A Psychoanalytic Study of Lawrence Durrell’s The Alexandria Quartet: Exile and Return focuses on the dialogue created by literature and psychoanalysis in an individual’s quest to explore existential issues, such as a sense of belonging to a homeland and a recurring sense of the Uncanny (das unheimliche). Rony Alfandary explores Durrell’s attempt to recreate a sense of belonging to a homeland, which perhaps never existed but can be retraced and reinvented through writing.
This book studies some issues present in Durrell’s work:
- the connection between biographical and fictional elements in the study of literature
- the influence of early Freudian theoretical themes upon the writer
- later influences including post-modern and hermeneutic theories
The life and work of Lawrence Durrell can serve as a prototype of a man’s quest for meaning, in a world caught in turmoil in the period between and during WW2. The author’s psychoanalytic exploration of the work and its relevance to human experience today, shows how the themes Durrell dealt with remain relevant. Alfandary highlights the ways in which his usage of several author narrative styles exemplifies the divergent and often contradictory nature of "Truth", emerging rather as multi-layered, multi-voiced and often torn sense of human subjectivity.
A Psychoanalytic Study of Lawrence Durrell’s The Alexandria Quartet: Exile and Return demonstrates Durrell’s strong influence by psychoanalytic thought and will appeal to both psychoanalytic and literary scholars.
Table of Contents
Foreword by Richard Pine; Lawrence Durrell-Milestones; Introduction – The Alexandria Quartet in contemporary context; Chapter One: Psychoanalysis, Writing and Exile; Chapter Two: Whose Voice is it anyway? Narratives and Structure; Chapter Three: Dreams and Dreaming; Chapter Four: The Topographic Return to the Mother-City; Chapter Five: The Secret Wound; Epilogue; Lawrence Durrell-Bibliography
Rony Alfandary, Ph.D., is a clinical social worker, writer and photographer. Rony is a lecturer at Bar-Ilan University in Israel and is in private practice as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist.