An Unnerving Otherness: English Nationalism and Rusedski’s Smile

Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society 26 (4):452-472 (2021)
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Abstract

In view of scholarly work that has explored the socio-psycho significance of national performativity, the body and the “other,” this article critically analyses newspaper representations of the Canadian-born British tennis player Greg Rusedski. Drawing on Lacanian interpretations of the body, it illustrates how Rusedski’s media framing centered on a particular feature of his body—his “smile.” In doing so, we detail how Rusedski’s “post-imperial” Otherness—conceived as a form of “extimacy” (extimité)—complicated any clear delineation between “us” and “them,” positing instead a dialectical understanding of the splits, voids and contradictions that underscore the national “us.”

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Jack Black
Sheffield Hallam University

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