❮Epub❯ ➞ Stay, Illusion! ➝ Author Jamieson Webster – Saudionline.co.uk

Stay, Illusion! summary Stay, Illusion! , series Stay, Illusion! , book Stay, Illusion! , pdf Stay, Illusion! , Stay, Illusion! df42625659 The Figure Of Hamlet Haunts Our Culture Like The Ghost Haunts Shakespeare S Melancholy Dane Arguably, No Literary Work Is Familiar To Us Everyone Knows At Least Six Words From Hamlet, And Most People Know Many Yet The Play Shakespeare S Longest Is Than Passing Strange, And It Becomes Even Complex When Considered Closely Reading Hamlet Alongside Other Writers, Philosophers, And Psychoanalysts Carl Schmitt, Walter Benjamin, Freud, Lacan, Nietzsche, Melville, And Joyce Simon Critchley And Jamieson Webster Go In Search Of A Particularly Modern Drama That Is As Much About Ourselves As It Is A Product Of Shakespeare S Imagination They Also Offer A Startling Interpretation Of The Action Onstage It Is Structured Around Nothing Or, In The Enigmatic Words Of The Player Queen, It Nothing Must From The Illusion Of Theater And The Spectacle Of Statecraft To The Psychological Interplay Of Inhibition And Emotion, Hamlet Discloses The Modern Paradox Of Our Lives How Thought And Action Seem To Pull Against Each Other, The One Annulling The Possibility Of The Other As A Counterweight To Hamlet S Melancholy Paralysis, Ophelia Emerges As The Play S True Hero In Her Madness, She Lives The Love Of Which Hamlet Is Incapable Avoiding The Customary Clich S About The Timelessness Of The Bard, Critchley And Webster Show The Timely Power Of Hamlet To Cast Light On The Intractable Dilemmas Of Human Existence In A World That Is Rotten And Out Of Joint


10 thoughts on “Stay, Illusion!

  1. says:

    Hamlet is bereft of his desire, cannot act, and all the objects that surround him are degraded and rendered fungible women are whores stepfathers are liars mothers are criminals the world is rotten and putrefying.My impressions of this text were very up and down, mostly down That response wedges open a question as to what were my expectations Most simply, I went to the text for Simon Critchley He has been brilliant but has recently disappointed me, his pop ruminations on mortality proved rather annoying So Critchley and his wife Jamieson Webster, a psychoanalyst, penned this swarm of brief essays on Hamlet Too coy to be simply analytical, instead Stay, Illusion scampers about from approach to approach, fingering the pulse of Nietzsche, Carl Schmitt, Freud and Lacan for their takes on Prince of Denmark and fomenting a crackle and foam of hogwash Do weed further Hamlet theorizing Should married couples collaborate on authorship Why the FUCK, was Derrida s Spectres of Marx not mentioned There is a later echo devoted to Joyce and Bataille, but the damage had already been inflicted Ophelia is the hero of the play, akin to Antigone but pungent and sexual Politics do matter critically contextually, as a free association between Gertrude and Mary Queen of Scots couldn t be allowed to hatch on stage I m curious what Melville would ve though of that explanation.


  2. says:

    Wouldst eat crocodile I ll do itI picked up this Hamlet thing cause I was looking for some Lacan that the library didn t have But this Dane popped up Piqued as I was, as the writer was the same French philosopher whose novel I d recently read and recommended Which, might I add, The uh Thea was the only one to mark it to read bunch of jerks Ah, I don t mean that Anyway, I thought that was a cool rhyme Plusbonus going with a rhyme Slick read Its premise Lots of bright minds were keen on Hamlet and had a few takes of their own It starts historically with Walt Benj and Hegel than moves to psychology with Freud and Lacan, and the third part, I ll save as a surprise I ll only say that no of these mofo s had the clamchowder to take their ideas to the stage Did Freud or Lacan ever direct Hamlet No And now their dead Not me though, if everyone has to do Hamlet in their lifetime, I ve served mine, and I ll plug my show at the end of this review The two philosophers would probably find this lobby level stuff, but, for innocent tyros looking to sneak into the Hilton on the Hill of high theory, its a skeleton key with a janitors disguise, forsure Kind of, I mean, what I thought was I m glad I m not interested in psychoanalysis, I feel like it would terrify me.


  3. says:

    The Hamlet Doctrine seems to be that knowledge prevents action As a doctrine this seems to be of limited value as a reading of the play Hamlet it is both brutally reductive Hamlet s problem is yet again neatly identified and extremely dubious When Freud hung the name Oedipus on an unproven and unprovable hypothesis about the psychosexual development of males in middle class Vienna in the 19th century, it was a stroke of advertising brilliance Forget the fact that the Oedipus of Sophocles play does not want to kill his father or sleep with his mother, nor does he castrate himself at the end of the play, it was a superb piece of what is now called Branding There are people who think it s a universal, ahistorical fact of human development I do not think the Hamlet Doctrine will have an equal shelf life This book is haunted by two significant ghosts Like all books, it is ghosted by the book it could have been in this case, if the authors had had the courage to turn the play on their theory However, as in so many recent acts of literary criticism , the text being considered , Hamlet is a launch pad for a performance that soon loses sight of the words on the page A much interesting book would have used the play to challenge the theory The other ghost is that of Jacques Lacan, and ironically, given all the Oedipal waffle the authors go in for, they seem to have no desire to overthrow, supplant or even challenge their father figure On the other hand, and to be fair, the authors are well informed and eloquent in a Lacanian way Their use of the modesty topos, which reaches a climax in the final pages of the book, is almost comic given their habit of swatting and evaluating other critics Along the way they discuss some interesting readings of the play The first section of the book offers works But after that the pyrotechnics are very enjoyable, if you are prepared to switch your brain off and play the gawping child If you re expecting to learn something new about Hamlet the play by William Shakespeare you may be disappointed The idea that the bodies strewn over the stage at the end is farcical is unusual but not convincing for any performance I ve ever seen The dangers of psychoanalyzing literary characters were evident and noted when Freud first started the practice Hamlet is not a human being Hamlet is an accumulation of words on the page, or put into the mouth of an actor He exists only in what he does and says within the storyworld that is his context He does not have an unconscious Even if you want to pretend he is a real person and does, you can t access it through the usual channels of analysis The authors are aware of this they devote part of a chapter to the problem of bad psychoanalytical readings But having promised to Hamletize psychoanalysis, they forge ahead, doing exactly what they said they weren t going to do Theory acts as a filter But what is blinds the observer to is as interesting as what it allows him or her to see Hamlet has an opportunity to kill Claudius, while his Uncle is praying Hamlet talks himself out of the murder because he thinks Claudius will go to heaven if he is murdered at his prayers The theology of the play is famously murky He then imagines killing him during some sinful act that will ensure his swift departure for hell Hamlet runs through a list of sinful activities, which the authors quote on page 170 It s an open ended list Five are named and then or about some act that has no relish of salvation in t But the authors, locked into the prism of psychoanalytical theory, and one might note this sounds dangerously close to the prison of psychoanalytical theory , seize on one, the third one Hamlet mentions Barging in on the primal scene, the incestuous pleasure of Claudius bed, and sticking it to him, gives Hamlet the impetus not to act p.170 All the other sins that are mentioned are simply forgotten But it s in places like this where the play might be used to question the theory as an adequate way of accounting for the play It never happens The play is selectively conscripted as evidence for the theory This is evident in small aspects of the book It explains the authors habit of making strange statements When Ophelia dies, she returns to incestuous sheets, reunited with her father, both slain by her capricious lover p152 The incest reference here is gratuitous There is nothing in the play to suggest Ophelia and her father have an incestuous relationship A extreme example of this lack of verbal precision is evident when the authors discuss Hamlet s Interview with Gertrude Hamlet has warned himself to speak daggers to her but use none which the authors quote In the story world of the play his madness is known Gertrude, frightened, says or cries out, what wilt that sic do Thou wilt not murder me Help Ho in every version of the play in performance that I have seen Gerturde s fear is justified But according to Critchley and Webster Taking matters too far, we think the lady doth protest too much Gertrude s own pornographic, sadomasochistic fantasy breaks into the scene p.170 Admittedly the grammar makes it unclear who is taking matters too far Perhaps the authors are acknowledging what they are doing There s a revealing moment in the book on page 136 As a certain controversial French philosopher once put it, between the two of us, we know that one of us will die first, one of the us two will see himself no longer seeing the other The controversial French philosopher is identified in the footnotes as Derrida It s a strange moment of coyness, since Carl Schmitt to put it bluntly is controversial Lacan s ghost dominates this strange version of Hamlet , but at no point do the authors seem to acknowledge that he too, is to put it bluntly controversial Apparently the master does no wrong There s an oddly irrelevant one sided defense of his falling out with various governing bodies of Psychoanalysis His children not only don t want to over throw him, they want to mirror him as much as possible And that includes the worst features of his style This uncritical attitude is evident throughout the book, nowhere so when they write Lacan declares that you only act when you do not know that you ve killed your father and are sleeping with your mother When you do know, the consequences of that knowledge is morbid inhibition p132.Seriously As a reading of Oedipus Rex this might work As a reading of Hamlet it makes little sense But Lacan declares and as a general truth it s characteristically silly and surely deserves to be challenged People who commit incest often know they are committing incest You only act when you do not know is wrong is so many cases This movement from the specific to the unqualified aphorism masquerading as profound truth is one of Lacan s less likeable aspects as a thinker Whatever the value of unsubstantiated statements in the field of psychoanalysis whatever the pleasure of throwing the words up and seeing where they fall, if you re claiming to be reading a text, when the final phrase is delivered, surely it has to still have some relevance to the text As a book over shadowed by Lacan certain vices are inevitable The word desire both as verb and noun, will be used so arbitrarily it will become meaningless Statements will be made, as declarations of universally applicable truth which if qualified would be banal, but which stated didactically, usually using the first person plural to conscript the reader, will not stand scrutiny The authors discuss the language of flowers, which given Ophelia s famous scene is something which has been discussed at great length over the years.But apparently flowers remind George Bataille of genitals All flowers A summary of this leads our authors to a characteristic aphorism We give flowers not because we love but because we want to f ck p149 dash is mine If the authors are describing their own practice, fair enough, but they should identify themselves as the subject of the sentence and then explain what that s got to do with the play Otherwise, that we is invidious Don t make sweeping generalizations generations of students have been warned, because if nothing else they invite disagreement and stop you from making fine distinctions We give flowers not because we love but because we want to f ck p149 Seriously At Funerals At Christenings When we visit friends And what has this got to do with Ophelia Are they trying to say that s why she gives flowers to Gertrude This declarative aphorism, epigrammatic in its certainty, sounding like something handed down like law from the patriarchal heights of a mountain, is a characteristic of bad theory and bad writing The book is littered with such phrases Death desires us, and to desire is to face up to death p152 Death is a state and cannot experience desire Nor does the defense that this is a metaphor excuse the silliness If the statement were qualified, sometimes it can seem as though death desires us , no one would quibble But even then to desire is to face up to death All forms of desire lead us to confront death, every time, in a meaningful way What could to desire mean here that would validate that sentence And how many ways could the verb be used which would trivialize it But in the Lacanian Derridean style one declares, regardless of how silly the declaration The danger of this kind of writing is that it is seductive It sounds profound But it works only as long as the reader doesn t stop and consider the declarations Or the series of unfounded assumptions the analysis is based upon Oedipus the character did not want to kill his father and have sex with his mother He didn t castrate himself when he found out he put his eyes out Blinding as metaphor for castration Freud makes this link in The Uncanny , in one of his dafter moments A fear of having your eyes put out is not a fear of castration it s a human, non gender specific fear of having your eyes put out In King Lear Gloucester is not castrated, he is blinded in one of the unbearable scenes in Shakespeare Freud was haunted all his professional life by his inability to provide any kind of empirical evidence to support his theories All he had to offer was hypothesis and case history For anyone analyzing a literary work, the evidence is there The analysis and the hypothesis have to be tested against the words Don t sweat the small stuff and it s all small stuff is a nice slogan for a self help book but in criticism the small stuff is essential The ability to make clear distinctions and the precise use of words, are markers not of a lack of intelligence, but a desire to be accurate If the small stuff gets left out or dismissed as unimportant, then the end result is untethered from the text it purports to be discussing or analyzing and no matter how enjoyable or dazzling, it fails as analysis Is there any evidence in the play to suggest Hamlet wanted to kill his father, or replace him in his mother s bed Surely an analysis of Hamlet the play that dealt with what is in the play, and what is consistent with the internal logic of the story world, could be turned on the theory, and the limitations of the theory explored To reduce a play like Hamlet , with all its inconsistencies did Ophelia kill herself and unanswered questions, to a single doctrine isreductive.


  4. says:

    A lot of long words.Circular logic.I appreciated it when the authors actually came out and ended a chapter by stating their opinion They only did it half the time As all interpretations, this one had a bias, mainly toward Freud, Joyce, Schmitt and Lacan Which is to say, mainly toward Freud.Overall, this analysis seemed to be working towards a logical conclusion during the first half, but mainly derailed near the end However, their interpretation being right or not had nothing to do with how good the book was There were several very true and meaningful passages I still don t think it s worth it to invest your time trying to make sense of it all I could just give you the page numbers Yeah, a lot of long words Often they got in the way of the delivery, where the authors used wordy synonyms and you could tell they are trying to come across dramatic or ironic.I suggest you not read it, but perhaps talk to one who has.


  5. says:

    It was a bit much They often seemed to be trying too hard Look at us We re super smart, have read Kant and Hegel, and can use large words in talking about them Huge chunks of it have nearly nothing to do with Hamlet the play, but only tangentially touch on themes the work deals with Maybe I m too dumb, but much of this book was gibberish to me I know the play well, and I m fairly well read otherwise however I found myself throughout this book wondering what the hell was going on.


  6. says:

    Some interesting juxtapositions of others readings of Hamlet here But the authors own include too many errors and misprisions They cheerfully admit to writing as amateurs but might have gotten someone else who knows the play well to proofread.


  7. says:

    I ve got a big place in my heart and college degree for Shakespeare, so this insight into the psychology of Hamlet was than I was probably going to get out of any dull psych class.


  8. says:

    This is a very difficult book to read There were parts of it that resonated, where I felt that I was gaining unexpected insights into a very familiar play There was also such a vast amount of philosophical and psychoanalytic references in this book that it was extremely difficult to stay with This may say about the reader than about the authors, who are obviously exceptionally knowledgeable.


  9. says:

    This is some heady reading that will be used as a ready reference for deeper insight by many for years to come.The Introduction is very informative in that it provides some necessary groundwork Gorgastic Theater is an interesting concept to bring up in Hamlet, seeing that it is a play and at one point a play inside a play , but the Gorgastic idea that deception theater is for politics truthful than the truth and therefore relevant If Nothing Must takes you through a final tour of the nihilistic zeros of the play One gets the sense that Shakespeare understands soul crushing bureaucracies and how they level a man almost too well.Part I takes the reader through opposing views by Schmitt, Hagel, Benjamin, focusing on historical insight that may have influenced the plot The recent events in England regarding the ascendency of King James I, son of Mary, Queen of Scots, and the murder of Henry Stuart, her then husband, and a hasty marriage to James Hepburn Schmitt makes the most of that argument by superimposing Hamlet as Germany in some metaphysical way Benjamin treats it as a Christian Tragedy using absolution the current Catholic political machines as the motives Hagel then goes for the Greek Tragedy angle, using images of Aristophanes and yearning for a happy ending All motives and critiques can be weighed with the authors own suggestions and each has value In light of the political climate existent in England at the time it s a miracle that Shakespeare got away with what he did.Part II is a trip into the bottomless pit of Psychoanalysis Sex, love, psychosis, Oedipus, phallus, and the kitchen sink By the time you finish reading about Ophelia you may get the idea that her drowning was symbolic of the submersion or repression of an entire cast of ills all whipped up for the perfect storm of O We are shown the image of the mirror as Hamlet, for our cathartic indulgence, reviles his image He mingles Laertes into his self dialogue along the way down For the audience, we can see ourselves as Hamlet in the mirror looking at Laertes as his alter ego We can see ourselves as Hamlet and associate our values, fears, and faults with the Prince of Denmark.Part II dives full on into many of the philosophers who felt they had a dog in the fight, starting with brace yourself Nietzsche Whenever you want to bring something deep and dark to a conversation, inviting a German comes to mind Nietzsche is on everyone s guest list there By Germanizing Hamlet on Nietzsche s terms we can see each one through the others eyes, or at least that s what seems to be going on Nietzsche does understand tragedy, and Hamlet is a great place to start The concept of The Womb of Tragedy is an interesting play in Dionysian thought and pulls in Beethoven just in case the point was missed Back to Ophelia and sexualized psychosis, it rounds off any philosophical avenue that does not end in psychoanalysis.The brief Conclusion generally wraps up what seems a synthesis, or two ideas, blending them back into the original plot of the play Fortenbras shows up at the last in Monty Python style to view the carnage We know so little of him that he must be the only good one in Denmark He is the real winner of this play, but the time is up and everyone needing avenging is room temperature Horatiao says something to pull it all tight and we re done.I really enjoyed the did ja know moments and the many angles available to view this one play from But in the end the theme brought home by Critchley and Webster is that this is a play about noting.Panopticon Great observation that changed my whole understanding of this play Spies everywhere People appearing out of nowhere for no apparent reason that only having a personal network of spies can answer Did Hamlet ever hear of the NSA or is history circular.A lot can be said for nothing Especially when we are looking into our own Hamlets.


  10. says:

    I m generally skeptical of texts that deal primarily with the analysis of other texts, but I was than pleasantly surprised with this volume Husband Wife, Psychologist Philosopher team Crithcley and Webster have compiled an excellent collection of ideas from great thinkers such as Feud, Hegel, and Nietzsche, and throughout the book prolifically and often entertainingly offered their own understanding of the works, all in connection with Hamlet While this book would likely be a bit of a slough for the typical reader especially one not terribly well versed in reading either psychological or philosophical texts , I found that it didn t hold me back from enjoying the revelations therein I would consider this text a must read for any company attempting a production of Hamlet, if for no other reason than to aid in creating an interpretation of a story that has been played probably often than any other in the English language except for, you know, every other major Shakespeare play I highly recommend this to anyone who has even the slightest interest in Hamlet and or Human Nature.Overall Rating Thought Provoking and hunger inducing I literally read the whole thing in one sitting.


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