The Surrealist Movement: Literature, Psychoanalysis and Politics

265A :  Modern Studies
Fall 2023
Class No: 30839
4226 Dwinelle Hall
Soraya Tlatli
3:00 PM - 6:00 PM

In this seminar we will consider the surrealist group as well as its poetic and political influence from the 1920’s to the 1960’s. We will first pay particular attention to the relationship between literature and psychoanalysis as well as to the specificity of the surrealist image. We will read various texts such as Les Champs Magnétiques, (Breton, Soupault), Le Manifeste du surréalisme, Martinique, charmeuse de serpents (Breton, Masson.) We will then focus our attention towards the ongoing exchange between Freud, Lacan, Breton and Dali. We will also discuss the political importance of the surrealist group in the ideological struggle against French colonialism. Finally, we will turn our attention toward the influence of the surrealist movement on francophone writers such as Mohammed Dib (Qui se souvient de la mer) and Aimé Césaire (Cahier d’un retour au pays natal).