This summer I realized that I've never been able to write a 'real' essay. One friend explained it to me sometime ago as: you take two scholars who argue about a primary text and explicate their arguments and then say which one is more right or point to an important factor that makes both of their positions inadequate.
I've always written papers as if I was a peer of those writing the primary texts (i.e. Kant, Nietzsche, Freud, Jung, etc.). I've barely looked at secondary sources until this last year.
I understand this as me triangulating at the anal Oedipal complex.
One quick aside: I hope at some point I can name every complex so that the Oedipus complex will truly just be one form of triangulation among many based upon mental bisexuality.
Rather than the absolute ego ideal that is known as the epistemophillic drive or part of the 'true self' in the writings of others, the anal oedipal draws its power from envy. I try to position myself in relation to the primary text authors as if I were a peer and in conversations with others I have performed verbal acrobatics in order to conceal lack of knowledge or error. I also think that my intense anxiety in reading conference papers is the anal Oedipal signal anxiety before the horde.
The phallic oedipal subject supposed to lead upon full internalization becomes one's procreator or someone taken to be formative to who one is. Under him one belongs to a group mediated through the signifier (family, religious group, etc.). With the anal oedipal subject supposed to know it is a pre-signifier horde that is ruled by an omnipotent (body-neurotic) or omniscient (mind-schizoid) father imago.
I envy the omniscient subject supposed to know and assume the place of a peer to him while at the same time fearing that I'll be 'castrated'-- be shown to have made a simple or error (an amateur). It's as if the anal father will appear among the horde at a conference or public gathering and humiliate me.