LEO BERSANI A FUTURE FOR ASTYANAX PDF

Additional Information In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Shorter Reviews for further discussion. He has done so with clarity, discrimination, and a sense of the complexity of the issues he writes about. On balance, Marxism and Literary Criticism is an instance of a shorter book being better than many longer ones on the same subject. We have become accustomed—and certainly most critics do little to upset this expectation—to think literary criticism as of only marginal relevance to philosophy.

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Additional Information In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Shorter Reviews for further discussion. He has done so with clarity, discrimination, and a sense of the complexity of the issues he writes about.

On balance, Marxism and Literary Criticism is an instance of a shorter book being better than many longer ones on the same subject. We have become accustomed—and certainly most critics do little to upset this expectation—to think literary criticism as of only marginal relevance to philosophy. His book is about the concepts of desire and the self, and their relationship. Here are two views of the self: A the sublimated, "tamed" desires, of the unified "adult" self; B the omnipotent play of limitless fantasy, without the presence of a stable self.

The adult self A requires a conflict with other adults: "one needs others to know what is desirable, at the same time that one needs to eliminate others in order to possess the objects which they have designated. The "deconstructed" self B fails to recognize the existence of other selves, and hence is really not a self at all. Many classic novelists show, in different ways, the conflict between unity of self and desire; in so doing they implicidy undermine the traditional novel. Thus, either desire cannot "be spoken" p.

Literatures of the "deconstructed" self use equally complex and varied devices. Far from being merely regressive, art thus can reveal possibilities for the loss of self that otherwise would remain undreamt of.

Such literature shows, implicidy, a recognition of the fundamental deceptions about the self and desire upon which the classical novel was based. Such a recognition is "the necessary point of departure" p. The value of literature, and criticism, is to teach us about desire and its relation to a fragmented or unified self. Paradoxically, the realistic novel offers a less fully human view of desire than the literature of the "deconstructed" self. Bersani, using a psychoanalytic framework, shows why psychoanalysis would be mistaken to think of this literature of the "deconstructed" self as merely regressive.

A Future for Astyanax deserves to be read widely and studied with care. Access options available:.

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