A New Conception of Childhood and the Psychoanalytic Gesture in Clarice Lispector

  • Sofia Masdeu Yale University
Keywords: Child's experience, Foreign Legion, Covert Joy, Psychoanalysis, intersubjectivity


This article examines the emerging centrality of the child’s experience as manifested in selected stories from Clarice Lispector's The Foreign Legion and Covert Joy. The publication of both these works overlapped with an emerging psychological and psychoanalytical discourse in Brazilian mass media in the mid-twentieth century, during which a new conception of childhood was arising. In addition to this, Clarice's own articles and columns on the topic demonstrate her affinity with the new paradigm, in particular her questioning of the mother-son hierarchy. Ultimately, this work aims for an interimplication of psychoanalysis and literature, frightening off the demons of interdisciplinary approaches.