Desire

Desire

Flaubert, Proust, Fitzgerald, Miller, Lana Del Rey

Breakthroughs in Mimetic Theory

by Per Bjørnar Grande

Published by: Michigan State University Press

272 pages, 4.50 x 6.00 in

  • ISBN: 9781611863215
  • Published: July 2020

$19.95

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Desire can take many forms. Hegel related desire to acceptance, Nietzsche to power, and Freud to the erotic. In novels and plays by Gustave Flaubert, Marcel Proust, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Arthur Miller and music by Lana Del Rey, desire operates in a complex, slippery way that eludes philosophical and psychoanalytic attempts to pin it down. These and other great works of literature corroborate René Girard’s understanding of desire as taking shape “according to the other’s desire.” The mimetic approach frees desire from the preconceptions of both subject- and object-oriented psychologies and puts literary criticism in touch with the concrete substance of fictional narratives. Drawing on both modern masterpieces and iconic works of contemporary pop culture, Per Bjørnar Grande sketches a Girardian phenomenology of desire, one that sheds new light on the frustrating and repetitive nature of human relations in a world of vanishing taboos.