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Wilson, E., Jr. (1984). Revue Française De Psychanalyse, XLIII. 1979: Concerning the Uncanny. Reflections on Castration, Myth and Death. Michel Ledoux. Pp. 469-481.. Psychoanal Q., 53:148-148.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Revue Française De Psychanalyse, XLIII. 1979: Concerning the Uncanny. Reflections on Castration, Myth and Death. Michel Ledoux. Pp. 469-481.

(1984). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 53:148-148

Revue Française De Psychanalyse, XLIII. 1979: Concerning the Uncanny. Reflections on Castration, Myth and Death. Michel Ledoux. Pp. 469-481.

Emmett Wilson, Jr.

The author feels that Freud, in his essay on the uncanny, did not sufficiently explain why experiences of the uncanny evoke feelings of anxiety and a strange vacillation of identity. Ledoux's hypothesis to explain this focuses on the human problem of death. The sensation of uncanniness arises when there is something within us which begins to function independently of ourselves. Ledoux distinguishes between functions that one can control and those that one cannot control. On the level of ordinary experience, examples would include changes in the sex organs and orgastic release. This presence in the self of an "other" distinct from the self leads to the feeling of uncanniness. He develops the theme of the double, with reference to Henry James's short story, "The Jolly Corner," in which there is a collision of different structural levels of the self. It is the same with myths, for they are inscribed in each of us but are not ourselves. The themes of myths show this in frequent splitting, doubling, returning to the womb, etc. Psychoanalysis, art, myth, and science are various modalities which enable us to encounter the forces of nature over which we are not masters.

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Article Citation

Wilson, E., Jr. (1984). Revue Française De Psychanalyse, XLIII. 1979. Psychoanal. Q., 53:148-148

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