The Freudian Robot

Author: Lydia H. Liu
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226486840
Release Date: 2011-05-23
Genre: Literary Criticism

The identity and role of writing has evolved in the age of digital media. But how did writing itself make digital media possible in the first place? Lydia H. Liu offers here the first rigorous study of the political history of digital writing and its fateful entanglement with the Freudian unconscious. Liu’s innovative analysis brings the work of theorists and writers back into conversation with one another to document significant meetings of minds and disciplines. She shows how the earlier avant-garde literary experiments with alphabetical writing and the word-association games of psychoanalysis contributed to the mathematical making of digital media. Such intellectual convergence, she argues, completed the transformation of alphabetical writing into the postphonetic, ideographic system of digital media, which not only altered the threshold of sense and nonsense in communication processes but also compelled a new understanding of human-machine interplay at the level of the unconscious. Ranging across information theory, cybernetics, modernism, literary theory, neurotic machines, and psychoanalysis, The Freudian Robot rewrites the history of digital media and the literary theory of the twentieth century.

The Freudian Robot

Author: Lydia H. Liu
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226486833
Release Date: 2010
Genre: Computers

The identity and role of writing has evolved in the age of digital media. But how did writing itself make digital media possible in the first place? Lydia H. Liu offers here the first rigorous study of the political history of digital writing and its fateful entanglement with the Freudian unconscious. Liu’s innovative analysis brings the work of theorists and writers back into conversation with one another to document significant meetings of minds and disciplines. She shows how the earlier avant-garde literary experiments with alphabetical writing and the word-association games of psychoanalysis contributed to the mathematical making of digital media. Such intellectual convergence, she argues, completed the transformation of alphabetical writing into the postphonetic, ideographic system of digital media, which not only altered the threshold of sense and nonsense in communication processes but also compelled a new understanding of human-machine interplay at the level of the unconscious. Ranging across information theory, cybernetics, modernism, literary theory, neurotic machines, and psychoanalysis, The Freudian Robot rewrites the history of digital media and the literary theory of the twentieth century.

The Freudian Robot

Author: Lydia H. Liu
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226486826
Release Date: 2011-02-28
Genre: Literary Criticism

The identity and role of writing has evolved in the age of digital media. But how did writing itself make digital media possible in the first place? Lydia H. Liu offers here the first rigorous study of the political history of digital writing and its fateful entanglement with the Freudian unconscious. Liu’s innovative analysis brings the work of theorists and writers back into conversation with one another to document significant meetings of minds and disciplines. She shows how the earlier avant-garde literary experiments with alphabetical writing and the word-association games of psychoanalysis contributed to the mathematical making of digital media. Such intellectual convergence, she argues, completed the transformation of alphabetical writing into the postphonetic, ideographic system of digital media, which not only altered the threshold of sense and nonsense in communication processes but also compelled a new understanding of human-machine interplay at the level of the unconscious. Ranging across information theory, cybernetics, modernism, literary theory, neurotic machines, and psychoanalysis, The Freudian Robot rewrites the history of digital media and the literary theory of the twentieth century.

The Cybernetic Brain

Author: Andrew Pickering
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226667928
Release Date: 2010-04-15
Genre: Science

Cybernetics is often thought of as a grim military or industrial science of control. But as Andrew Pickering reveals in this beguiling book, a much more lively and experimental strain of cybernetics can be traced from the 1940s to the present. The Cybernetic Brain explores a largely forgotten group of British thinkers, including Grey Walter, Ross Ashby, Gregory Bateson, R. D. Laing, Stafford Beer, and Gordon Pask, and their singular work in a dazzling array of fields. Psychiatry, engineering, management, politics, music, architecture, education, tantric yoga, the Beats, and the sixties counterculture all come into play as Pickering follows the history of cybernetics’ impact on the world, from contemporary robotics and complexity theory to the Chilean economy under Salvador Allende. What underpins this fascinating history, Pickering contends, is a shared but unconventional vision of the world as ultimately unknowable, a place where genuine novelty is always emerging. And thus, Pickering avers, the history of cybernetics provides us with an imaginative model of open-ended experimentation in stark opposition to the modern urge to achieve domination over nature and each other.

The Interpretation of Murder

Author: Jed Rubenfeld
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 0312427050
Release Date: 2007-05-15
Genre: Fiction

In 1909, as a sadistic killer stalks Manhattan's wealthiest heiresses, Sigmund Freud is called in by American analyst Dr. Stratham Younger to assist him in interviewing Nora Acton, a hysterical survivor of the killer who can recall nothing about the attack. A first novel. Reader's Guide included. Reprint. 100,000 first printing.

Secrets Of The Soul

Author: Eli Zaretsky
Publisher: Vintage Books
ISBN: 9781400079230
Release Date: 2005
Genre: Psychology

Traces the origins and development of psychoanalysis, from the Enlightenment through the twentieth century from a social, economic, and cultural perspective, assessing its influence on such concepts as that of a personal life distinct from the family, the American emphasis on the individual, anxiety, and the role of women, homosexuals, and ethnic minorities. Reprint. 12,500 first printing.

From Counterculture to Cyberculture

Author: Fred Turner
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226817439
Release Date: 2010-10-15
Genre: Social Science

In the early 1960s, computers haunted the American popular imagination. Bleak tools of the cold war, they embodied the rigid organization and mechanical conformity that made the military-industrial complex possible. But by the 1990s—and the dawn of the Internet—computers started to represent a very different kind of world: a collaborative and digital utopia modeled on the communal ideals of the hippies who so vehemently rebelled against the cold war establishment in the first place. From Counterculture to Cyberculture is the first book to explore this extraordinary and ironic transformation. Fred Turner here traces the previously untold story of a highly influential group of San Francisco Bay–area entrepreneurs: Stewart Brand and the Whole Earth network. Between 1968 and 1998, via such familiar venues as the National Book Award–winning Whole Earth Catalog, the computer conferencing system known as WELL, and, ultimately, the launch of the wildly successful Wired magazine, Brand and his colleagues brokered a long-running collaboration between San Francisco flower power and the emerging technological hub of Silicon Valley. Thanks to their vision, counterculturalists and technologists alike joined together to reimagine computers as tools for personal liberation, the building of virtual and decidedly alternative communities, and the exploration of bold new social frontiers. Shedding new light on how our networked culture came to be, this fascinating book reminds us that the distance between the Grateful Dead and Google, between Ken Kesey and the computer itself, is not as great as we might think.

The Uncanny

Author: Sigmund Freud
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 9780141930503
Release Date: 2003-07-31
Genre: Literary Collections

An extraordinary collection of thematically linked essays, including THE UNCANNY, SCREEN MEMORIES and FAMILY ROMANCES. Leonardo da Vinci fascinated Freud primarily because he was keen to know why his personality was so incomprehensible to his contemporaries. In this probing biographical essay he deconstructs both da Vinci's character and the nature of his genius. As ever, many of his exploratory avenues lead to the subject's sexuality - why did da Vinci depict the naked human body the way hedid? What of his tendency to surround himself with handsome young boys that he took on as his pupils? Intriguing, thought-provoking and often contentious, this volume contains some of Freud's best writing.

Psychoanalysis

Author: Janet Malcolm
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9780307797834
Release Date: 2011-06-08
Genre: Psychology

From the author of In the Freud Archives and The Journalist and the Murderer comes an intensive look at the practice of psychoanalysis through interviews with “Aaron Green,” a Freudian analyst in New York City. Malcolm is accessible and lucid in describing the history of psychoanalysis and its development in the United States. It provides rare insight into the contradictory world of psychoanalytic training and treatment and a foundation for our understanding of psychiatry and mental health. "Janet Malcom has managed somehow to peer into the reticent, reclusive world of psychoanalysis and to report to us, with remarkable fidelity, what she has seen. When I began reading I thought condescendingly, 'She will get the facts right, and everything else wrong.' She does get the facts right, but far more pressive, she has been able to capture and convey the claustral atmosphere of the profession. Her book is journalism become art." —Joseph Andelson, The New York Times Book Review

Tokens of Exchange

Author: Lydia H. Liu
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822381129
Release Date: 1999-12-29
Genre: Political Science

The problem of translation has become increasingly central to critical reflections on modernity and its universalizing processes. Approaching translation as a symbolic and material exchange among peoples and civilizations—and not as a purely linguistic or literary matter, the essays in Tokens of Exchange focus on China and its interactions with the West to historicize an economy of translation. Rejecting the familiar regional approach to non-Western societies, contributors contend that “national histories” and “world history” must be read with absolute attention to the types of epistemological translatability that have been constructed among the various languages and cultures in modern times. By studying the production and circulation of meaning as value in areas including history, religion, language, law, visual art, music, and pedagogy, essays consider exchanges between Jesuit and Protestant missionaries and the Chinese between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries and focus on the interchanges occasioned by the spread of capitalism and imperialism. Concentrating on ideological reciprocity and nonreciprocity in science, medicine, and cultural pathologies, contributors also posit that such exchanges often lead to racialized and essentialized ideas about culture, sexuality, and nation. The collection turns to the role of language itself as a site of the universalization of knowledge in its contemplation of such processes as the invention of Basic English and the global teaching of the English language. By focusing on the moments wherein meaning-value is exchanged in the translation from one language to another, the essays highlight the circulation of the global in the local as they address the role played by historical translation in the universalizing processes of modernity and globalization. The collection will engage students and scholars of global cultural processes, Chinese studies, world history, literary studies, history of science, and anthropology, as well as cultural and postcolonial studies. Contributors. Jianhua Chen, Nancy Chen, Alexis Dudden Eastwood, Roger Hart, Larissa Heinrich, James Hevia, Andrew F. Jones, Wan Shun Eva Lam, Lydia H. Liu, Deborah T. L. Sang, Haun Saussy, Q. S. Tong, Qiong Zhang

The Birth of Chinese Feminism

Author: Lydia He Liu
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 9780231162913
Release Date: 2013
Genre: Social Science

"He-Yin Zhen (1886-1920) was a female theorist who played a central role in the birth of Chinese feminism. Editor of a prominent feminist-anarchist journal in the early twentieth century and exponent of a particularly incisive analysis of China and the world. Unlike her contemporaries, He-Yin Zhen was concerned less with China's fate as a nation and more with the relationship among patriarchy, imperialism, capitalism, and gender subjugation as global and transhistorical problems. Her bold writings were considered radical and dangerous in her lifetime and gradually have been erased from the historical record. This volume, the first translation and study of He-Yin's work in English or Chinese, is also a critical reconstruction of early twentieth-century Chinese feminist thought in a transnational context. The book repositions He-Yin Zhen as central to the development of feminism in China, juxtaposing her writing with fresh translations of works by two of her better-known male interlocutors. The editors begin with a detailed portrait of He-Yin Zhen's life and an analysis of her thought in comparative terms. They then present annotated translations of six of her major essays, as well as two foundational tracts by her male contemporaries, Jin Tianhe (1873-1947) and Liang Qichao (1873-1929), to which He-Yin's work responds and with which it engages. Jin Tianhe, a poet and educator, and Liang Qichao, a philosopher and journalist, understood feminism as a paternalistic cause that "enlightened" male intellectuals like themselves should defend. Zhen counters with an alternative conception of feminism that draws upon anarchism and other radical trends in thought. Ahead of her time within the context of both modernizing China and global feminism, He-Yin Zhen complicates traditional accounts of women and modern history, offering original perspectives on sex, gender, labor, and power that continue to be relevant to feminist theorists in China, Europe, and America."--Publisher's website.

Hysteria Beyond Freud

Author: Sander Lawrence Gilman
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520080645
Release Date: 1993-01-01
Genre: History

"Encyclopedically learned, up-to-date, authoritative, and altogether the best introduction to the subject that exists in any language."--Thomas Laqueur, author of Making Sex

Adventures in the Orgasmatron

Author: Christopher Turner
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 9781429967488
Release Date: 2011-06-07
Genre: Psychology

One of The Economist's 2011 Books of the Year A Boston Globe Best Nonfiction Book of 2011 Well before the 1960s, a sexual revolution was under way in America, led by expatriated European thinkers who saw a vast country ripe for liberation. In Adventures in the Orgasmatron, Christopher Turner tells the revolution's story—an illuminating, thrilling, often bizarre story of sex and science, ecstasy and repression. Central to the narrative is the orgone box—a tall, slender construction of wood, metal, and steel wool. A person who sat in the box, it was thought, could elevate his or her "orgastic potential." The box was the invention of Wilhelm Reich, an outrider psychoanalyst who faced a federal ban on the orgone box, an FBI investigation, a fraught encounter with Einstein, and bouts of paranoia. In Turner's vivid account, Reich's efforts anticipated those of Alfred Kinsey, Herbert Marcuse, and other prominent thinkers—efforts that brought about a transformation of Western views of sexuality in ways even the thinkers themselves could not have imagined.

My Mother Was a Computer

Author: N. Katherine Hayles
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226321493
Release Date: 2010-03-15
Genre: Literary Criticism

We live in a world, according to N. Katherine Hayles, where new languages are constantly emerging, proliferating, and fading into obsolescence. These are languages of our own making: the programming languages written in code for the intelligent machines we call computers. Hayles's latest exploration provides an exciting new way of understanding the relations between code and language and considers how their interactions have affected creative, technological, and artistic practices. My Mother Was a Computer explores how the impact of code on everyday life has become comparable to that of speech and writing: language and code have grown more entangled, the lines that once separated humans from machines, analog from digital, and old technologies from new ones have become blurred. My Mother Was a Computer gives us the tools necessary to make sense of these complex relationships. Hayles argues that we live in an age of intermediation that challenges our ideas about language, subjectivity, literary objects, and textuality. This process of intermediation takes place where digital media interact with cultural practices associated with older media, and here Hayles sharply portrays such interactions: how code differs from speech; how electronic text differs from print; the effects of digital media on the idea of the self; the effects of digitality on printed books; our conceptions of computers as living beings; the possibility that human consciousness itself might be computational; and the subjective cosmology wherein humans see the universe through the lens of their own digital age. We are the children of computers in more than one sense, and no critic has done more than N. Katherine Hayles to explain how these technologies define us and our culture. Heady and provocative, My Mother Was a Computer will be judged as her best work yet.

Civilization and Its Discontents

Author: Sigmund Freud
Publisher: GENERAL PRESS
ISBN: 9789387669529
Release Date: 2018-04-17
Genre: History

Civilization and Its Discontents is one of the last of Freud's books, written in the decade before his death and first published in German in 1929. It is considered his most brilliant work. In it he states his views on the broad question of man's place in the world. It seeks to answer several questions fundamental to human society and its organization: What influences led to the creation of civilization? Why and how did it come to be? What determines civilization’s trajectory? Freud’s theories on the effect of the knowledge of death on human existence and the birth of art are central to his work. Many of humankind's primitive instincts (for example, the desire to kill and the insatiable craving for sexual gratification) are clearly harmful to the well-being of a human community. As a result, civilization creates laws that prohibit killing, rape, and adultery, and it implements severe punishments if such commandments are broken. This process, argues Freud, is an inherent quality of civilization that instills perpetual feelings of discontent in its citizens. Freud's theme is that what works for civilization doesn't necessarily work for man. Man, by nature aggressive and egotistical, seeks self-satisfaction.