Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
:
Login
Tip: To use the Information icon…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

The Information icon (an i in a circle) will give you valuable information about PEP Web data and features. You can find it besides a PEP Web feature and the author’s name in every journal article. Simply move the mouse pointer over the icon and click on it for the information to appear.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Schmukler, A.G. (1990). American Imago. XLV, 1988: King Lear, King Leir and Incest Wishes. Mark J. Blechner. Pp. 309-325.. Psychoanal Q., 59:519.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: American Imago. XLV, 1988: King Lear, King Leir and Incest Wishes. Mark J. Blechner. Pp. 309-325.

(1990). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 59:519

American Imago. XLV, 1988: King Lear, King Leir and Incest Wishes. Mark J. Blechner. Pp. 309-325.

Anital G. Schmukler

The author examines King Lear's banishment of his favorite daughter, an action which generations of critics have attempted to explain. Lear's unconscious passion for Cordelia leads him to ask of her that which she cannot grant. The author suggests that as Lear loved Cordelia the most, he must have known her best. Thus, on some level, he must have anticipated her response. When she is deprived of a dowry, Burgundy emerges as "noble" for refusing to marry her—refusing to come between an aging father and his favorite daughter. The links between Cordelia and the fool are demonstrated clearly, as is Lear's passion for the truth, except as expressed by Cordelia. The True Chronicle History of King Leir, one of Shakespeare's sources, sets forth a much more rational plot. Leir rhymes with "there," and the author suggests that Shakespeare intended to convey the meaning of "leer," with respect to the King's incestuous longings. Cordella, in the early play, is changed to Cordelia—Cor de Lear—"the heart of Lear, Lear's Love." All who are familiar with Shakespeare's love of word play will acknowledge these as possible reasons for the seemingly minor alterations. King Lear's character development is traced in a lucid, convincing manner. The author also underscores another significant theme in the play: the struggle between fathers and their children (Lear and his daughters, and Gloucester and his sons), the exploration of which Freud simply dismissed.

- 519 -

Article Citation

Schmukler, A.G. (1990). American Imago. XLV, 1988. Psychoanal. Q., 59:519

Copyright © 2019, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.