By Jeffrey Berman
This ebook is a poignant learn of the journals that scholars have written in Jeffrey Berman's university classification on literature and psychoanalysis over the process fifteen years. Introspective and ungraded, the diaries provide a special glimpse into the non-public international of scholars' lives.
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Extra resources for Diaries to an English professor: pain and growth in the classroom
Thanks also to Craig Noll for his careful copyediting. An abridged version of Chapter 5, entitled "'The Grief That Does Not Speak': Suicide, Mourning, and Psychoanalytic Teaching," first appeared in Self-Analysis in Literary Study, edited by Daniel Rancour-Laferriere and published by New York University Press. To Maryanne Hannan, I owe a special thanks. Reading her Afterword, I Page x had the sense that she had captured unerringly not only my comments on student diaries and my teaching style but also aspects of my character.
I began teaching psychoanalytic literary criticism in 1976, three years after arriving at the university. Long interested in psychological approaches to literature, I was curious to see whether students could use a weekly "Freudian" diary to apply psychoanalytic theory to their own lives. 1 In outlining the course, I told my students that, just as we would use our class discussions to analyze fictional characters' dreams, fantasies, desires, and defenses, so would the students be encouraged to turn their attention inward and, with the help of insights acquired from readings and class discussions, examine their own lives.
1 We then turned to classic nineteenth- and twentieth-century short stories, including Nathaniel Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown," Edgar Allan Poe's "Fall of the House of Usher," Herman Melville's "Bartleby the Scrivener,'' F. Scott Fitzgerald's "Babylon Revisited," D. H. " We read two novellasFranz Kafka's Metamorphosis and Saul Bellow's Seize the Dayalong with two novels: Sylvia Plath's Bell Jar and J. D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye. The students also read my own book, The Talking Cure,2 to see how writers have portrayed psychoanalysis in novels and plays.
Diaries to an English professor: pain and growth in the classroom by Jeffrey Berman