Psychoanalytic Anthropology and the Cultural Unconscious in American Life
Author: Howard F. Stein
In this book, the author presents a pioneering interpretation of culture as constituting a dynamic relationship between the visible “crust” and the elusive “core” of social life. He meticulously maps the role of the unconscious in shaping much of American life in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. He crosses and transcends disciplinary boundaries in studies of September 11, 2001, the 1999 Columbine High School massacre, the execution of Timothy McVeigh, the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, the 1999 Worcester, Massachusetts fire, and the eruption of hypernationalism and xenophobia in nations and workplaces — all as cultural phenomena with a psychodynamic core. He shows how the experience of loss in the face of massive social change often leads to equally massive defence against the experience of mourning. Beneath the Crust of Culture will be of interest not only for behavioural and social science professionals, but also for a lay public interested in understandings of culture deeper than the surface of the news and of official pronouncements.
An Overview of American Online Diaries and Blogs
Author: Viviane Serfaty
The Mirror and the Veil offers a unique perspective on the phenomenon of online personal diaries and blogs. Blending insights from literary criticism, from psychoanalytical theory and from social sciences, Viviane Serfaty identifies the historical roots of self-representational writing in America and studies the original features it has developed on the Internet. She perceptively analyzes the motivations of bloggers and the repercussions their writings may have on themselves and on American society at large. This book will be of interest to specialists in American Studies, to students in literature, communication, psychology and sociology, as well as to anyone endeavoring to understand the new set of practises created by Internet users in America.
A Psychoanalytic Study of Henry James
Author: Ronnie Bailie
In this compact but highly concentrated study, the author unites clinical and literary critical skills in an attempt to go beyond familiar psychological commentary on Henry James and conduct a detailed and rigorous psychoanalytic investigation into recurring and psychologically significant patterns in his major and minor fiction. Drawing freely on material from notebooks, letters, and other biographical sources, the volume centres on James's unconscious fantasies concerning the human body, mostly the damaged or incomplete human body. These core fantasies are firmly placed at the root of James's creativeness. While one of these fantasies of physical mutilation finds expression in the famous “obscure hurt” of James's late teens, the author develops a hypothesis concerning their much earlier history and their place in the larger psychological constellation of the James family. Accordingly, Henry James Senior, his wife Mary, together with William and Alice James, all figure largely in the intricate and perilous family context of Henry's creative activity. This book also includes original factual research, casting sidelights on matters such as the relation between James's early work and that of Dr Silas Weir Mitchell, and on the early history of psychoanalysis in the United States, including William James's meeting with Freud and his view of early psychoanalytic thinking, and Henry's contact as a patient with early psychoanalytic practitioners at the beginning of the twentieth century.
Early American Psychology and Fiction