Breach! The law's jouissance in Mieville's The City and The City

Hourigan, Daniel (2013) Breach! The law's jouissance in Mieville's The City and The City. Law, Culture and the Humanities, 9 (1). pp. 156-168. ISSN 1743-8721


This article critically examines the construction of law in China Mieville's weird detective narrative The City & The City (2009). The discussion charts the excesses of law's embodiment in Detective Tyador Borlu of the Beszel policzai with and against the primordial natural law discourse of the Law of Breach, and carefully examines the ways that this Law interdicts the common law in both parts of the fictional split city Beszel-Ul Qoma. Using the psychoanalytic concept of jouissance, this article unveils some of the modulations of authority presented by the novel's unusual arrangement of politics, common law, and natural law.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © The Author 2013. Permanent restricted access to published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Arts - School of Humanities and Communication
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2014 05:10
Last Modified: 07 Mar 2017 05:43
Uncontrolled Keywords: China Mieville; Jacques Lacan; Jouissance; law and culture; psychoanalytic philosophy; The City and The City
Fields of Research : 20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2005 Literary Studies > 200526 Stylistics and Textual Analysis
22 Philosophy and Religious Studies > 2203 Philosophy > 220318 Psychoanalytic Philosophy
18 Law and Legal Studies > 1801 Law > 180119 Law and Society
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970120 Expanding Knowledge in Language, Communication and Culture
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1177/1743872111404849

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