20190926_040837519.pdf - was a fixed connection between these physical pathologies limited to the female sexual organs and particular symptoms Due to

20190926_040837519.pdf - was a fixed connection between...

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was a fixed connection between these physical pathologies limited to the female sexual organs and particular symptoms. Due to this connection, hysteria has generally been considered as a pathology to which women are fully subject. If it is established in an anatomical or physiological source that is the womb (called hystera in Greek), the disease itself would only take place in the female body. - 126 - and innervations which we come across as symptoms of hysteria in organs that have no apparent connection with sexuality are in this way revealed to us as being in the nature of fulfillments of perverse sexual impulses in relation to which other organs have acquired the significance of the sexual parts. (Freud, 1991 [1973]: 349- 50) For Freud, hysteria is the manifestation on the patient’s body of her desire to flee from the patriarchal order. Hysteria, for Freud, makes the unintelligible voice audible and embodied. In theorising hysteria, Freud demonstrates a figurative nature to the hysteric voice. In “Silences from the Deep: Mapping Being and Nonbeing in The Piano and in a Schizoid Young Woman”, the feminist psychiatrist, Jane Van Buren (2000: 139-161), points to the similar conditions between one of her clients and Ada. She argues that both schizoid withdrawal and wilful muteness can be considered as an outcome of the social, cultural and interpersonal fear of women’s desire. Van Buren (2000) suggests that the female voice is intensely influenced by a network of representations hidden in the unconscious, that try to veil, sidestep, and mend the hole (vagina) in the body. As psychiatrists, both Freud and Van Buren find a voice for those women who are not able to articulate in speech. Like Freud, Irigaray considers hysteria to be a nonverbal expression or a mode of bodily communication that reveals a veiled message. Irigaray states: - 127 - Hysteria: it speaks in the mode of a paralyzed gestural faculty, of impossible and also a forbidden speech … It speaks as symptoms of an ‘it cannot speak to or about itself’ … And the drama of hysteria is that it is inserted schizotically between that gestural system, that desire paralyzed and enclosed within its body, and a language that it has learned in the family, in school, in society, which is in no way continuous with – nor, certainly, a metaphor for – the “movement” of its desire . (Irigaray, 1985b: 136-7) Irigaray sees hysteria as a mode of resistance to patriarchal law and positions it outside of the symbolic order.
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