This article explores Zainab Salbi’s autobiography, Between Two Worlds (2005), using a Lacanian analysis. The Lacanian reading of the early Mirror Stage of ego formation can be extended to better understand Salbi’s narration of her childhood and how this world of anticipation is crushed by a Symbolic world that comes to be dominated by Saddam Hussein and the traumatic eruptions of the Real. The article suggests that by introducing the figure of the mother as le grand autre, Salbi’s autobiography subverts the typical conceptualization of the Lacanian Symbolic order, which is dominated by the patriarchal signifier. I also argue that Saddam, an intrusive Name-of-the-Father, validates the biographical endeavor and lures the narrative discourse into being.

You do not currently have access to this content.