chapter  11
To defy the fates: doubt as an expression of envy
Pages 13

In this chapter I will investigate the nature of envy as developed in the paper ‘Envy in everyday life’ by Betty Joseph (1986). In the character of Heyst in the novel of Joseph Conrad (1915), Victory, I want to examine how the presence of envy manifests itself as doubt, in particular self-doubt.This doubt differs from the obsessional sense of doubt versus certainty, or the creative doubt involved in the act of making something that must be divested of omnipotence, and concerns more fundamentally the inability to establish trust and confidence in the goodness of the object and therefore in the self.This is a consequence of the failure of the ego to cope with envy and paves the way instead for a collapse to take place in the internal world.