As criticism settles into an end-of-century milieu, its appropriations of psychoanalysis are increasingly polarized: while the last ten years have witnessed a spate of virulent and provocative attacks on psychoanalysis in general and Freud in particular, at no time has psychoanalysis burgeoned and thrived so strongly in literary theory and practice. In this thoroughly updated version of Elizabeth Wright's classic text, the author explores the ways in which Freudian theory has become essential to our experience of literature. Wright's comprehensive, historical approach to literary theory and practice since Freud loses none of its sharpness for its breadth: from Artaud to Zizek, Foucault to Kristeva, Psychoanalytic Criticism maintains a sharp focus on our experience of language, literature and consciousness.
Overviews the relation of psychoanalytic theory to theories of literature and the arts, and looks at changes in critical practice that developments in both domains have produced. Beginning with Freud, this account deals with those psychoanalysts and critics who have been major contributors to the criticism of literature, the arts, and popular culture. Included also are theorists, such as Derrida and Foucault, who have made an impact on psychoanalytic criticism. This new edition includes insights of psychoanalysis itself that would contribute to the understanding of recent shifts in ideology. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknew.com)