Diachrony in Psychoanalysis

Andre Green

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The question of diachrony has been an ongoing preoccupation of Andre Green throughout his psychoanalytic career. It was at the centre of the debates during the era of structuralism and opened up a range of issues for psychoanalysis. These included the question of primal experience and repetition, discovered belatedly by Freud but destined to play a major role. Recollection, a central theme in the early days of psychoanalysis, is now seen in the context of its relation to repetition compulsion. The memories to be rediscovered during treatment are less important than the signs of temporality involved. The illusion of completely lifting infantile amnesia has given way to constructions in analysis. Historical truth, which is based on the beliefs organizing the psyche, is contrasted with material truth stripped of any embellishment. The essays in this volume complete the ideas put forward in “Time in Psychoanalysis – Some Contradictory Aspects”, its companion volume.

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