Subject to Ourselves : Social Theory, Psychoanalysis and Postmodernity
This book examines current debates about modernity and postmodernity from the viewpoint of psychoanalytic theory. The author develops a novel account of postmodernity that supplants current understandings of 'fragmented selves'. Using psychoanalytic theory as the basis for a fresh reassessment of the nature of modernity and postmodernity, Elliott analyses changing experiences of selfhood, desire, interpersonal relations, culture and globalization.Elliott argues that postmodernity heralds 'the end of codes'. For better or for worse, postmodernity promotes a reflexive mapping of ourselves, a mapping of selves multiple, other and strange. Subject to Ourselves provides fascinating insights into postmodern culture and ideology and includes a diverse set of case studies, including the role of fantasy in the Bosnian war, the debate over sexual seduction in psychoanalysis, and the cultural uses of media in the O. J. Simpson trial. It will be essential reading for students and professionals of social and political theory, psychoanalytic studies, psychology and cultural studies, as well as those with an interest in the modernity/postmodernity debate.
- Hardback | 192 pages
- 152 x 229 x 19.05mm | 399g
- 01 Apr 1996
- Polity Press
- Oxford, United Kingdom
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Table of contents
Introduction. 1. The Ambivalence of Identity. 2. Contradictions of the Imagination. 3. The Epic of Mastery. 4. Postmodern Contexts, Plural Worlds. 5. Postmodernity, or Modernity in Reverse. Notes. Index.
"An impressive achievement. Elliott engages novel interventions in established debates and controversies, and through the use of these discourses he makes his own important statement about each. This book establishes him as a truly interdisciplinary cultural theorist." Jeffrey Prager, University of California "The book is acute, multiform and provocative." The Australian "This book not only fills an important gap in the literature, for it summarizes a debate that is scattered across a decade of rather difficult texts, but it also offers a resolution that is sensible and grounded in the best current thinking. It will be widely read by graduate students, faculty, and professionals in the humanities and social sciences." Choice "Compelling ... all readers will benefit from Elliott's sustained effort to introduce psychoanalytic discourse into contemporary social theory." Australian Journal of Political Science "Elliott presents a bold and compelling argument regarding the links between the unconscious imagination and its elaboration in the broader public sphere of knowledge, politics and social relations. This is an informative and enjoyable book, which will be of use to students and academics working in psychosocial studies. It is accessibly written and provides useful summaries of the different theories and debates in cultural and psychoanalytic theory. Recommended." Radical Philosophy