Arguing With the Phallus: Feminist, Queer and Postcolonial by Jan Campbell

By Jan Campbell

What can psychoanalysis supply modern arguments within the fields of Feminism, Queer idea and Post-Colonialism? Jan Campbell introduces and analyses the best way that psychoanalysis has constructed and made complex types of subjectivity associated with problems with sexuality, ethnicity, gender, and heritage. through discussions of such influential and various figures as Lacan, Irigaray, Kristeva, Dollimore, Bhabha, Toni Morrison, and Alice Walker, Campbell makes use of psychoanalysis as a mediatory software in various debates around the human sciences, whereas additionally arguing for a metamorphosis of psychoanalytic concept itself.

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Additional info for Arguing With the Phallus: Feminist, Queer and Postcolonial Theory: A Psychoanalytic Contribution

Sample text

Part of the problem of the repressive hypothesis of the death drive is, as we have seen, its narcissistic aetiology. Freud equated narcissism with asociality and objectrelation love with sociality. To explain the representation of the body political psychoanalysis thus has to break down or deconstruct the division between the object-relating and the narcissistic ego. The next chapter will explore the historical frameworks of psychoanalysis and the different traditions that have informed both clinical and theoretical arenas.

As well as situating this violence inside, however, Kristeva also puts it outside as a requirement of a (Lacanian) symbolic. This symbolic signifies the linguistic structures and institutions of society that are historically reproducible. Moreover, as the socio-symbolic imposes 'sacrifice as its symbolic base', it follows that society and social identity are constructed in a violent and sacrificial relation to the woman and the mother. Patriarchal society is founded on the structural abjection of the maternal.

However, an alternative to the phallic insistence on the death drive, in terms of representing the body, can also hopefully construct different theories of cultural difference and the symbolic, in which the relation between real and imaginary, self and other, psyche and social are not narcissistically split, thus projecting violence onto some generalised phallic other. Recognition of difference in terms of gender, sexuality and race can imply a more positive narcissism or selflove that exists intersubjectively within the object relation, as well as being located in a pure fantasy (or intrapsychic) state.

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