This article considers Olga Tokarczuk’s novel E.E. (1995) as dialogic site for a critique of early twentieth-century psychology at the time of its engagement with spiritism. Carl Gustav Jung’s doctoral dissertation, “On the Psychology and Pathology of So-Called Occult Phenomena” (1902) serves as a key intertext. Tokarczuk’s heroine, an adolescent medium, Erna Eltzner (E.E.), fashioned after Jung’s case study, S.W., exemplifies the use of young female patients as research subjects, studied but not listened to. Jung himself is refracted in two distinct characters, each of whom exploits Erna Eltzner as a paradigmatic case for his respective ideological commitment. The novel offers a feminist sendup of paradigms of medical care, medical diagnosis, the ethics of science and the personhood of the patient. It points to a major blind spot in the scientific study of the psyche: patient well-being and treatment. The article takes an ethics-of-care approach to examine sites of empathy in the novel.

The text of this article is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.