The Psychodynamics of Casino Culture and Politics

Authors: Yates, C.

Journal: Journal of Psychosocial Studies

Publisher: Policy Press

ISSN: 1478-6737


The metaphor of the casino, with its associations of risk, uncertainty and illusion resonate at different levels of the contemporary cultural and political imagination where notions of chance and luck – together with the arbitrariness of being either a ‘winner’ or a ‘loser’ are pervading themes. This article discusses the notion of casino culture as a psycho-cultural formation and its relationship to the emergence of what I call ‘casino politics’. The article deploys a psycho-cultural approach that combines cultural and political analyses with object relations psychoanalysis in order to examine the cultural and unconscious investments that underpin the ideology of casino culture and its politics – particularly in the contemporary context of Brexit politics in the UK and Donald Trump’s Presidency in the US, where manic fantasies associated with gambling are mobilised as a defence against loss and uncertainty.

Source: Manual