Between the Sign and the Gaze

Between the Sign and the Gaze

A woman turns into a piece of furniture (Theodor Fontane's Effi Briest); a writer of children's books takes photos of naked little girls (Lewis Carroll); Mont Blanc becomes the maternal breast (Shelley); Hamlet mistakes Ophelia for a phallus (Lacan's Hamlet seminar); and mom turns out to have thermonuclear arms (Laurie Anderson's United States). Reviewing the ways in which women have been fantasized in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Western culture, Herman Rapaport offers a series of brilliant insights into the concept of the fantasm in modern art.