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Deleuze and the Unconscious

by Christian Kerslake

Part of the Continuum Studies in Continental Philosophy Series

Deleuze and the Unconscious Synopsis

By the end of the twentieth century, it had been almost forgotten that the Freudian account of the unconscious was only one of many to have emerged from the intellectual ferment of the second half of the 19th century. The philosophical roots of the concept of the unconscious in Leibniz, Kant, Schelling and Schopenhauer had also been occluded from view by the dominance of Freudianism. From his earliest work of the 1940s, until his final writings of the 1990s, Gilles Deleuze stood at odds with this dominant current, rejecting Freud as sole source for ideas about the unconscious. This most 'contemporary' of French philosophers acted as custodian of all the ideas that had been rejected by the proponents of the psychoanalytic model, carefully preserving them and, when possible, injecting them with new life. In 1950s and 60s Deleuze turned to Henri Bergson's theories of memory and instinct and to Carl Jung's theory of archetypes. In Difference and Repetition (1968) he conceived of a 'differential unconscious' based on Leibnizian principles. He was also immersed from the beginning in esoteric and occult ideas about the nature of the mind. Deleuze and the Unconscious shows how these tendencies combine in Deleuze's work to engender a wholly new approach to the unconscious, for which active relations to the unconscious are just as important as the better known pathologies of neurosis and psychosis.

Deleuze and the Unconscious Press Reviews

-Mention. The Chronicle ofHigher Education/ July 13, 2007 -Mention. The Chronicle of Higher Education/ July 13, 2007 This book, beyond being a superior work of scholarship, reveals an entire network of decisive investments and influences, scarcely grasped before, which underpin the entire course of Deleuze's philosophy. Kerslake's book is a landmark in English-language Deleuze scholarship, whose merits are many, and which thoroughly deserves to be widely read and discussed...The greatest promise of Kerslake's exceptional book is that Deleuze's philosophy will be turned to in all its richness and paradox. Without a doubt, there have been some very fine contributions to English-speaking Deleuze scholarship, but Kerslake has set a new high watermark. -Jonathan Roffe, Philosophy in Review

Book Information

ISBN: 9780826484888
Publication date: 8th March 2007
Author: Christian Kerslake
Publisher: Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd. an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Format: Hardback
Pagination: 208 pages
Categories: Psychoanalytical theory (Freudian psychology), Philosophy of mind,

About Christian Kerslake

Christian Kerslake is Research Fellow at the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy, Middlesex University.

More About Christian Kerslake

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