The Psychoanalytic Geography of Alan Partridge

Preamble: Alan Gordon Partridge is a (fictional) TV and Radio presenter, based in Norfolk, UK. For further info, Youtube currently hosts a three-part (fictional) TV documentary about his (fictional) life : part 1   part 2   part 3

What have Lacan and Foucalt to do with Alan Partridge? For answers, see the work of Paul Kingsbury, who is an Associate Professor at Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, B.C. Canada, and who is a “Psychoanalytic Geographer” (*see explanatory note below) The professor presents a new paper in the journal Cultural Geographies May 29, 2014. ‘Becoming literate in desire with Alan Partridge’

It cites the Partridgesque behaviours seen above (the air guitar performance and the Inland Revenue inspectors’ visit) and explores possible relevancies that Alan Partridge might have with the work of Jaques Lacan, [+ve link , -ve link ] and Michel Foucalt [+ve link , -ve link ]

Here’s a sample excerpt :

“For Lacan, the human subject desires insofar as she or he is a speaking-being or a ‘parlêtre’ to use Lacan’s neologism that joins being (l’être) with speaking (parler). As Partridge tells us, ‘Chat is what I do’ and despite ‘being crushed by a dead cow . . . encountering “mentalist” fans . . . [or] suffering a breakdown, Toblerone addiction and skewering his foot on a spike he always bounces back’. Furthermore, Partridge’s speech, specifically, his vocabulary, tonalities, facial expressions, mannerisms, and so on teem with uneasy confidence, nervousness, and volatility. In so doing, Partridge brings to the fore the ways in which language is menaced and littered by the inscriptions of negation.”

* note : The professor is co-editor (along with professor Steve Pile, Open University, UK) of a new book entitled Psychoanalytic Geographies

“Psychoanalytic Geographies is a unique, path-breaking volume and a core text for anyone seeking to grasp how psychoanalysis helps us understand fundamental geographical questions, and how geographical understandings can offer new ways of thinking psychoanalytically. “

BONUSES :(related)

• The paper alerts us to a (mock) website for the Linton Travel Tavern.

• The (official) history of Toblerone™