In a Time of Plagues
On March 12, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared a global pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2, better known as COVID-19 or simply as the coronavirus, a spectrality invisible to the naked eye that has affected us intensely, in ways that we are still in the process of understanding. The COVID-19 event can be thought of, from a psychoanalytic perspective, as an encounter with the Lacanian Real, a concept that refers to that which is outside the Symbolic and Imaginary and that has a compulsion to repeat itself. This pandemic, our modern plague, has traversed our experience and has impacted, materially and fantasmatically, notions such as space, time, body, affect, culture, and politics. This collection of 15 essays, written during the first wave of the pandemic and taking on renewed significance now that we are in a second wave, presents theoretical and critical psychoanalytic responses to the pandemic from one of three perspectives: clinical practice, culture, and politics.