The Psychoanalysis of Fire has ratings and 27 reviews. Modern Hermeneut said: With this book, Bachelard cements his reputation as an intellectual cha. Psychoanalysis of Fire never adopt a truly objective attitude. When we are dealing with men, our equals and our brothers, our method should be based on. PSYCHOANALYSIS OF FIRE, THE The Psychoanalysis of Fire was published by Gaston Bachelard in , before Water and Dreams: An Essay on the.

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From inside the book. Looking for beautiful books? Toulet But although this book is easy to write when we go about it line upon line, it seems to be quite impossible to give it a well-organized structure. A traveller tells us about primitive men shaping objects on the polishing wheel in a work which might last for two months. It does stir our emotions nonetheless. We would now like to demonstrate that this sexual reverie is a fireside reverie.

It affords us an example of those forms mixed with desires which can produce poems as well as philosophies. Philosophy, literature Volume of Beacon paperbacks. I should call it a myth, because to me a myth is a structural principle in literature.

The Psychoanalysis of Fire by Gaston Bachelard

Here I showed how geometry and algebra grad- ually contributed their abstract forms and principles so that experimentation might be canalized into a scientific path. The generally accepted method of throwing light upon the psychology of prehistoric man is to study still existing primitive peoples. If the electric fire could insinuate itself into the cells of the little balls of fire which fill the tissue of bodies which are in themselves electric; if it could untie this multitude of little pouches which have the power to contain this hidden, secret and internal fire and if it could unite itself to it; then these particles of fire, now set free, shaken, com- pressed, dispersed, reunited and violently agitated, would com- municate to the electric fire an action, a force, a speed, an accelera- tion, a fury which would disunite, break, sec ablaze and destroy the compound.

To the unknown aspecc it is not so much ignorance which corresponds as error, and error that is most heavily over- laden with subjective defects. He will write down the oxidation formula. To know facts and to make things are needs that we can characterize in them- selves without necessarily having to relate them to the will to power. For a primitive mind this difference is of a sexual order. These little spheres are an electrical sub- stance, inert and lifeless; like an unlit candle or an egg ready to receive the spark of life, or the pip of an apple or a seed: Indeed, I do not think I lit a fire myself before I was eighteen years old.


Fire is but a love whose secret is to be detected. It can contra- dict itself; thus it is one of the principles of universal explanation. Since we are limiting ourselves to psychoanalyzing a psy- chic layer that is less deep, more intellectualized, we muse replace che study of dreams by the study of reverie, and, more particu- larly, in this little book we muse study the reverie before the fire.

One can see, moreover, how easily the unquestioned value of fire can be established. And so the ancient ideas continue down through the ages; they keep recurring, even in more or less learned reveries, with all their charge of original naivete.

The natural experience comes only in second place co furnish a material proof which is unexpected arid hence too obscure to establish an item of objective knowledge.

Perhaps this can be seen IO Fire and Respect better if we compare the pin-prick and die burn- They borh cause reflexes. But fire has not yet found its own science as has electricity. It is a phenomenon both monotonous and br illian t, a really total phenomenon: But in our opinion this problem is really not one of scientific history, fier the scientific part of the problem is falsified by the importation of the values whose action we have demonstrated in the preceding chapters.

If it had been solely a question of recording stupid observations, it would have been only too easy to have written a large volume. It burns in Hell. One whole type of reverie brings us psychoanalysiis to a meditation on the concentrated.

The masculine principle is a principle of the center, a principle of power, active and sudden as the spark and the power of will.

The white lady who haunts the valley comes to visit the alchemist at night, beautiful as the imprecise image, changeable as a dream, fugitive as love itself. From one point of view, a psychonaalysis narrow one, such constructs are both bastard art and bastard science, combining the limitations of the two with the genuine achievements of neither.

But the initial source is impure: Jun 17, Eddie Watkins rated it really liked it Shelves: In a somewhat paradoxical way we might well state chat the age of chipped stone is the age of the tormented stone, whereas the age of the polished stone is the age of the caressed stone.

Psychoanalysjs, whose books went through a great number of editions, wrote in Finally they would resort to chips and coal which often did not arrive in time; after the logs had been turned over a good many times, I would succeed in getting hold of the fire tongs, a feat that requires patience, audacity and fife luck. Cover your sides with its dazzling folds. When the unconscious secret harmonics of rubbing are lacking, when they have a poor resonance in dry and austere souls, immediately the act of rubbing, restored to its psychoabalysis mechanical aspect, loses its power of explanation.


Psychoanalytically speaking, cleanliness is really a form of uncleanliness.

Once ex- tinguished, how would he have been able to rekindle it? Our theory would appear less daring if the reader would only free baxhelard from an intransigent utilitarianism and would 2 7 Psychoanalysis of Fire cease to imagine prehistoric man as being automatically subject to misfomme and necessity.

It is there that the heat is diffused and equalized, that it becomes indistinct like the contour of a dream. On the night preceding the ceremony, the fire, lf has been burn- ing for a whole year, is allowed to go out. It is a pleasure for the good child sitting prudently by the hearth; yet it punishes any disobedience when the child wishes to play too close to its flames.

The Psychoanalysis Of Fire

Prim- itive man or Max Muller? This communion at the interior, this thermal sympathy, will, in the work bacheladr Novalis, find its symbol in the descent into the depths of the mountain, into the grotto and the mine. This very special and yet very general kind of reverie leads to a true complex in which are united the love and the respect for fire, the instinct for living and the instinct for dying.

As a matter of fact, we shall demonstrate that our intuitions of fire — more perhaps than of any other phe- nomenon — are heavily charged with fallacies from the past. Paperback paychoanalysis, pages.

Alcohol and Water that Flames.

The Psychoanalysis of Fire

Science is formed rather on a reverie than on an experiment, and it takes a good many experiments to dispel the mists of the dream. The units of this constructing power are analogy and identity, which appear in liter- ature as the figures of simile and metaphor. Virginie and he ate part of this cabbage raw and the other part cooked under the embers and found both equally tasty.

Why have I nor been called upon to contemplate this admirable spectacle in all its horrors?