Wallace Stevens' complex poetry often eludes the grasp of the most tenacious reader. This critical text attempts an intensive reading of the most obscure verses through the hermeneutical lens of psychoanalytic criticism. Using Lacanian theory, the book corroborates the suspicion of various critics regarding Stevens' psychical health, examining the nature of its crisis and the cause. Avoiding intentional fallacy, the work concentrates on Stevens' language itself, revealing a use of symbols that characterize neurosis, thus shifting criticism from the poet's person to his text. A useful work for university students, scholars, and teachers alike.
Chetan Deshmane is associate professor of English at the University of Pune, India. He has published in a number of journals, including The Explicator, Interdisciplinary Literary Studies, Plath Profiles and Asian Quarterly. He is now editing a volume of essays on Indian English Literature.