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Enjoying What We Don't Have


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First book to identify the political project inherent in the fundamental tenets of psychoanalysis

Table of Contents

Introduction: Psychoanalytic Hostility to PoliticsPart I: SubjectivityChapter 1: The Formation of SubjectivityChapter 2: The Economics of the DriveChapter 3: Class Status and EnjoymentChapter 4: Sustaining AnxietyChapter 5: Changing the WorldPart II: SocietyChapter 6: The Appeal of SacrificeChapter 7: Against KnowledgeChapter 8: The Politics of FantasyChapter 9: Beyond Bare LifeChapter 10: The Necessity of BeliefChapter 11: The Case of the Missing SignifierConclusion: A Society of the Death Drive

About the Author

Todd McGowan is an associate professor of film studies at the University of Vermont. He is the author of several books, most recently The Fictional Christopher Nolan and Out of Time: Desire in Atemporal Cinema.


"Psychoanalysis does not provide new positive political programs; it just discerns the contours of a 'negativity, ' of a disruptive force--the death drive--which poses a threat to every stable collective link. Based on this insight, different psychoanalysts advocated views which were revolutionary, liberal, or conservative. But is this all that is to be said? McGowan's book introduces order into this mess by way of drawing a radically new line of separation: the true lesson of psychoanalysis is that emancipatory politics should not be based on any notion of the common Good, but on the negativity of the death drive itself. The consequences of this idea are shattering, taking us far beyond all the standard versions of Freudo-Marxism--nothing remains the same along the axis psychoanalysis-politics after "Enjoying What We Don't Have"." --Slavoj Zizek, author of "Living in the End Times"--Slavoj Zizek (03/25/2013)

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