Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Jackson, Jeffrey M. "Review of Gabriele Schwab, ed. DERRIDA, DELEUZE, PSYCHOANALYSIS." METAPSYCHOLOGY ONLINE REVIEWS April, 8, 2008.

Schwab, Gabriele, ed. Derrida, Deleuze, Psychoanalysis. New York: Columbia UP, 2007. Derrida, Deleuze, Psychoanalysis is an edited volume of essays which aims to serve as a tribute to the late Jacques Derrida. The book begins with a translated lecture by Derrida, and generally speaking the essays--apart from the last one--defend different aspects of the Derridean reading of psychoanalysis to critique or situate that of Gilles Deleuze and other prominent philosophers (Foucault, Agamben, Levinas, etc.). The essays reflect a dominant paradigm of Continental Philosophy common in the humanities, and if one works within this paradigm--or has an interest in critiquing it--the volume will definitely be of interest. The editor and the various authors, seem to be making two big claims. First, psychoanalysis is a mode of thought that can help us critically undermine the currently widespread dichotomy--which is said to plague philosophy and critical theory--between the psychological and the political. Second, Jacques Derrida's (and, in some cases, Deleuze's) reading of psychoanalysis provides the proper approach for articulating this potential within psychoanalysis. Granting the first, the second is far from self-evident, and it appears all the more unjustified, given the conspicuous lack of engagement with the psychoanalytic literature. As is common in such philosophical appropriations of Freud, the critics address themselves mainly to Oedipus and other supposedly metaphysical aspects of Freud's early theory, largely ignoring the broader implications of Freud's own writings on culture and aggression. Furthermore, Freud's other interpreters--Klein, Winnicott, Lacan, Adorno, Marcuse, Kristeva, etc.--several of whom pay more attention to Freud's cultural writings, are either merely glossed or omitted entirely from consideration. . . . Read the rest here:

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