Marcus Coelen is a practicing psychoanalyst. After studying in France and the USA, he received a doctoral degree from the Viadrina-Universität, Frankfurt/Oder. He held positions in Romance Philology and Comparative Literature at the universities of Hamburg, Zürich and Munich (LMU) and has taught in Israel and Brasil.

Among his publications are a study on Proust and the problem of (aesthetic) judgment in the Recherche (Angemaßte Notwendigkeiten. Lektüren Proust, 2007), several translations and editions in German of texts by Maurice Blanchot (Politische Schriften 1958 – 1993, 2008; Das Neutrale. Texte und Fragmente zur Philosophie, 2010; Vergehen, 2012) and a constellation around the “primal scene” (Die andere Urszene. Texte von Maurice Blanchot, Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe et al., 2009).
He is a co-editor of the book series Neue Subjektile with Turia+Kant, Vienne and Berlin.

Writing Psychoanalysis
and Philology

ICI Affiliate Project 2014-16

My current work is a continuation of the 2013-14 ICI project. Whereas this work will consist in writing a number of texts on various topics falling into the intersections of psychoanalysis and philology, it is also an engagement with the perennial question of writing itself. My studies will be devoted to the specific uses of the terms interpretation, Deutung, and construction in the Freudian text and how they take shape in relation to the Nietzschean definition of philology of an “aphexis of interpretation”; to Helen’s destiny—seen in “all women” (Goethe, Faust)—from ancient sophism via Arno Schmitt and H.D. to a letter by Freud to Jung and the warding off a life being determined by contingency;

to Freud’s uses of poetic procedures for the writing of metapsychological concepts; to the folding of phantasm into his lectures; to a dog owned by Marie Bonaparte and a translation by the Freuds of a book written about it; and to the theoretical question of how to and how not to write a case in psychoanalysis. As different as they are, these “themes” are all, becoming projects of writing, caught by a drift which will have to be set once again into proximity with the drive. A notion of erring inscription might then be offered to both metapsychology and philology.

Other Wholeness and Something Wholly Other
(Psychoanalysis, Philology, Ontology)

ICI Project 2013-14

The project is a proposition to rethink the relationship between psychoanalysis and philology. It comprises two parts: a longer study on the (both esthetic and epistemic) notion of form and its history as seen from its verge if traced by the writing of psychoanalytic and literary aporias; and an analysis of parts of a metonymic chain that links terms with the whole in the Lacanian text (tout, un, pas-tout, imaginaire etc.), meshing them into his late re-encounter with the Freudian Stoff in the form of a tissue that once again and differently reshapes the real of its matter with the imaging of it as something that is subjected to identification.

The other wholeness of this fabric can be projected into a late ontological dimension, and there it has to be thought in proximities with open sets and other instances of wholes that aren’t such, whose names, however, survive the event of their disaster – names like “name”, “form”, or, for that matter, “psychoanalysis” and “philology”. For they both gesticulate with parts of a body the consistency of which is not certain, a body wrapped in and shot through by what is traditionally called language or the symbolic in ways that most likely have to be sketched out again today. Philology and psychoanalysis as names for the vanishing traces of ways of turning towards that in language and experience which is wholly other than what can be, in whatever form, identified or determined in it, and yet draws something into thought.