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Regions of Sorrow: Anxiety and Messianism in Hannah Arendt and W.H. Auden

Regions of Sorrow: Anxiety and Messianism in Hannah Arendt and W.H. Auden BOOK REVIEWS/71 of artistic production—which, it bears noting, the “amoral Yahweh” utterly denies—is the founding gesture and defining mystification of bourgeois aesthetics. The very claim that The Book of the It “breaks free of ideological trammels” mires Rudnytsky’s own book all the more effectively in the same. There is a certain irony to all this. One of the many reasons that Rudnytsky considers object relations theory an advance over ego psychology is its ability to account for the social context and determinates of thought, which he accuses Freud of ignoring. But like the dog that doesn’t bark in Sherlock Holmes—the example is Rudnytsky’s (52)—what is ostensibly absent or elided is everywhere operable: psychoanalysis is no less a theory of the social for its strategic insistence on the priority of the psycho-sexual. Rudnytsky takes issue with Freud’s single-minded obsession with Oedipus, which, at least in the case of “Little Hans,” he construes as a “defense mechanism” designed to ward off Freud’s anxieties about the pre-Oedipal mother and his own Jewishness (54). The obsession with Oedipus is itself, however, “always already” a theory of the social. As Foucault insists: the psychoanalytic “guarantee that one would find the parents-children relationship at http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Comparative Literature Duke University Press

Regions of Sorrow: Anxiety and Messianism in Hannah Arendt and W.H. Auden

Comparative Literature , Volume 58 (1) – Jan 1, 2006

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2006 by University of Oregon
ISSN
0010-4124
eISSN
1945-8517
DOI
10.1215/-58-1-86
Publisher site
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Abstract

BOOK REVIEWS/71 of artistic production—which, it bears noting, the “amoral Yahweh” utterly denies—is the founding gesture and defining mystification of bourgeois aesthetics. The very claim that The Book of the It “breaks free of ideological trammels” mires Rudnytsky’s own book all the more effectively in the same. There is a certain irony to all this. One of the many reasons that Rudnytsky considers object relations theory an advance over ego psychology is its ability to account for the social context and determinates of thought, which he accuses Freud of ignoring. But like the dog that doesn’t bark in Sherlock Holmes—the example is Rudnytsky’s (52)—what is ostensibly absent or elided is everywhere operable: psychoanalysis is no less a theory of the social for its strategic insistence on the priority of the psycho-sexual. Rudnytsky takes issue with Freud’s single-minded obsession with Oedipus, which, at least in the case of “Little Hans,” he construes as a “defense mechanism” designed to ward off Freud’s anxieties about the pre-Oedipal mother and his own Jewishness (54). The obsession with Oedipus is itself, however, “always already” a theory of the social. As Foucault insists: the psychoanalytic “guarantee that one would find the parents-children relationship at

Journal

Comparative LiteratureDuke University Press

Published: Jan 1, 2006

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