Tag Archives: Subjectivity

Interpreting How Much Land does a Man Need: A Sartrean Existentialist Perspective (Published)

Jean Paul Sartre, one of the key figures in the philosophy of Existentialism, explores man and the world from the perspective of human consciousness and puts forward the concept of subjectivity, believing existence precedes essence. Leo Tolstoy, one of the heavyweights in the literary world, has produced a number of impressive short stories with philosophical wisdom, among which stands How Much Land does a Man Need. Pakhom, the protagonist of the story, totally gripped by his lust for land, meets the end of his existence after making a series of choices. From the perspective of Sartrean existentialism, this paper analyzes the tragic existence of Pakhom and holds that it is Pakhom who should and must bear full responsibility for the destruction of his existence which is resulted from his inner desire on one hand and the state of contradiction and opposition among people on the other.

Keywords: Existence, How Much Land does a Man Need, Sartrean Existentialism, Subjectivity


There is no consensus regarding Shakespeare’s attitudes towards women. Some, like James Shapiro, deem him “the most noble feminist of them all” [sic] (270), whereas others like David Mann argue that he had a “scant concern” for the feelings of women (22). Whichever might be the case, it is often argued that Shakespeare’s rendering of women in his tragedies differs drastically from the way he has portrayed the heroines of his comedies. The reason for this double standard could be analyzed in the context of Shakespearean drama and the attitudes of the Renaissance society towards women. This paper intends to argue that the reason for this incongruity stems from the way that women were socially constructed in the era and as much culturally conditioned. To find out the underlying base of this construction, this study endeavors to examine the subjectivity of women in Shakespeare’s tragedies through the Lacanian- Althusserian dialectic of identity formation. What this paper seeks to accomplish is to demonstrate that the Lacanian-Althusserian dialectic provides a more comprehensive and lucrative explanation for the process of subject formation than just a psychoanalytical or structuralist Marxist approach. The Lacanian-Althusserian dialectic focuses on the close affinity between the Lacanian notion of linguistic alienation and the misperceived identity of the infantile period, and the Althusserian concept of ideological interpellation and the claim regarding individuals’ being “always already subjects” in society. After applying these notions to the women who populate his tragedies, this study aims at positing that these women are the pure embodiment of the ideological values of their epoch, ideologies that deprive of them of any autonomy and individuality.

Keywords: Althusser, Lacan, Shakespeare, Subjectivity, Tragedies

Sexual, Textual and Traumatic subjectivity: August Strindberg representation of class and sexual conflict in Miss Julie (Review Completed - Accepted)

This paper aims at understanding the importance of sexuality and the ways in which sexuality is accorded central status in an attempt to understand human relations, pleasure and satisfaction, sexual subject in culture, to reveal varying degrees of trepidation and anxiety about the ambiguities of sexuality i.e androgyny represents the resolution of the anxieties and tensions of sexual difference in favor of complementarity. In terms of class and gender this paper explores the patriarchal and misogynistic frameworks in which gender and sex were constructed in late 19th century and early 20th century; and how class and power mean mean that, that sexual never signifies in social isolation i.e power comes into play in the machinery of production, in families, limited groups and institutions. In terms of traumatic theory, this paper will see at how sexual trauma takes form of a psychological and ontological angst after reaching sexual maturity.

Keywords: Androgyny, Misogyny, Power, Sexuality, Subjectivity, Trauma