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Category: Religion and Philosophy

meme over-analysis pt.1 Freud

When it comes to Freud in the popular imagination, the thinker is most often associated with “so, you want to bang your mom/dad”. Of course things in pop culture will be dumbed down. 

And so we have for example, this meme I will respond to. It is clever but illustrates in part that pop phenomenon. 

The meme went:

Sigmund Freud: All men secretly

REALLY REALLY want to have sex with their mothers

It's the Oedipus Complex

Oedipus: (Who literally gouged his own eyes out and killed himself when he found out he accidentally had sex with his mother) I'm sorry it's the WHAT complex

😂😅 It is a funny one but I will over-analyze this in all seriousness for more clarity on Oedipus. 

First off the Oedipus Complex is not just about that. It’s also about getting what you “want” in a more general sense being a disaster / not being what you thought it was. At least for Lacanians who come after Freud. And that actually fits Oedipus’s response of terror. 

it makes sense to be an Oedipus Complex because of people’s wanting to fill a lack in themselves in order to feel complete or achieve oceanic oneness. The “oceanic oneness” is associated with infancy. Or with the infants closeness to the mother before the infant has differentiated a “self”. 

Oedipus gets what they want and “returns” to this closeness more literally only to find it is not what they thought it was. And that is how it is with lack and desire more figuratively. It’s part of why we have a “death drive” that often prevents us from our target desire through self sabotage. It’s also why we are never fully satisfied by things like fancy cars and money but our desire always shifts or continues.

Anyways, just saying it’s more complicated than “wants to bang mum”

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