‘Lacan and the Concept of the Real’ by Tom Eyers

Published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2012.

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This is the first book in English to explore in detail the genesis and consequences of Lacan’s concept of the ‘Real’, providing readers with an invaluable key to one of the most influential ideas of modern times.


Tom Eyers is Andrew W. Mellon Fellow in the Interdisciplinary Project in the Humanities at Washington University in St. Louis, USA.


‘The Lacanian concept of the Real is itself a case of the real – a frustrating deadlock, combining a series of opposite determinations: lack, without lack; impossible, unavoidable; outside the symbolic, the effect of a symbolic deadlock… Tom Eyers does the impossible: he provides a systematic outline of the concept of the Real in all its dimensions, from its genesis and transformations to its clinical and philosophical implications. His book is thus simply inescapable for anyone who wants to find a way in the labyrinth of Lacanian theory and of modern thought itself. It is simply something one will have to have at his side all the time while reading hundreds of other books.’

– Slavoj Žižek

‘Although references to Lacan’s notion of the Real are widespread in today’s theoretical humanities, a rigorous, systematic presentation of this key concept has been missing. Eyers’s superb study remedies this lack. With precision and insight, Eyers brings to light the interconnected facets of the Lacanian Real. Moreover, he creatively advances a number of contemporary discussions and debates, masterfully revealing the philosophical power and richness Lacan offers his readers.’

– Adrian Johnston, University of New Mexico, USA

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