Psychoanalyses / Feminisms

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Bringing together twelve provocative and iconoclastic contributions by leading scholars and new voices, this book probes the complementary yet contested relations between various forms of contemporary psychoanalysis and feminism. The intention is not simply to juxtapose these two preeminent intellectual movements of the twentieth century, but to highlight the manifold nature of each. The contributors use and interrogate Freud, Lacan, Klein, Irigaray, Riviere, and Jessica Benjamin, as well as object-relations theory, self psychology, and Horneyan theory as they discuss the work of such writers as D. H. Lawrence, Emily Bronte, Virginia Woolf, and Kathy Acker.

If feminism has insisted that "the personal is political," psychoanalysis argues that no realm of human life is impervious to unconscious motives, which may subvert a subject's avowed intentions. Although Freud remains a point of reference, he is now important as a symptom of the crises of Western patriarchal culture as well as for his epoch-making theoretical ideas. Because feminism and psychoanalysis unsettle each other's complacencies, they rekindle their own radical potential, and what may be perhaps termed their "marriage" has proven, as this book amply shows, to be both enduring and fecund.

Contributors include Ranita Chatterjee, Patricia Reid Eldredge, David Galef,Claire Kahane, Lynne Layton, Veronique Machelidon, Michelle A. Masse, Peter L. Rudnytsky, Barbara Schapiro, Madelon Sprengnether, Maureen Turim, and David Willbern.
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About the author

Peter L. Rudnytsky is Professor of English at the University of Florida and a corresponding Member of the Institute for Contemporary Psychoanalysis in Los Angeles. He is the author of Freud and Oedipus and The Psychoanalytic Vocation: Rank, Winnicott, and the Legacy of Freud.

Andrew M. Gordon is Associate Professor of English at the University of Florida, and Director of the Institute for the Psychological Study of the Arts. He is the author of An American Dreamer: A Psychoanalytic Study of the Fictionof Norman Mailer.

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Additional Information

Publisher
SUNY Press
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Pages
238
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ISBN
9781438418230
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Best For
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Women's Studies
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Object relations, which emphasizes the importance of the preoedipal period and the infant-mother relationship, is considered by many analysts to be the major development in psychoanalytic theory since Freud. In this reinterpretation of its history Peter L. Rudnytsky focuses on two pivotal figures: Otto Rank, one of Freud's original and most brilliant disciples, who later broke away from psychoanalysis, and D. W. Winnicott, the leading representative of the Independent tradition in British psychoanalysis.

Rudnytsky begins with an overview arguing that object relations theory can synthesize the scientific and hermeneutic dimensions of psychoanalysis. He the uses the ideas of Rank and Winnicott to uncover the preoedipal aspects of Sophocles' Oedipus the King. After an appraisal of the relationship between Rank and Freud, he turns to Rank's neglected writings between 1924 and 1927 and shows how they anticipate contemporary object relations theory. Rudnytsky critically measures Winnicott's achievement against those of Heinz Kohut and Jacques Lacan, the founders of two competing schools of psychoanalysis, and compares Winnicott's life and work with Freud's. Next, using both published and unpublished accounts by the psychotherapist Harry Guntrip of his analyses with W. R. D. Fairbairn and Winnicott, he probes the personal and intellectual interactions among these three British clinicians. Rudnytsky concludes by advancing a psychoanalytic theory of the self as a rejoinder to the postmodernism that is the dominant ideology in literary studies today. In two appendices he makes available for the first time an English translation of Rank's "Genesis of the Object Relation" and a 1983 interview with Clare Winnicott.

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