For Adam Phillips - as for Freud and many of his followers - poetry and poets have always held an essential place, as both precursors and unofficial collaborators in the psychoanalytic project. But the same has never held true in reverse. What, Phillips wonders, at the start of this deeply engaging book, has psychoanalysis meant for writers? And what can writing do for psychoanalysis? Phillips explores these questions through an exhilarating series of encounters with - and vivid readings of - writers he has loved, from Byron and Barthes to Shakespeare and Sebald. And in the process he demonstrates, through his own unique style, how literature and psychoanalysis can speak to and of each other.
Publisher's description. Adam Phillips explores the relationship between psychoanalysis and writing in a thrillingly erudite sequence of essays. From Byron to Barthes and Shakespeare to Sebald, Phillips demonstrates how literature and psychoanalysis are closely interlinked, sharing many ideas, theories and narratives. Penguin
Adam Phillips is the author of numerous works of psychotherapy and literary criticism, including Winnicott, On Kissing, Tickling, and Being Bored, Going Sane, Side Effects, On Kindness, co-written with Barbara Taylor, On Balance, Missing Out, One Way and Another, Becoming Freud and Unforbidden Pleasures. Adam Phillips is a practising psychoanalyst and a visiting professor in the English department at the University of York. He writes regularly for the London Review of Books, the Observer and the New York Times, and he is General Editor of the Penguin Modern Classics Freud translations. He recently curated an exhibition, The Vulgar: Fashion Redefined, at the Barbican, London. His forthcoming book, In Writing, will be published by Hamish Hamilton in summer 2017.