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Hartman, J.J. (1986). Psychoanalytic Study of Society. X, 1984: The Passion of Lucretius. Charles P. Ducey. Pp. 269-300.. Psychoanal Q., 55:199.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Psychoanalytic Study of Society. X, 1984: The Passion of Lucretius. Charles P. Ducey. Pp. 269-300.

(1986). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 55:199

Psychoanalytic Study of Society. X, 1984: The Passion of Lucretius. Charles P. Ducey. Pp. 269-300.

John J. Hartman

In a well-organized and scholarly paper, Ducey argues that Lucretius' philosophical poem, De Rerum Natura, can serve to demonstrate unconscious motivation in a work of genius. Specifically, he uses close structural and textual scrutiny of the poem to demonstrate how the Epicurean theory of the universe serves as an adaptive attempt to resolve the poet's unconscious conflicts relating to oedipal issues. This indictment of passion derives from conflicts surrounding a primal scene fantasy leading to a sadistic interpretation of love and sex that permeates the poem. Structural and psychoanalytic interpretation of style and imagery show the various ways in which the primal scene fantasy is worked over with the goal of resolving the conflict, only to have it recur in the end.

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Article Citation

Hartman, J.J. (1986). Psychoanalytic Study of Society. X, 1984. Psychoanal. Q., 55:199

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