1st Edition

New Psychoanalytic Readings of Shakespeare Cool Reason and Seething Brains

Edited By James Newlin, James W. Stone Copyright 2024

    It has been over two decades since the publication of the last major edited collection focused on psychoanalysis and early modern culture. In Shakespeare studies, the New Historicism and cognitive psychology have hindered a dynamic conversation engaging depth-oriented models of the mind from taking place. The essays in New Psychoanalytic Readings of Shakespeare: Cool Reason and Seething Brains seek to redress this situation, by engaging a broad spectrum of psychoanalytic theory and criticism, from Freud to the present, to read individual plays closely. These essays show how psychoanalytic theory helps us to rethink the plays’ history of performance; their treatment of gender, sexuality, and race; their view of history and trauma; and the ways in which they anticipate contemporary psychodynamic treatment. Far from simply calling for a conventional "return to Freud," the essays collected here initiate an exciting conversation between Shakespeare studies and psychoanalysis in the hopes of radically transforming both disciplines. It is time to listen, once again, to seething brains.

    James Newlin and James W. Stone: Introduction

    Cryptonomy, Necrology, Ghosts

    1. Adam Rzepka – "That dim monument": The fantasy of the crypt in Romeo and Juliet and Antigone
    2. Kasey Evans – The Time Is Out of Joint: Hamlet Speaks to the Dead
    3. Andrew Barnaby – "Mine Own, and Not Mine Own": Hamlet, Twelfth Night, and Early-Modern Psychotheology
    4. Festivity and Sacrifice

    5. Russell J. Bodi – Hamlet’s Nobler Choice: The Interior Game
    6. James W. Stone – "Is this a holiday?": Festivity and Sacrifice in Julius Caesar
    7. History and Trauma

    8. Devori Kimbro – "All Badged with Blood": Equivocation as Trauma in Macbeth
    9. Gabriel A. Rieger – "Crawling between earth and heaven": Sadomasochism and Subjectivity in Hamlet
    10. Zackariah Long – The Primal Scene in Pericles: Trauma, Typology, and Mythology
    11. Gender Trouble

    12. W. Reginald Rampone, Jr. – Phallic Fantasies in The Taming of the Shrew
    13. Drew Daniel – The Gilded Puddle: Scatology, Race and Masochism in Antony and Cleopatra
    14. James Newlin – Staging the Woman in The Tempest and Ex Machina
    15. Shakespeare and the Matter of Clinical Practice

    16. Nicholas Bellinson – ‘method in’t’: Hamlet as analysand
    17. Richard M. Waugaman – What Shakespeare Teaches Us about Psychological Complexity
    18. Vera J. Camden – An Afterword on Apocalypse and Afterwardness


    James Newlin is a lecturer at Case Western Reserve University in the Department of English. He is the author of Uncanny Fidelity: Recognizing Shakespeare in Twenty-First-Century Film and Television (University of Alabama Press, 2024). He has also published in The Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism, Shakespeare Bulletin, SubStance, and elsewhere.

    James W. Stone is a lecturer on Shakespeare at American University, at the Osher Institute at Johns Hopkins, and at OLLI at American University. He taught at the American University in Cairo and at the National University of Singapore. He is the author of Crossing Gender in Shakespeare: Feminist Psychoanalysis and the Difference Within (Routledge, 2010) and articles on Shakespeare, Milton, the Renaissance Ovid, film theory, and contemporary Egyptian art. His current project is co-editing a collection of essays by British scholars on Shakespeare and psychoanalysis.