Scansion in Psychoanalysis & Art

Scansion in Psychoanalysis and Art: the Cut in Creation (Routledge, 2020) is now available!

Scansion in Psychoanalysis and Art examines a strain of artists spanning more than a century, beginning at the dawn of photography and culminating in the discussion of contemporary artists, to illustrate various psychoanalytic concepts by examining artists working in a multitude of media.

Drawing on the theories of Sigmund Freud, who applied psychoanalytic methods to art and literature to decipher the meaning and intention of the creator, as well as Jacques Lacan’s dissemination of scansion as a powerful disruption of narrative, the book explores examples of the long and rich relationship between psychoanalysis and the fine arts. Whilst guiding readers through the different artists and their artforms – from painting and music to poetry, collage, photography, film, performance art, technology and body modification – Sinclair interrogates scansion as a generative process often inherent of the act of creation itself. 

This is an intriguing book for psychoanalysts, psychologists and creative arts therapists who wish to explore the generative potential of scansion and the relationship between psychoanalysis and the arts, as well as for artists and art historians interested in a psychoanalytic view of these processes.

Vanessa Sinclair, PsyD, is a psychoanalyst based in Stockholm. Dr Sinclair is the author of Switching Mirrors (2016), editor of Rendering Unconscious: Psychoanalytic Perspectives, Politics and Poetry (2019), and co-editor of On Psychoanalysis and Violence: Contemporary Lacanian Perspectives (2018) with Dr Manya Steinkoler.

Table of Contents




Part I – Sowing Seeds/Setting the Stage

Chapter 1: A Cut in Time: The Advent of Photography

Chapter 2: Reimagining the Frame: The Birth of Modern Art 

Part II – Unleashing the Unconscious

Chapter 3: The Art of Noise

Chapter 4: Psychoanalysis and Dada

Chapter 5: Collage, Photomontage and Assemblage

Chapter 6: Disrupting the Expected: Marcel Duchamp

Part III – Revolution of Mind

Chapter 7: Surrealism/Acéphale

Chapter 8: Double-bind: Cutting the Bonds of Gender

Chapter 9: The Cutting Edge: Avant-garde and Experimental Cinema

Chapter 10: The Cut-up Method of the Beats

Part IV – When Art Becomes Life (and Death)

Chapter 11: Acting Out: Pop, Street and Performance Art

Chapter 12: Cut from the Collective: Alternative Communities

Chapter 13: Body Modification, Polymorphous Perversity and Pandrogeny

Chapter 14: Technology, Morbidity, Death and the Unexpected


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s