Title Page, Copyright

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Contents

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-xiv

First and foremost, Elaine Hadley deserves no end of credit and gratitude for having read, discussed, edited, and shepherded this project in so many of its forms of living with such immense acuity and dedication. Second, I also owe a huge debt of appreciation to Beth Povinelli and Beth Helsinger...

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Introduction

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pp. 1-26

The definition of instinct as an impetus that substitutes for reason entails a strange but familiar catachresis. The first entry for “Instinct” to appear in the OED, for instance, switches between the language of impulsivity and epistemology without seeming to find this vacillation...

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1. Reading Like an Animal

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pp. 27-60

A sphex wasp attacks a cricket, paralyzing it and burying it with her grubs. When they finally hatch, these grubs will eat the cricket alive. Watching the wasp’s assault is a rapt George John Romanes, the most doctrinaire of Darwin’s followers and the author of a trilogy of texts on evolutionary theories...

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2. The Case of Sexology at Work

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pp. 61-93

In his famous polemic against private philanthropy and state welfare in Man Versus the State, Herbert Spencer deploys the language of instinct to voice the common claim that poverty is a fault of character: “there is no political economy,” he writes, “by which one can get golden conduct out of...

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3. Freud’s Australia

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pp. 94-119

A text that undertakes a thorough perusal of late Victorian ethnological sources, Freud’s Totem and Taboo (1913) is unabashed in identifying “savages” as the instinctive analogues of Europe an neurotics. By adapting the detailed descriptions of “savage” rules and customs that prevailed in...

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4. Angel in the Big House

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pp. 120-154

In June 1909, the artist Marion Wallace Dunlop was arrested and incarcerated for stamping a passage from the Bill of Rights onto a wall in the House of Commons. Once in prison, she launched the first of what would become many suffragette hunger strikes, refusing food for ninety-one hours until...

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Coda

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pp. 155-158

Like all the chapters in this book, this last chapter on the debate over the suffragette hunger strikes narrates a moment when instinct’s function as a substitute for reason crosses paths with the idea of instinct as a spur to action, making it evident that the two are not always easily commensurate...

Notes

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pp. 159-196

Bibliography

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pp. 197-212

Index

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pp. 213-222