As Guillermo Bigliani has done, now it is my turn to elaborate on psychoanalysis and, in doing so, I will intend to provide a counterpoint to Carlos Sluzki's systemic approach. While never attempting to conceal differences, in this book we wish to build bridges between agreements and disagreements, composing a canon where all voices are clearly heard.
It is also my purpose to shed light on some “aporias” at the point where psychoanalysis and the systemic approach intersect, and also between hypotheses that seek the origin of meanings in the intrapsychic and those which find it in interaction. I use the Greek word aporia because various theories have caused the elaboration of some unfortunate declarations that make mutual enrichment of the models impossible. This difference generates two contradictory paradigms: psychoanalytic and systemic.
I believe that psychoanalysis cannot afford to ignore the intelligent and sharp contributions of one of the most interesting thinkers of the twentieth century, Gregory Bateson, one of the creators of systemic developments, and of some of his brilliant followers, Sluzki included. Neither do I believe that a concept that allows us to understand what is human should leave out the contributions of psychoanalysis to the “psychic reality” of each subject. This would be viewing it as a “black box” about which we know nothing.
One of the last projects proposed by Freud was that of an I enquiry into the processes of premise, postulate, and proof. He was particularly concerned with the way in which such procedures of science relate to the protocol that determines the analytical relation. In the various sections of Freud’s Moses and Monotheism—written in the 4 years leading up to 1938— he tried to produce an account of the psychic prerequisites for the advance of science,1 making a series of hypotheses about what it is in human life that is strong enough to have an overwhelming effect on the power of logic. Since none of the hypotheses that Freud produced in this work lie at all close to the recommendations of common sense, they call into question the nature of and the results of psychoanalytical method. The project that Freud was engaged in was accordingly the sketching of an outline of the structures involved in psychoanalytical technique, and an investigation of the relation of these structures to science.
It is to law alone that men owe justice and liberty. It is this salutary organ of the will of all which establishes, in civil right, the natural equality between men.
This book provides a model you can use to resolve conflict and avoid the high cost of professionals. Unfortunately, everyone does not aspire to the resolutionary standards advocated here. Fortunately, we have a system in place for people unwilling to engage in a peaceful process of resolution: the civil court system. The system has the teeth to make sure people honor its decisions. It enforces by coercive power. Our legal system provides a foundation, leverage, and a place of last resort. The legal system tells people what their new agreement is.
Because it protects against exploitation, the civil court system and its powers of enforcement hold the heart of liberty. As discussed in earlier chapters, the system is far from perfect and is subject to abuses in its application, but it surely does protect human rights. The subject of this chapter is how our legal system complements the model for conflict resolution.