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Schwartz, M.M. (1983). Sign and Subject. Semiotic and Psychoanalytic Investigations Into Poetry: By Daniel Laferrière. Lisse, Holland: Peter de Ridder Press, 1978. 103 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 52:126-129.

(1983). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 52:126-129

Sign and Subject. Semiotic and Psychoanalytic Investigations Into Poetry: By Daniel Laferrière. Lisse, Holland: Peter de Ridder Press, 1978. 103 pp.

Review by:
Murray M. Schwartz

Although its title might lead one to expect a rather ominously complex and ponderous study, Sign and Subject is actually a short book consisting of six chapters, each containing some observations on the relationship of semiotics, psychoanalysis, and poetics. Laferrière sets out to "juggle" these disciplines so as to "puncture" their boundaries. His aims are modest but serious. His overriding purpose is to bring the psychoanalytic idea of the "subject" or person into productive intercourse with semiotic concepts that have developed without a notion of the role of motives, affects, and personal voice in linguistic structure and meaning. He is especially interested in doing so for the special form of language called poetry.

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