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Schmukler, A.G. (1989). American Imago. XLIV, 1987: Huysmans' "À rebours": the Psychodynamics of Regression. Laurence M. Porter. Pp. 51-64.. Psychoanal Q., 58:509.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: American Imago. XLIV, 1987: Huysmans' "À rebours": the Psychodynamics of Regression. Laurence M. Porter. Pp. 51-64.

(1989). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 58:509

American Imago. XLIV, 1987: Huysmans' "À rebours": the Psychodynamics of Regression. Laurence M. Porter. Pp. 51-64.

Anita G. Schmukler

Huysmans' 1884 novel, À rebours (Against the Grain), "marked the onset and the high point of the international Decadent movement in literature." His hero displayed clear psychopathology, and he attempted, through free association, "to understand his own psychosomatic symptoms." Porter observes that previous commentators have directed attention to oedipal aspects of the story, ignoring preoedipal factors. He addresses the struggle between intrapsychic forces, which results ultimately in compromise. The repressed ideation of characters in the novel is presented in the form of dreams and fantasies. To a strictly oedipal viewpoint, Porter adds an additional contributing element in the "schizoid fear of dismemberment." Various aspects of compromise solutions are traced, and an effort to preserve object relations is central. The link between Huysmans' symptoms and those of the novel's hero is made explicit.

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Article Citation

Schmukler, A.G. (1989). American Imago. XLIV, 1987. Psychoanal. Q., 58:509

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