Unconscious and Consciousness: Two Words in Search of an Author.

Franco Lancia


‘Unconscious’ and ‘Consciousness’ (or ‘Conscious’) are key words present in the vocabulary of many social sciences, both used for describing empirical findings and theoretical models; however it sometimes happens that one or the other is assumed to correspond to a ‘reality’ to be systematically investigated and – in most cases - the model of such a reality leads the researchers to hypostatize the reality of their model. Such a phenomenon, which becomes ‘visible’ through the comparison of opposite theories and their respective programs of research—namely those sustaining that (a) Mind = Unconscious or that (b) Mind = Consciousness—is particularly interesting because it reveals basic problems concerning the epistemology of human sciences and their ‘archaeological level’ (Foucault, 1966). So, by studying such a cultural phenomenon, we can better understand that neither of the two words in question corresponds to a distinct ‘reality’, rather both are used in language games (Wittgenstein, 1953) through which social sciences build their borders, as well as their professional practices and the ‘objects’ they are dealing with.

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Rivista di Psicologia Clinica. Teoria e metodi dell'intervento

Rivista Telematica a Carattere Scientifico Registrazione presso il Tribunale civile di Roma (n.149/2006 del 17/03/2006)

ISSN 1828-9363