This chapter is in the part of the book headed ‘The Real’, Lacan’s third order of human existence, and the one that is probably most hard to conceptualise. As I said earlier, this is because it concerns that which lies resolutely outside signification (hence beyond the Symbolic and the Imaginary). Its existence can thus be felt only at times when we find ourselves ‘lost for words’, undone by events; in short, when we find that we are not at home in the universe. It therefore seems apposite to introduce this notion through the concept of the ‘uncanny’, or ‘unhomely’ (or, indeed, ‘unhomey’, as US usage has it), which, as Richard Gooding (2008: 392) remarks, ‘has only lately begun to attract critical attention’ in children’s literature.
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