Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society

, Volume 19, Issue 2, pp 179–189 | Cite as

Hating government and voting against one’s interests: Self-Transgression, enjoyment, critique

  • Jason Glynos
Original Article
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Special Section: Psychosocial Effects of Neoliberalism, Part II


The psychoanalytic contribution to our understanding of hating government and voting against our own interests can be appreciated by invoking the categories of fantasy and enjoyment. Essential to the psychoanalytic enterprise is the idea that there is no necessary relation between a subject’s investment in a fantasmatic narrative and how faithfully this narrative reflects a consensus reality. As a prominent narrative element in political discourse, ‘big government’ can thus play for the subject two analytically distinct roles: an ideological role (linked to our fantasmatic investment in the world) and an epistemological role (linked to our understanding of the world). I argue that an appeal to fantasy not only helps us better grasp this difference in roles, but also enables us to appreciate its social and political implications.


self-transgression enjoyment fantasy ideology orthogonality critique 


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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jason Glynos
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of GovernmentUniversity of EssexColchesterUK

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