Laura Gonzalez

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18 Oct 2017

The Ramayana (modern version by Ramesh Menon) ****


Reading dates: 14 June to 12 October 2017

This is such a beautiful, primordial story … the Adi Kavya, the first epic. I loved it. Despite its length (900 pages) it is very dynamic and contains a lot of philosophical teachings. The characters are archetypal, eternal (Rama, Sita, Hanuman) and the narrative is one that does not age. I developed such a love for Hanuman and for Sita … Yet, her suffering is heart-wrenching, the outcome of it, really sad. That is why I would not re-read it, and would not give it 5 stars. In The Mahabharata, Panchali (and womanhood) triumphs. In the Ramayana, it suffers beyond bounds. 

I also did not understand the Rakshasa (a force of evil) character Ravana. His story is told after the abduction is resolved but it does not quite fit for me, he remains bookish, wordy and two-dimensional. 

I still learned so much reading this … about Brahma, Vishnu and Siva, about love and desire, about loyalty and about engineering and magic. It was a brilliant read.

Posted in Blog, Book Reviews, Reading, Yoga


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About Me

I am an artist and writer. My recent practice performance, film, dance, photography and text, and my work has been performed, exhibited and published in many venues in Europe and the US. I have spoken at numerous conferences and events, including the Museum for the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, the Medical Museum in Copenhagen, College Arts Association and the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society. When I am not following Freud, Lacan and Marx’s footsteps with my camera or creating performance works as part of my Athenaeum Research Fellowship at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, I teach postgraduate students at Transart Institute.

I am currently immersed in an interdisciplinary project exploring knowledge and the body of the hysteric. In 2013, together with Child and Adolescent Mental Health practitioner Frances Davies, I co-edited the book ‘Madness, Women and the Power of Art’, to which I contributed a work authored with Eleanor Bowen. My book ‘Make Me Yours: How Art Seduces’ was published by Cambridge Scholars in 2016. In this text, investigates psychoanalytic approaches to making and understanding objects of seduction, including an examination of parallels between artistic and analytic practices, a study of Manolo Blahnik’s shoes as objects of desire, a disturbing encounter with Marcel Duchamp’s last work, and the creation of a psychoanalytically inspired Discourse of the Artefact, a framework enabling the circulation of questions and answers through a relational approach to artworks.