Civilisation on the couch: Theorising multi-levelled psychoanalytical arts practice

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This paper combines two psychological approaches to art to theorise a both subjective and cultural methodology for practice-based arts research. The first psychoanalytical approach will follow the work of Deleuze and Guattari’s Schizoanalysis, considering the role of the artist in order to assess their work in relation to society from an engaged position. The second approach will be Žižek’s Lacanian cultural theory, focusing on exposing the drives of the subjective individual in relation to their social condition. The combination of these theories allows new approaches for cultural analysis of art to emerge, taking into account the subjectivity necessary for using art to unveil what cannot be expressed in theory alone. This can be used to formulate a two-stage practice-based methodology for research, from both sides of the ‘couch’, in critically analysing the functions of consciousness involved at both the subjective and cultural levels of contemporary art.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)243-249
Number of pages7
JournalArts and Humanities in Higher Education
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 24 Dec 2013


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