Derek Hook

Associate Professor
McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts
Department of Psychology

203 Rockwell Hall
Phone: 412-396-6513


MA, Creative Writing, Birkbeck College, University of London, 2014
Ph.D., Psychology, University of the Witwatersrand, 2001
BA, Honours in Applied Psychology, University of the Witwatersrand, 1996
BA, University of the Witwatersrand, 1994

Derek Hook is a scholar and a practitioner of psychoanalysis with expertise in the area of critical psychology and psychosocial studies. His research interests essentially converge on the theme of ‘the psychic life of power', and his publications tend to take up either psychoanalytic, postcolonial or discourse analytic perspectives on facets of contemporary post-apartheid South Africa. His lecturing over recent years has reflected this diverse set of interests; he has offered classes and seminars on: Frantz Fanon and formations of (post)colonial racism; Steve Biko and Black Consciousness; Freud's mass psychology; discourse analysis and psychoanalysis as critical reading methodologies; Slavoj Žižek and the role of fantasy and jouissance in ideology.

Derek is currently completing a book exploring the psychosocial dimensions of Lacanian psychoanalysis, tentatively entitled ‘Five Moments in Lacan'. His most recent work has taken a biographical turn. It aims to explore, via various psychosocial perspective and the techniques of narrative non-fiction, what the life of Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe, the great Pan-Africanist intellectual and opponent of apartheid, means for today's South Africa.

Professional background

Derek began his academic career as a lecturer in psychology at the University of the Witwatersrand in 1999. In 2004 he took up a post at the London School of Economics, where he lectured in Social Psychology until 2011. This was followed by three years in the Department of Psychosocial Studies at Birkbeck College. Between 2007 and 2013 Derek was a trainee in the psychoanalytic training programme of the Centre for Freudian Analysis and Research in London. He won an Independent Social Research Foundation Fellowship grant in 2013 for a project entitled ‘Post-apartheid libidinal economy'. In the same year he received a Mellon Award and became an Invited Distinguised Scholar at the University of Pretoria, where he is an Extraordinary Professor in Psychology.

Recent Publications
Books and Chapters

Hook, D. (In Press). In the name of Mandela. In the Courtroom as Space of Resistance: Reflections on 50 Years of the Rivonia Trial.

Hook, D. (In Press). Mandela as master signifier. In the The Remains of the Social.

Hook, D. (In Press). The racist bodily imaginary. In Invitation to Psychology as a Human Science.

Hook, D. (In Press). Vicissitudes of anger: Psychanalysis in the time of Apartheid. In Psychoanalysis in the Age of Totalitarianism.

Parker, I. & Hook, D. (2015). Deconstruction, psychopathology and dialectics. In I. Parker, Psychology after deconstruction. London & New York: Routledge.

Hook, D. (2014). Discourse, knowledge, materiality, history: Foucault and discourse analysis. In B. Gough (Ed.) Qualitative Research in Psychology. London: Sage.

Hook, D. (2014). Fanon e a economia libidinal. In J.A. Fantini (Ed.), Raizes da Intolerancia. Editoria de Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos.

Hook, D. (2014). Nationalist libido: On love and circuits of attachment. In G. Sullivan (Ed.) Understanding Collective Pride and Group Identity. New York and London: Routledge

Truscott, R. & Hook, D. (2014). Lessons from the postcolonial: Frantz Fanon, psychoanalysis, and the psychology of political critique. In C. Kinnvall, T. Capelos & P. Nesbitt-Larking (Eds.), Palgrave Handbook of Global Political Psychology. London & New York: Palgrave.

Hook, D. (2014). Steve BikoVoices of Liberation. HSRC Press: Cape Town.

Hook, D. (2013). (Post)apartheid Conditions. Palgrave: London & New York.

Stevens, G., Duncan, N. & Hook, D. (Ed.) (2013). Race, Memory and the Apartheid Archive. London & New York: Palgrave.

Hook, D. (2011). A Critical Psychology of the Postcolonial: The Mind of Apartheid. Routledge: London & New York.

Hook, D., Franks, B. & Bauer, M. (Eds.) (2011). Social Psychology of Communication. Palgrave: London & New York.


Hook, D. (2014). Antagonism, social critique and the ‘violent reverie'. Psychology in Society, 46, 21-34.

Hook, D. (2014). Love, artificiality and mass identification. Psychodynamic Practice, 20, 2, 128-143

Hook, D. & Truscott, R. (2013). Fanonian ambivalence: Psychoanalysis and postcolonial critique. Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology,33, 3, 555-169.

Hook, D. & Glaveanu, V. (2013). Image analysis: An interactive approach. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 10, 4, 355-368.

Hook, D. (2013). The racist bodily imaginary: The image of the body-in-pieces in (post)apartheid culture. Subjectivity, 6, 254-271.

Hook, D. (2013). Towards a Lacanian Group Psychology: The Prisoner's Dilemma and the Trans-subjective. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour, 43, 2, 115-132.

Hook, D. (2013). Nixon's ‘full speech': Imaginary and Symbolic registers of communication. Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology, 33, 1, 32-50.

Hook, D. (2013). Tracking the Lacanian unconscious in language. Psychodynamic Practice.19, 1, 38-54.

Hook, D. (2012). Apartheid's lost attachments (1): On psychoanalytic reading practice. Psychology in Society, 43, 40-53.

Hook, D. (2012). Apartheid' lost attachments (2): Melancholic loss and symbolic identification. Psychology in Society, 43, 54-71.

Hook, D. (2012). Screened history: Nostalgia as defensive formation. Journal of Peace Psychology, 18, 3, 225-239.

Hook, D. (2011). White privilege, psychoanalytic ethics and the limitations of political silence. South African Journal of Philosophy, 30 (3), 495-502.

Hook, D. (2011). Narrative form, ‘impossibility' and the retrieval of apartheid history. Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 16, 71-89.

Hook, D. & Long, C. (2011). The Apartheid Archive Project, heterogeneity, and the psychoanalysis of racism. Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 16, 1-10.

Hook, D. (2011). Retrieving Biko: A Black Consciousness critique of whiteness. African Identities. 9, 1, 19-32.

Hook, D. (2011). Psychoanalytic contributions to the political analysis of affect and identification. Ethnicities, 11, 1. 107-115.

Bowman, B. & Hook, D. (2011). Paedophile as apartheid event: Genealogical lessons for working with the Apartheid Archive. Psychology in Society, 40, 64-82.

Hook, D. (2010). The powers of emptiness. Theory and Psychology, 20, 6, 855-870.

Other Scholarly Work

Lacanian Psychoanalysis: Theory & Practice, PSYC 673

Critical and Post-structural Psychology, PSYC 411

Introduction to Psychology as a Human Science