Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Edward Lear and the Play of Poetry$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

James Williams and Matthew Bevis

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198708568

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198708568.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 27 May 2020

Edward Lear’s Contribution to British Psychoanalysis

Edward Lear’s Contribution to British Psychoanalysis

Chapter:
(p.339) 16 Edward Lear’s Contribution to British Psychoanalysis
Source:
Edward Lear and the Play of Poetry
Author(s):

Adam Phiilips

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198708568.003.0017

This chapter examines how Learical play was central to the twentieth-century British tradition of psychoanalysis, in particular to the work of D. W. Winnicott. What the ‘absurd’ or the ‘surreal’ were to continental Europe, it argues, ‘nonsense’ was to the British tradition–and it was the absence of self-conscious manifestoes and programmatic self-definitions which lent ‘nonsense’ its particular value and force as an analytic tool. The investment of Lear’s poetic play in the play of childhood was vital for a tradition which placed the child’s experience at the centre of its method. In his essay ‘Playing, a Theoretical Statement’, Winnicott redescribed Freud’s ‘golden rule’ of free-association in terms of play, suggesting that rather than seeking to understand (after Freud) what verbal play is trying to hold at bay, psychoanalysts ought rather to attend to the play itself, even to the point of understanding analysis as a form of nonsensical play.

Keywords:   Edward Lear, D. W. Winnicott, psychoanalysis, nonsense, play

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .