James Joyce and the Problem of Psychoanalysis

Research output: Book/ReportBook

37 Citations (SciVal)


From its very beginning, psychoanalysis sought to incorporate the aesthetic into its domain. Despite Joyce's deliberate attempt in his writing to resist this powerful hermeneutic, his work has been confronted by a long tradition of psychoanalytic readings. Luke Thurston argues that this very antagonism holds the key to how psychoanalytic thinking can still open up new avenues in Joycean criticism and literary theory. In particular, Thurston shows that Jacques Lacan's response to Joyce goes beyond the 'application' of theory: rather than diagnosing Joyce's writing or claiming to have deciphered its riddles, Lacan seeks to understand how it can entail an unreadable signature, a unique act of social transgression that defies translation into discourse. Thurston imaginatively builds on Lacan's work to illuminate Joyce's place in a wide-ranging literary genealogy that includes Shakespeare, Hogg, Stevenson and Wilde. This study should be essential reading for all students of Joyce, literary theory and psychoanalysis.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages232
ISBN (Electronic)9780511485329
ISBN (Print)0521835909, 9780521835909
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2004
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'James Joyce and the Problem of Psychoanalysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this