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Intimate Revolt : The Powers and Limits of Psychoanalysis
Kristeva, Julia
Columbia University Press / Softcover / 2003-09-01 / 023111415X
Psychoanalysis / Cultural Studies
price: $39.00 (may be subject to change)
392 pages
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Julia Kristeva, herself a product of the famous May '68 Paris student uprising, has long been fascinated by the concept of rebellion and revolution. Psychoanalysts believe that rebellion guarantees our independence and creative capacities, but is revolution still possible? Confronted with the culture of entertainment, can we build and nurture a culture of revolt, in the etymological and Proustian sense of the word: an unveiling, a return, a displacement, a reconstruction of the past, of memory, of meaning? In the first part of the book, Kristeva examines the manner in which three of the most unsettling modern writers—Aragon, Sartre, and Barthes—affirm their personal rebellion.

In the second part of the book, Kristeva ponders the future of rebellion. She maintains that the “new world order” is not favorable to revolt. “What can we revolt against if power is vacant and values corrupt?” she asks. Not only is political revolt mired in compromise among parties whose differences are less and less obvious, but an essential component of European culture—a culture of doubt and criticism—is losing its moral and aesthetic impact.

"Kristeva . . . follows up The Sense and Non-Sense of Revolt with this important, interdisciplinary tour de force." — Library Journal

"The reader will encounter in these pages the literary music of allusive, profound passages that uniquely characterize the expression of Kristeva's thoughts." — Choice

"Kristeva's work is an intricate mix of cultural criticism and psychoanalysis. . . . Kristeva's call to return to the intimate is salutory in a world given over to the dictates of production and consumption alone. The comments on patriotism, nationalism, hospitality and cosmopolitanism are politically astute and ethically humanist." — Pramod K. Nayar, Philosophy in Review
Chapter 1. What Revolt Today?

The Dignity of Revolt (The Novel)

Man in Revolt (Retrospective Return)

Revolt as Jouissance and Dispersion (Psychoanalysis)

Negativity in Revolt (Philosophy and...Freud)

Paradoxical Logics (Resistances to Psychoanalysis)

Intimacy in Revolt (The Imaginary)

Chapter 2. Can Forgiveness Heal?

The Trilogy of Evil

Donation or Sadness

The Consciousness of Fault (Heidegger and Freud)

Against Guilt: Rebirth

The Poiesis of Interpretation

Depression at the Edge of Words (the Story of Anne)

Chapter 3. The Scandal of the Timeless

Psychoanalysis is not Intersubjectivity

The Subversion of Temporality

The Freudian Scandal

Three Figures of the Analytical Timeless: 1. The Memory-Trace (Erinnerungsspur or Errinnerungrest), Working-through (Durcharbeitung), The Dissolution of Transference-Homo natura and Homo analyticus

Chapter 4. The Intimate: from Sense to the Sensible (Logics, Jouissance, Style)

Once more, On the Soul (organic, animal, general)

Images, loquela, Jouissance (Augustine, Loyola, Sade)

Psychical Life as Jouissance

Science and Experience: Counter-transference

The Taste for the Singular Life (Style)

Plato's Cave Hides a Sensory Cave

The "Second Dwelling" (Proust's Dream)

Writing, Therapy, Beauty

Between word-signs and word fetishes: Interpretation

Chapter 5. Fantasy and Cinema

Organisms of Mixed Race (Didier, the Collages Man)

Fear and Spectacular Seduction

Fantasy and the Imaginary: The Specular

The Representable Conflict

Cinema and Evil

Chapter 6. Barthes: The Savor of Disenchantment


A Position: Writing Against

Modern Man in all his States: Vices and Affections

Myth: A Type of Speech Chosen by History

Chapter 7. Barthes: Constructor of Language, Constructor of the Sensory

The Spiritual Exercises of Loyola

Who is the Subject of this Polyphony?


The loquela

Indifference and Suspension

Chapter 8. Barthes: The Intractable Lover


The Jardin du Luxembourg


Outside Language

Sensory vs. Sexual: The New Lovers

N. W. P.: The Non-will-to-possess

Chapter 9. Sartre: The Imaginary and Nothingness

The Fatal Freedom of Consciousness

Negativity, "I," "Bad Faith"

What Transcendence?

Who is of Bad Faith? or, Atheism

The Realized Imaginary: The Totalizing Spectacle

Chapter 10. Sartre: Freedom as Questioning

Negation at its Origin

Symbolic Castration: A Question (The Story of Martine)

Before Judgment: Repulsion or Freedom?

The Freudian Attempt to Articulate the Drive and the Symbol

Childhood: Self-Destruction or the Power of Words: The Words

Chapter 11. Sartre: Again, the Imaginary, Fantasy, Spectacle

The Mental Image: Virtual Nonbelief

The Consubstantiality of Image and Thought

Lack or Lie?

Body and Image: From Hallucination to Fantasy

Back to the Unconscious

Chapter 12. Giving the Game Away out of Anticipation

From the Political to the Intimate, from the Feminine to the Impossible

What's it about?

Why "Blanche"? The Woman and the Linguist

"Gaiffier! Gaiffier! Go back to your place. Where is he?"

"And then I realized the trickery..."

More on Communism and the Destiny of the Question

Julia Kristeva is a practicing psychoanalyst and professor of linguistics at the University of Paris. She is the author of many acclaimed books, including, most recently, Hannah Arendt and Melanie Klein. She lives in Paris. Jeanine Herman is a translator who lives in New York City.

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