This text presents some specific elements of psychoanalytic listening to characterize its position regarding the language according to the structural model. Considering the technical indications at different moments in Freud’s work and in Lacan’s contributions, we describe the fundamental aspects of clinical listening, as well as its guiding linguistic principles. We observe the importance of the analyst’s reserve ─ the abstinence of criticism ─ and evaluated the role of temporality in the use of language and the two rhetorical figures that are fundamental representatives of psychism. After having established this, we situate the perspective of listening in a historical dimension from which we question the role of knowledge in the Socratic maieutic method according to Plato’s Theaetetus text. We then approach old aspects of listening based on descriptions made in Aristophanes’ comedy, which allowed to prove how fundamental elements of maieutics are still present in contemporary clinical listening, operating in the discourse of the analyst as a synchronic factor that was made possible by language.
Listening; Psychoanalysis; Maieutic Method; Suspended Attention; Aristophanes