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
Bio and Expertise


Derek Hook is a scholar and a practitioner of psychoanalysis with expertise in the areas of Lacanian psychoanalysis, post-colonial theory (the work of Frantz Fanon in particular), the psychology of racism and critical social psychology.

Lacanian psychoanalysis - in both its clinical and socio-political applications - is the predominant focus of much of his teaching, research and clinical supervision. Derek has taught classes on Lacanian clinical and social theory in a variety of global and organizational from South Africa (University of the Witwatersrand, University of Pretoria) to the UK (Birkbeck College at the University of London, London School of Economics) and the US (Duquesne University) over the last 20 years.

In addition to co-editing the successful Palgrave Lacan Series with Calum Neill (which has published 16 titles in the past five years) he is one of three editors (along with Stijn Vanheule and Calum Neill) of the landmark 3-volume series Reading Lacan's Écrits (Routledge). His most recent book is Six Moments in Lacan (2017). His edited collection, Lie on Your Wounds: The Prison Correspondence of Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe was published in 2019 (Wits University/New York University Press).

Current projects include the development of two manuscripts to be published by Routledge's Psychology Press, the first, with Sheldon George, is entitled Lacan and Race, the second, with Leswin Laubscher and Miraj Desai, is entitled Fanon, Phenomenology and Psychology.

His applied (socio-political) research tends to focus on the various psychical modalities of racism, often in the contexts of American and South African culture. He is particularly interested in a psychoanalytic tracing of the various affective/psychical dimensions of race and racism, as exemplified in recent publications focusing on topics such as: white anxiety, petrified life, the temporality of racism in Fanon, death-bound subjectivity and Fanon's zone of non-being, the death-drive in culture, and racist and racializing embodiment.

In addition to his Duquesne appointment, Derek is an Extraordinary Professor of Psychology at the University of Pretoria and South Africa. He teaches an annual summer class on Lacanian Psychoanalysis in the Department of Psychosocial Studies, Birkbeck College at the University of London. He was the recipient of International Social Research Foundation grant in 2015. He has twice been awarded a Loogman Grant from the Center for African Studies at Duquesne University (for research on the anti-apartheid Africanist intellectual and political leader Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe), and he received a the McAnulty College Award for excellence in research in 2016.


  • Freudian and Lacanian psychoanalysis (in both clinical and social domains)
  • Psychoanalysis of race and racism (including critique and analysis of whiteness and coloniality)
  • The work of Frantz Fanon (particularly as applied to psychology)
  • Critical social psychology
  • Psychoanalytic approaches to psychosis
Recent Publications

(Only recent publications are listed - a list of faculty publications prior to 2010 can be found here)


George, S. & Hook, D. (Eds.) (forthcoming, 2021). Lacan and Race. London & New York: Routledge.

Laubscher, L., Hook, D. & Desai, M. (Eds.) (forthcoming, 2021). Fanon, Phenomenology and Psychology. London & New York: Routledge.

Hook, D. Neill, C. & Vanheule, S. (Eds.) (2019). Reading Lacan's Ecrits: From ‘The Freudian Thing' to ‘Remarks on Lagache'. London & New York: Routledge.

Hook, D. (Ed.) (2019). Lie on Your Wounds: Selected Prison Letters of Roeert Mangaliso Sobukwe. Wits University Press.

Vanheule, S., Hook, D. & Neill, C. (Eds.) (2019). Reading Lacan's Ecrits: From ‘Signification of the Phallus' to ‘Metaphor of the Subject'. London & New York: Routledge.

Hook, D. (2017). Six Moments in Lacan. London & New York: Routledge.

Hook, D. (2014). Steve Biko: Voice 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. Translated into Portuguese (2016) as A Psicologia Social da Comunicação. Camara Brasileira do Livro: Sao Paulo.

Hook, D. (2007). Foucault, Psychology and the Analytics of Power. Palgrave: London & New York.


Hook, D. (in press). Death-bound subjectivity: Fanon's zone of nonbeing. Subjectivity.
Hook, D. (in press). Fanon/Lacan: Points of Intersection. Psychoanalysis & History.
Hook, D. (2020). Fanon with Lacan: Decolonialization by psychoanalytic means...? Journal for the British Society of Phenomenology.
Hook, D. (2020). White anxiety in (post)apartheid South Africa. Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society.
Hook, D. (2018). Master signifiers, racist fantasy, unknowability....and enjoyment in the colonial field. Psychology in Society, 57, 48-57.
George, S. & Hook, D. (2018). Lacanian praxis and social intervention. Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society. 23(3).
Hook, D. (2018). Das ding as object of melancholia. Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 28, 4, 491-495.
Hook, D. (2018). Melancholic psychosis: A Lacanian approach. Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 28, 4, 466-480.
• Hook, D. (2018). Racism and jouissance: Evaluating the ‘racism as (the theft of) enjoyment' hypothesis. Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society. 23(3), 244-266
Hook, D. (2017). The failings of depression: A review of Lacanian critiques. Acta-Psychopathologica. 3:55. doi: 10.4172/2469-6676.100127
• Hook, D. (2017). What is ‘enjoyment as a political factor'? Political Psychology, 38, 4, 605-620. DOI: 10.1111/pops.12417
• Hook, D. (2017). The subject of psychology: A Lacanian critique. Social and Personality Psychology Compass. DOI: 10.1111/spc3.12316
• Yakushko, O & Hook, D. (2016). Whatever happened to the human experience?  Comment on the special issue on undergraduate education in psychology (2016), American Psychologist, 72(2), 173-175.
• Hook, D. (2016). A threatening personification of freedom or: Sobukwe and repression. Safundi: The Journal of South African and American Studies, 17(2), 1-24. DOI: 10.1080/17533171.2016.1171471
• Hook, D. (2016). Of symbolic mortification and ‘undead' life: Slavoj Zizek on the death drive. Psychoanalysis & History, 18(2), 221-256.
• Pietrusza, C. & Hook, D. (2016). "You're kicking me out?" Scansion and the variable-length session in Lacanian clinical praxis. Psychodynamic Practice.
• Hook, D. (2016). Sobukwe and the psychosocial. Psychology in Society, 50.
• Ramose, M. & Hook, D. (2016). To whom does the land belong? Derek Hook interviews M. Ramose. Psychology in Society, 50.
• Hook, D. & Vanheule, S. (2015). Revisiting the master signifier, or, Mandela and repression. Frontiers in Psychology: Psychoanalysis and Neuropsychoanalysis.
• Hook, D. (2015). Petrified life. Social Dynamics A Journal of African Studies, 41, 3, 438-460.
• 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 to compositional elements. 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. (2013). Discourse analysis: Terminable or interminable? Qualitative Research in Psychology,10, 3, 249-253.
• 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.
• Zizek, S., Aristodemou, M., Frosh, S. & Hook, D. (2010). Unbehagen and the subject: An interview with Slavoj Zizek. Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 15, 418-428.
• Hook, D. (2010). Power and Das Ding: Sublimation as a political factor. Journal of the Centre of Freudian Analysis & Research, 20, 91-121.
• Hook, D. (2010). The powers of emptiness. Theory and Psychology, 20, 6, 855-870.
• Hook, D. & Neill, C. (2010). Žižek, political philosophy and subjectivity. Subjectivity, 3 (1), 1-6.


Binkley, S. & Hook, D. (2021). Psychology as apparatus: An interview with Sam Binkley. In D. Goodman & H. McDonald. London & New York: Routledge.
• Hook, D. (2021). Racial ontologizing through the body. In L. Laubscher, D. Hook & M. Desai (Eds.) Fanon, Phenomenology and Psychology. London & New York: Routledge.
• Hook, D. (2021). Reconceptualizing John. Nash's psychosis: A Lacanian perspective. In R. S. Brown & M. Brown (Eds). Emancipatory Perspectives on Madness: Psychological, Social, and Spiritual Dimensions.
• Hook, D. (2020). Death drive redux: A Žižekian mapping. In T. Wessely & P. Lerner (Eds.) Psykoanalysen och döden (Psychoanalysis and Death). Stockholm: TankeKraft. [In Swedish].
• Hook, D. (2020). Toward an erotics of truth - reading session 1. In G. Basu Thakur & J. Dickstein (Eds.) Reading Lacan's Seminar VIII. London & New York: Palgrave.
• Hook, D. (2019). The master signifier, discourse analysis and the unconscious. In N.L. Junior, C. Dunker and D. Pavón-Cuéllar (Eds.) "Análise Lacaniana de Discurso: Subversão e Pesquisa e Crítica" (Lacanian Discourse Analysis: Subversion and Critical Research) Appris: Sao Paulo.
• Hook, D. (2019). The lonely prisoner was a man of letters. In B. Pogrund. (Ed.) Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe: A New Look. Johannesburg: Jonathan Ball.
• Hook, D. (2019). "The white centre-line vanishes....": Fragility and anxiety in the elusive metropolis
In N. Falkoff & C. Van Staden (Eds.) Anxious Joburg. Johannesburg: Wits University Press.
• Hook, D., Neil, C. & Vanheule, S. (2019). Introduction to ‘Reading the Ecrits': La trahison de l'ecriture. In S. Vanheule, D. Hook, & C. Neill, Reading Lacan's Ecrits: From ‘Signification of the Phallus' to ‘Metaphor of the Subject'. London & New York: Routledge, pp. xvii-xxi.
• Hook, D. (2019). Racism. In Y. Stavrakakis (Ed.) Routledge Handbook of Psychoanalytical Political Theory. Routledge.
• Hook, D. (2018). Lacan and the psychological. In B.W Becker, J.P. Manoussakis & D. Goodman (Eds.) Unconscious Incarnations. Psychoanalytic and philosophical perspectives on the body. London: Routledge, pp. 113-140.
• Hook, D. (2018). Fantasy. In J.R. Di Leo (Ed). The Bloomsbury Handbook to Literary and Cultural Theory. Bloomsbury: London.
• Hook, D. & Macdonald, H. (2018). The psychic life of the political. In H. Macdonald (Ed). Critical and Theoretical Perspectives in Psychology: Dialogues at the Edge in American Psychological Discourse.
• Hook, D. (2017). Melancholia, the death drive and Into the Wild. In B. Sheils & J. Walsh (Eds). Narcissism, Melancholia and the Subject of Community. London: Palgrave.
• Hook, D. (2017). The Mandela imaginary. In R. Truscott (Ed.) Remains of the Social. Cape Town: HSRC Press.
• Hook, D. (2016). Caught in a picture. In C. Fischer, R. Brooke & L. Laubscher (Eds.), The qualitative vision for psychology: An invitation to a human science approach. Duquesne University Press: Pittsburgh.


Palgrave Lacan Book Series, co-edited with Calum Neill. All titles are published by Palgrave-Macmillan (London & New York).

  • Brenner, L.S. (2020). The autistic subject.
  • Matthews, P.D. (2020). Lacan the charlatan.
  • Basu Thakur, G. & Dickstein, J. (2020). Reading Lacan's Seminar VIII.
  • Wang, C. (2019). Subjectivity In-Between Times.
  • Di Liberto, Y. (2019). Being and Contemporary Psychoanalysis.
  • Rousselle, D. (2019). Jacques Lacan and American Sociology.
  • Tombras, C. (2019). Discourse Ontology.
  • Moncayo, R. (2018). Knowing, Not-Knowing and Jouissance.
  • Matviyenko, S. & Roof, J. (2018) Lacan and the Posthuman.
  • Bristow, D. (2018). 2001: A Space Odyssey and Lacanian Psychoanalytic Theory.
  • Basu Thakur, G. & Dickstein, J. M. (2017) Lacan and the Nonhuman.
  • Caine, D. & Wright, C. (2017) Perversion Now!
  • Johnston, A. (2017) Irrepressible Truth.
  • Nobus, D. (2017) The Law of Desire.
  • Greenshields, W. (2016). Writing the Structures of the Subject.
  • Tryer, B. (2016) Out of the Past.

Other Scholarly Work


  • Lacanian Psychoanalysis: Theory & Practice
  • Critical and Post-structural Psychology
  • Introduction to Psychology as a Human Science

YouTube Channel and Interviews

YouTube Channel

Follow Dr. Hook on YouTube

Harvard African Studies Workshop | 3 April 2017 


Derek Hook, "Six Moments in Lacan: Communication and Identification in Psychology and Psychoanalysis" (Routledge, 2018) | New Books Network

"Six Moments in Lacan" Interview

Stijn Vanheule, Derek Hook and Calum Neill, "Reading Lacan's Écrits" (Routledge, 2018) | New Books Network

"Reading Lacan's Écrits" Interview

Post-colonial psychoanalysis, philosophy-Rendering Unconscious

Rendering Unconscious