Take Her, She’s Yours
Take Her, She’s Yours merges memoir with critical theory as she recounts the unraveling of everything she thought she knew about selfhood, relationships, and desire. Through the story of an upbringing in a patriarchal Spanish and American household, a dissociative and painful relationship towards men and power, and a chaotic marriage and divorce, she interrogates the destructive fantasy of possessive individualism that permeates our psyches and our cultural expectations. Woven through this narrative is an account of the unique relationship that Jagoe has with her psychoanalyst, in which she works through her tendency to give herself away to others, and learns to navigate the many contradictory selves that we all hold within us.
Praise for Take Her, She’s Yours
Take Her, She’s Yours transforms the developmental conventions of memoir into a document of unlearning defenses—such as the pseudo-openness of an enthralling sexual compulsion. Concepts of desire taken from literature and critical theory tangle with vivid flesh histories as Jagoe leaps out of her life and onto the cliff of an analyst’s chair, which she leaves for a beach at the end. Readers looking for a way to think differently about changing the shape of their love will find great interest here.
— Lauren Berlant, George M. Pullman Distinguished Service Professor, University of Chicago
‘Having an unconscious is not a moral failing.’ In this remarkably lucid account, Eva-Lynn Jagoe represents the oblique, indirect, processual, uncertain work of her psychoanalysis that gives her the words she needs to understand what had been so long opaque. After a lifetime of giving herself away so as not to be taken, she can at last say what she wants. The analytic work, apparently inchoate and directionless, takes her where she needs to go.
— Christina Crosby, Professor, Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Wesleyan University
Take Her, She’s Yours covers five years of therapy, but the narrative takes place across psychological time, spanning a childhood complicated by two mother figures of unequal class status and caregiving intentions; a traumatic adolescent experience of sexuality and power; the joy of intellectual and philosophical investigation; and marriage as a mingling—potent, sometimes toxic—of these drives of power-seeking, intellect, and sexuality.
— Julian Gunn, “Of Care and the Self,” review in Canadian Literature