Law and Enjoyment: Power, Pleasure and Psychoanalysis
Taylor and Francis, Hoboken,
2015, 177 pp.
advocates, and develops, a critical account of the relationship between law and
the largely neglected issue of ‘enjoyment’. Taking popular culture seriously –
as a lived and meaningful basis for a wider understanding of law, beyond the
strictures of legal institutions and professional practices – it takes up a
range of case studies from film and literature in order to consider how law is
iterated through enjoyment, and how enjoyment embodies law. Drawing on
psychoanalytic theory, this book addresses issues such as the forced choice to
enjoy the law, the biopolitics of tyranny, the enjoyment of law’s contingency,
the trauma of the law’s symbolic codification of pleasure, and the futuristic
vision of law’s transgression. In so doing, it forges an important case for
acknowledging and analyzing the complex relationship between power and pleasure
in law – one that will be of considerable interest to legal theorists, as well
as those with interests in the intersection of psychoanalytic and cultural theory.
Daniel Houriganis a Lecturer in English Literature at
the University of Southern Queensland, Australia.