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The Shell and the Kernel : Renewals of Psychoanalysis, Volume 1
Nicolas Abraham and Maria Torok | Edited, translated, and with an Introduction by Nicholas T. Rand
University of Chicago Press / Softcover / Aug 1994
9780226000886 (ISBN-10: 0226000885)
price: $56.95 (may be subject to change)
280 pages
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This volume is a superb introduction to the richness and originality of Abraham and Torok's approach to psychoanalysis and their psychoanalytic approach to literature. Abraham and Torok advocate a form of psychoanalysis that insists on the particularity of any individual's life story, the specificity of texts, and the singularity of historical situations. In what is both a critique and an extension of Freud, they develop interpretive strategies with powerful implications for clinicians, literary theorists, feminists, philosophers, and all others interested in the uses and limits of psychoanalysis.

Central to their approach is a general theory of psychic concealment, a poetics of hiding. Whether in a clinical setting or a literary text, they search out the unspeakable secret as a symptom of devastating trauma revealed only in linguistic or behavioral encodings. Their view of trauma provides the linchpin for new psychic and linguistic structures such as the "transgenerational phantom," an undisclosed family secret handed down to an unwitting descendant, and the intra-psychic secret or "crypt," which entombs an unspeakable but consummated desire. Throughout, Abraham and Torok seek to restore communication with those intimate recesses of the mind which are, for one reason or another, denied expression.

Classics of French theory and practice, the essays in volume one include four previously uncollected works by Maria Torok. Nicholas Rand supplies a substantial introductory essay and commentary throughout. Abraham and Torok's theories of fractured meaning and their search for coherence in the face of discontinuity and disruption have the potential to reshape not only psychoanalysis but all disciplines concerned with issues of textual, oral, or visual interpretation.

Table of Contents

Note on the Translation
Introduction: Renewals of Psychoanalysis
Nicholas T. Rand
1: Fantasy: An Attempt to Define Its Structure and Operation
Maria Torok
2: The Meaning of "Penis Envy" in Women
Maria Torok
3: The Shell and the Kernel: The Scope and Originality of Freudian
Nicolas Abraham
4: The Illness of Mourning and the Fantasy of the Exquisite Corpse
Maria Torok
5: Mourning or Melancholia: Introjection versus Incorporation
Nicolas Abraham, Maria Torok.
6: "The Lost Object - Me": Notes on Endocryptic Identification
Nicolas Abraham, Maria Torok.
7: The Topography of Reality: Sketching a Metapsychology of Secrets
Nicolas Abraham, Maria Torok
8: Self-to-Self Affliction: Notes of a Conversation on "Psychosomatics"
Nicolas Abraham, Maria Torok.
9: Notes on the Phantom: A Complement to Freud's Metapsychology
Nicolas Abraham
10: Story of Fear: The Symptoms of Phobia - the Return of the Repressed or
the Return of the Phantom?
Maria Torok
11: The Phantom of Hamlet or The Sixth Act, preceded by The Intermission of
Nicolas Abraham
12: Psychoanalysis Lithographica
Nicolas Abraham
13: Unpublished by Freud to Fliess: Restoring an Oscillation
Maria Torok
14: A Remembrance of Things Deleted: Between Sigmund Freud and Emmy von N.
Maria Torok
15: Theoretra: An Alternative to Theory
Maria Torok
Selected Bibliography

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