Review on “Leonardo Lalon Lacan” by Bidhan Rebeireo | 2016-02-08 |

Review on “Leonardo Lalon Lacan” by Bidhan Rebeireo

Eliza Binte Elahi     8th February, 2016 11:36:48 printer

Review on “Leonardo Lalon Lacan” by Bidhan Rebeireo

Leonardo Lalol Lacan, by Bidhan Rebeiro , Oitijjhya , Bangla Bazar Dhaka , February 2015 . 127 pages. ISBN 978-984-776-189-3


On 11 December, 2015 I was reading an article titled “Philosophy in Film “written by Apurba Jahangir in The Daily Star. Actually Apurba has taken an interview of Bidhan Rebeireo . From that interview I came to know about Bidhan’s fascination, fact-finding interest and research.

Yes Bidhan Rebeireo the author of Leonardo Lalol Lacan, a journalist and working as the feature editor of and also runs an online film portal named So far he has 10 non- fiction publications regarding politics, philosophy and film. As a student of English Literature the title of the book grabbed my attention.


From the book reader will acquire the ethos of philosophy, music, art, theatre through 16 essays. The author felt a need for collecting some thoughts and making them available in a single volume. This makes the book extremely interesting. In the main body of the book the author discuss various paragraphs and equations from Leonardo, Jacques, Lacan, Lalon , Freud .Each and every essay will open a new thinking horizon for the readers.

The author shared his philosophy about Leonardo’s The Virgin of the Rocks --the history, the mystery. Bidhan indicates how the eye is attached to three ventricles, or chambers, in the brain. The first chamber gathers data, the middle one contains the senso comune (common sense) which processes data and houses the human soul, imagination and intellect. The third chamber stores memories. The two versions of the Virgin of the Rocks have generated continued debate amongst art historians. Scholars such as Pietro Marani, Martin Davies and William Cannall have compiled opposing theories on the subject while referencing the same material. Despite the discovery of original documents pertaining to the commission of the painting, researchers continue to argue over the following: why do two versions of the same painting exist that are both associated with Leonardo da Vinci, where did the original version go after its completion, and who was responsible for the second painting?. We can see diagrams of the head as if Leonardo had conducted an anatomical dissection but we know these largely depended on received opinion and his own imagination.

At the same time he sets out the measurements for the ideal proportions of the human head and intended his anatomical studies to form part of a treatise which he later hoped to write.

The three terms real, imaginary and symbolic provide a useful framework for understanding Lacan’s account of human psycho-sexual development.  The real which is always necessarily outside experience (because experience is only possible in the symbolic) denotes what we might imagine as the blissful state of pure being.  We start off as no more than mindless animalistic subjects awaiting access to the world of meaning.  But this “awaiting” can have no meaning itself except retrospectively as something imagined by someone who already occupies the world of meaning. 

Freud had made a distinction between image building—making identifications, equations between images (parents and others, brothers, sisters, friends, enemies, toys and other objects)—and analytic activities, embodied par excellence by the activity of the analyst as s/he provides interpretations that lead to successful psychoanalysis.  Only on the analytic level would a patient achieve the freedom to become active in realizing her own destiny in life.

The author also suggested that Lacan begins with this distinction but develops some more involved implications.  The symbolic function operates like an a priori structure (the notion of the Symbolic is derived from structuralism) made up of rules of behavior—language, kinship relations, relations of power, socially structured communities and groups that individuals are constrained by in their negotiations, agreements and disagreements.

 Reading and writing about the book was a huge undertaking and challenge. I was struck by the many literary techniques, but did not comprehend – and would not have necessarily – picked out all of the aspects as a recreational reader and it should be left to academics who actually analyse the language, phrases and expressions individually.      


Writer: Faculty of Arts, University of South Asia, Dhaka, Bangladesh