Duane Rousselle, PhD

Gender, Sexuality and Subjectivity: A Lacanian Perspective on Identity, Language and Queer Theory (2020). Routledge.

Series: Routledge Focus on Mental Health

Offering a concise yet comprehensive introduction to gender theory, this thought-provoking new book aims to make an intervention into the contemporary American paradigm of thinking gender and sexuality and offers a powerful challenge to the paradigm of social constructionism.

Within each gender paradigm there are unacknowledged truths. The controversial claim of this book is that queer theory and intersectionality – and, more broadly, the social constructionist paradigm – have reached a limit. Indeed, it is possible that they are becoming regressive political gestures. However, there are possibilities of moving forward in this new area of transformation and Rousselle claims that a logic of gender invention is opening up a new paradigm of thought.

Part of the popular Routledge Focus on Mental Health series, this book will be of immense value to students and teachers who aim to understand in a basic way some of the various main paradigms, theories, and concepts within gender and sexuality studies. It will also be an important attempt to think beyond those paradigms and theories.

Jacques Lacan and American Sociology: Be Wary of the Image (2019) Palgrave Macmillan.

Series: The Palgrave Lacan Series

In this Palgrave Pivot, Duane Rousselle aims to disrupt the hold that pragmatist ideology has had over American sociology by demonstrating that the social bond has always been founded upon a fundamental and primordial bankruptcy. Using the Lacanian theory of “capitalist discourse,” Rousselle demonstrates that most of early American sociology suffered from an inadequate account of the “symbolic” within the mental and social lives of the individual subject. The psychoanalytic aspect of the social bond remained theoretically undeveloped in the American context. Instead it is the “image,” a product of the imaginary, which takes charge over any symbolic function. This intervention into pragmatic sociology seeks to recover the tradition of “grand theory” by bringing psychoanalytical and sociological discourse into fruitful communication with one another.

Lacanian Realism: Political and Clinical Psychoanalysis (2018) Bloomsbury.

Preface: Katerina Kolozova

Alain Badiou has claimed that Quentin Meillassoux’s book After Finitude (Bloomsbury, 2008) “opened up a new path in the history of philosophy.” And so, whether you agree or disagree with the speculative realism movement, it has to be addressed. Lacanian Realism does just that. This book reconstructs Lacanian dogma from the ground up: first, by unearthing a new reading of the Lacanian category of the real; second, by demonstrating the political and cultural ingenuity of Lacan’s concept of the real, and by positioning this against the more reductive analyses of the concept by Slavoj Žižek, Alain Badiou, Saul Newman, Todd May, Joan Copjec, Jacques Rancière, and others, and; third, by arguing that the subject exists intimately within the real. Lacanian Realism is an imaginative and timely exploration of the relationship between Lacanian psychoanalysis and contemporary continental philosophy.

Post-Anarchism: A Reader (2011) Pluto Press.

Edited by Duane Rousselle and Sureyyya Evren

Post-anarchism has been of considerable importance in the discussions of radical intellectuals across the globe in the last decade. In its most popular form, it demonstrates a desire to blend the most promising aspects of traditional anarchist theory with developments in post-structuralist and post-modernist thought. Post-Anarchism: A Reader includes the most comprehensive collection of essays about this emergent body of thought, making it an essential and accessible resource for academics, intellectuals, activists and anarchists interested in radical philosophy.

Many of the chapters have been formative to the development of a distinctly ‘post-anarchist’ approach to politics, aesthetics, and philosophy. Others respond to the so-called ‘post-anarchist turn’ with caution and scepticism. The book also includes original contributions from several of today’s ‘post-anarchists’, inviting further debate and new ways of conceiving post-anarchism across a number of disciplines.

The Subject of Change: Lessons from the European Graduate School (2013)

Alain Badiou
Edited by Duane Rousselle

Alain Badiou occupies the place of the teacher whose primary responsibility rests on the transmission of tradition. The transmission occurs as a consequence of the teacher, the master, the professor, or, as it happens, the old man. Clearly, Badiou occupies all of these roles. However, what concerns us today is that he is an old man and that the old man is the man who is approaching death. In fact, he does not shy away from this designation. Rather, he acknowledges this point with a smile: “Do not say that I am really a young man because it is not true. I know that I am seventy-five years old.” Our teacher is fully aware that he is at the “beginning of the last straight line of life.” The possibility of the death of the old man necessitates a thinking about the preservation of the transmission of the future. The Subject of Change is a sustained engagement with the concept of change. The questions it asks include: what is a change?, what is a true change?, is change better than immobility?, what are the different types of change?, and, finally, what is the localization of change?

After Post-Anarchism (2012) LBC / Repartee Books

Post-anarchists have hitherto relied on post-structuralist critiques of ontological essentialism in order to situate their discourse in relation to the traditional anarchist discourse. Post-anarchism requires the elaboration of another important line of critique against epistemological foundationalism – to accomplish this task, this book takes post-anarchism to its limit through a reading of the philosophy of Georges Bataille. Georges Bataille’s philosophy allows for new ways of conceiving anarchist ethics that are not predicated upon essentialist categories, foundationalist truth-claims, or the agency of the subject in the political context. After Post-Anarchism, we challenge the hegemony that epistemology has enjoyed for several centuries of political and philosophical thought.

Also appeared in such books as:

Coronavirus, Psychoanalysis, and Philosophy: Conversations on Pandemics, Politics and Society (Fernando Castrillon & Thomas Marchevsky, Eds.) (2021) Routledge.

The essays in this volume are a set of responses to the Coronavirus crisis by distinguished philosophers and psychoanalysts from around the globe.

The Coronavirus irrupted making swift and deep cuts in the fabric of our existence: The risks of contagion and indefinite periods of isolation have radically altered the functioning of society. Pandemics do not wait for comprehension in order to proliferate. Confusion, sickness, and death punctuate the failure of governments worldwide to respond. This collection of writings examines the effects of the pandemic and the conditions that make possible such a global crisis. The writers provoke us to consider how capitalism, governmental power, and biopolitics mould the contours of life and death. The contributors in this collection ignite urgent political dialogue, address emergent transformations in the social field and offer perspectives on shifts in subjectivity and analytic practice. Beyond providing reflections on the impact of the Coronavirus, the authors point to determinants of how the crisis will unfold and what may be on the horizon.

This book will be invaluable to psychoanalysts, psychotherapists, philosophers, and all those interested in the implications of the virus for psychoanalytic practice and theory, and the social, cultural and political spheres of our world.

The Palgrave Encyclopedia of the Possible. (2020) Palgrave Macmillan.

Chapter: “Jacques Lacan”

The Palgrave Encyclopedia of the Possible represents a comprehensive resource for researchers and practitioners interested in an emerging multidisciplinary area within psychology and the social sciences: the study of how we engage with and cultivate the possible within self, society and culture.

Far from being opposed either to the actual or the real, the possible engages with concrete facts and experiences, with the result of transforming them. This encyclopedia examines the notion of the possible and the concepts and themes associated with it from standpoints within psychology, philosophy, sociology, neuroscience and logic, as well as multidisciplinary fields of research including anticipation studies, future studies, complexity theory and creativity research.

Presenting multiple perspectives on the possible, the authors consider the distinct social, cultural and psychological processes – e.g., imagination, counterfactual thinking, wonder, play, inspiration, and many others – that define our engagement with new possibilities in domains as diverse as the arts, architecture, design, education and business.

The Zizek Dictionary. (2014) Routledge. Edited by Rex Butler.

Chapter: “Imaginary, Symbolic, Real.”

Slavoj Žižek is the most popular and discussed philosopher in the world today. His prolific writings – across philosophy, psychoanalysis, political and social theory, film, music and religion – always engage and provoke. The power of his ideas, the breadth of his references, his capacity for playfulness and confrontation, his willingness to change his mind and his refusal fundamentally to alter his argument – all have worked to build an extraordinary international readership as well as to elicit much critical reaction. The Žižek Dictionary brings together leading Žižek commentators from across the world to present a companion and guide to Žižekian thought. Each of the 60 short essays examines a key term and, crucially, explores its development across Žižek’s work and how it fits in with other concepts and concerns. The dictionary will prove invaluable both to readers coming to Žižek for the first time and to those already embarked on the Žižekian journey.

Umbra Journal: The Object. The Center for the Study of Psychoanalysis and Culture.

Chapter: “The New Hysterical Question”

To borrow Lacan’s terminology, it is not without a certain jouissance that we note Umbr(a) begins properly with the drive and ends here with the object. Unlike publications that produce their own temporality through the sequence of cardinal numbers that mark their individual iterations, Umbr(a) has always acknowledged its fantasmatic circuitry; every issue is numbered one. That each is one means that none of them can be the last one. Therefore, allow us to be the first to invite you into your own enjoyment at any time you can go back to number one, again and again.