Citizenship and the Rise of the Psychotic
The advent of globalisation, individualism and the spread of consumerist capitalism have led to a decline in the sovereignty of the nation-state and restructured the relationship between private and public. These developments have renewed academic interest in, and questioning of, the concept of citizenship. In a particularly influential paper, Isin, basing his analysis in Freud, argues that what we are witnessing in the contemporary democratic West is the rise of the neurotic citizen. The purpose of this article is to respond to and expand upon Isin's arguments, utilising insights from Lacan. In particular, the article explores the relationship between the neurotic and the psychotic. It argues that if Lacan's thesis of the so-called ?decline of the paternal function' is correct, governments increasingly may respond not only to neurotic citizens, but also those who are psychotic. The consequences of this may be more ominous than Isin envisages.
Griffith Law Review
Commercial and Contract Law