School of Culture and Communication - Research Publications

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    Repulsion and Day-dreaming: Freud Writing Freud
    Beginning with a reflection on our helplessness in the face of our own discoveries about ourselves in the course of living, this paper outlines the several ways in which psychoanalysis has documented and constructed this helplessness; in turn, Freud’s own writings can be read as his own ‘helpless’ response to early experiences. This paper offers a reading of Freud’s 1907 essay, ‘Creative writers and day-dreaming’ as an unconscious expression of his fear of repulsion (in himself and from others), matched to a desire to seduce the reader. For Freud, though, repulsion is inescapable, for creative writing in his view is never more than foreplay. What then of writing that confronts and unsettles?