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The Mother in the Age of Mechanical ReproductionPsychoanalysis, Photography, Deconstruction$
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Elissa Marder

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780823240555

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823240555.001.0001

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Mourning, Magic, and Telepathy

Mourning, Magic, and Telepathy

(p.37) TWO Mourning, Magic, and Telepathy
The Mother in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

Elissa Marder

Fordham University Press

This chapter examines how and why the question of failed or impossible mourning emerges in Jacques Derrida's writings, and suggests that his deconstructive challenge to psychoanalytic accounts of the work of mourning is critical to understanding the stakes of his thinking more generally. By looking at how Derrida both takes up and transforms the notion of the “crypt” from Nicolas Abraham and Maria Torok's psychoanalytic writings, it explores how, for Derrida, “magic” and “magical thinking” open up the psychic space of the subject “after deconstruction” to the alternative topographies and temporalities that are incarnated by literature, literary language, and the anasemic qualities associated with “magic words.” The chapter concludes with an analysis of the telepathic connection between Derrida's work on mourning and the crypt in “Fors” and Maria Torok's essay on telepathy in her “Afterword” to the English translation of The Wolfman's Magic Word.

Keywords:   Jacques Derrida, mourning, Fors, crypt, introjection, semi-mourning, foreign body

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