Daragh Howard – Saint Paul and Freud: The Denial of the Sovereign Good in Lacan’s Seminar VII

Issue 42 (Autumn 2009) Pages- 109-126

In Seminar VII, Lacan makes the claim that Saint Paul and Freud tell us the same thing about the Sovereign Good in that what they each articulate about the law and pleasure constitutes a denial of the notion posited in traditional ethics that a relationship of complementarity exists between pleasure and this Sovereign Good. The author demonstrates that that this denial corresponds with Lacan’s own thesis in the seminar, which involves the idea that the moral law affirms itself in opposition to pleasure, and Lacan’s critique of such a relationship is presented in terms of the moral tradition failing to recognise the nature of the object upon which pleasure truly depends….

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