Oedipus Lex offers an original and evocative reading of legal history and institutional practice in the light of psychoanalysis and aesthetics. It explores the unconscious of law through a wealth of historical and contemporary examples. Peter Goodrich provides an anatomy of law's melancholy and boredom, of addiction to law, of legal repressions, and the aesthetics of jurisprudence. He retraces the genealogy of law and invokes the failures and exclusions--the poets, women, and outsiders--that legal science has left in its wake.Goodrich analyzes the role and power of the image of law and details the history of law's plural jurisdictions and traditions of resistance to law. He explores mechanisms of repression and representation as constituents of modern subjectivity, using long-abandoned medieval texts and early appearances of feminism as resources for the understanding and renewal of legal scholarship. Not simply deconstruction but also reconstruction, this work is keenly attuned to the discontinuties, silences, and gaps in the cultural tradition called law.