, Otto, ‘Bericht über die I. private Psychoanalytische Vereinigung in Salzburg am 27. April 1908’, Zentralblatt für Psychoanalyse, 1.3 (1910), pp. 125–26
  • Safouan, Moustapha, ‘The Signification of Debt in Obsessional Neurosis’, pp. 77–82
  • Schneiderman, Stuart, Rat Man: Freud’s 1909 Case (New York: New York University Press, 1986)
  • Wells, Susan, ‘Freud's Rat Man and the Case Study: Genre in Three Keys’, New Literary History, 34.2 (2003), pp. 353–66 <https://doi.org/10.1353/nlh.2003.0024>
  • Wertz, Frederick, ‘Freud’s Case of the Rat Man Revisited: An Existential-Phenomenological and Socio-Historical Analysis’, Journal of Phenomenological Psychology, 34.1 (2003), pp. 47–78 <https://doi.org/10.1163/156916203322484824>

Cite as: Iracema Dulley, ‘The Case and the Signifier: Generalization in Freud’s Rat Man’, in The Case for Reduction, ed. by Christoph F. E. Holzhey and Jakob Schillinger, Cultural Inquiry, 25 (Berlin: ICI Berlin Press, 2022), pp. 13-37 <https://doi.org/10.37050/ci-25_02>