Introduction to Theory of Literature

Yale,, Spring 2009 , Prof. Paul H. Fry

Updated On 02 Feb, 19


Introduction - Ways In and Out of the Hermeneutic Circle - Configurative Reading - The Idea of the Autonomous Artwork - The New Criticism and Other Western Formalisms - Russian Formalism - Semiotics and Structuralism - Linguistics and Literature - Deconstruction - Freud and Fiction - Jacques Lacan in Theory - Influence - The Postmodern Psyche - The Social Permeability of Reader and Text - The Frankfurt School of Critical Theory - The Political Unconscious - The New Historicism - The Classical Feminist Tradition - African-American Criticism - Post-Colonial Criticism - Queer Theory and Gender Performativity - The Institutional Construction of Literary Study - The End of Theory?; Neo-Pragmatism - Reflections; Who Doesn't Hate Theory Now?


Lecture 12: Freud and Fiction

4.1 ( 11 )

Lecture Details

Introduction to Theory of Literature (ENGL 300)

In this lecture, Professor Paul Fry turns his attention to the relationship between authorship and the psyche. Freuds meditations on the fundamental drives governing human behavior are read through the lens of literary critic Peter Brooks. The origins of Freuds work on the "pleasure principle" and his subsequent revision of it are charted, and the immediate and constant influence of Freudian thought on literary production is asserted. Brooks contributions to literary theory are explored particularly the coupling of multiple Freudian principles, including the pleasure principle and the death wish, and their application to narrative structures. At the lectures conclusion, the professor returns to the childrens story, Tony the Tow Truck, to suggest the universality of Brooks argument.

0000 - Chapter 1. Brooks Debt to Jakobson and de Man
0610 - Chapter 2. Brooks Debt to Freud
1314 - Chapter 3. Brooks Departure from Freud
2204 - Chapter 4. Freuds Beyond the Pleasure Principle
2701 - Chapter 5. "The Aim of All Life is Death"
3408 - Chapter 6. Merging the Pleasure Principle with the Death Wish
4142 - Chapter 7. Tony the Tow Truck Revisited

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website httpopen.yale.educourses

This course was recorded in Spring 2009.



0 Ratings
comment person image


Excellent course helped me understand topic that i couldn't while attendinfg my college.

comment person image


Great course. Thank you very much.