Imagination from Fantasy to Delusion

Author: Lois Oppenheim
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 0415875706
Format: PDF
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In Imagination from Fantasy to Delusion, Lois Oppenheim illustrates the enhancement of self that creativity affords, the relationship of imagination to the self as agent. The premise of this book is twofold: First, that the imaginary is real. Where it differs from what we commonly take to be reality is in structure and in form. The imaginary of art, for example, is not illusionary for it is phenomenologically describable and even depictable, as demonstrated by the self-reflexive efforts of modernist painters and writers. No less real than the imaginary of art, and thus fantasy, is the imaginary of delusion, ascertainable in the very function it serves. Though fundamentally different, fantasy and delusion do share a significant feature: a preoccupation with agency. Second is that change, the enhancement of self through an increase in agency, is facilitated by the biology of reward: The pleasure of increased self-cohesion—the efficacy acquired through knowledge of, and the attribution of meaning to, the world—is ultimately the sine qua non of imaginative thought. Oppenheim emphasizes the idea that imagination generates knowledge. Our sensory systems, like our higher cognitive functions, give the human brain knowledge to maintain the homeostatic balance required for survival and to enrich the sense of self required for agency. And, she suggests, imagination is a function of their doing so. Moreover, she explores the construct by which we apprehend the workings of imagination—fantasy—and considers in what the mental imagery that endows it consists, how fantasy may be transmitted transgenerationally, and how delusion can be an impediment to imagination while also being a product of it. Additionally, she likens psychoanalysis to the making of art as a process of acquiring knowledge and looks at creativity itself as a coming-to-know. Throughout this book, there run several opposing threads. The first is that of the intra- and interpsychic psychoanalytic paradigms. This theoretical contrast bears on our understanding of aesthetic experience as sublimatory versus object relational and on our understanding of the construction of meaning. A second opposition resides in the notion of agency (with its implication of self-cohesion) which has everything to do with ego function and, seemingly, the usefulness of "unconscious fantasy," a cornerstone of psychoanalysis now thrown into question by the postmodern favoring of dissociation over repression and other mechanisms of defense. Last, but no less significant, is the contrast interwoven between the empiricism of neuroscience and the metaphysics of philosophical thought. Oppenheim's underlying effort is to explore the validity of these oppositions, which seem not to hold as steadfastly as we tend to suppose.

Psychoanalysis and the Artistic Endeavor

Author: Lois Oppenheim
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317589548
Format: PDF, Docs
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Psychoanalysis and the Artistic Endeavor offers an intriguing window onto the creative thinking of several well-known and highly creative individuals. Internationally renowned writers, painters, choreographers, and others converse with the author about their work and how it has been informed by their life experience. Creative process frames the discussions, but the topics explored are wide-ranging and the interrelation of the personal and professional development of these artists is what comes to the fore. The conversations are unique in providing insight not only into the art at hand and into the perspective of each artist on his or her own work, but into the mind from which the work springs. The interviews are lively in a way critical writing by its very nature is not, rendering the ideas all that much more accessible. The transcription of the live interview reveals the kind of reflection censored elsewhere, the interplay of personal experience and creative process that are far more self-consciously shaped in a text written for print. Neither private conversation nor public lecture, neither crafted response (as to the media) nor freely associative discourse (as in the analytic consulting room), these interviews have elements of all. The volume guides the reader toward a deeper psychologically oriented understanding of literary and visual art, and it engages the reader in the honest and often-provocative revelations of a number of fascinating artists who pay testimony to their work in a way no one else can. This is a unique collection of particular interest for psychoanalysts, scholars, and anyone looking for a deeper understanding of the creative process.

Love and Loss in Life and in Treatment

Author: Linda B. Sherby
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 113682880X
Format: PDF, Docs
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Have you ever wondered what a therapist really thinks? Have you ever wondered if a therapist truly cares about her patients? Have you tried to imagine the unimaginable, the loss of the person most dear to you? Is it true that `tis better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all? ` Love and loss are a ubiquitous part of life, bringing the greatest joys and the greatest heartaches. In one way or another all relationships end. People leave, move on, die. Loss is an ever-present part of life. In Love and Loss, Linda B. Sherby illustrates that in order to grow and thrive, we must learn to mourn, to move beyond the person we have lost while taking that person with us in our minds. Love, unlike loss, is not inevitable but, she argues, no satisfying life can be lived without deeply meaningful relationships. The focus of Love and Loss is how patients' and therapists' independent experiences of love and loss, as well as the love and loss that they experience in the treatment room, intermingle and interact. There are always two people in the consulting room, both of whom are involved in their own respective lives, as well as the mutually responsive relationship that exists between them. Love and loss in the life of one of the parties affects the other, whether that affect takes place on a conscious or unconscious level. Love and Loss is unique in two respects.The first is its focus on the analyst's current life situation and how that necessarily affects both the patient and the treatment. The second is Sherby's willingness to share the personal memoir of her own loss which she has interwoven with extensive clinical material to clearly illustrate the effect the analyst's current life circumstance has on the treatment. Writing as both a psychoanalyst and a widow, Linda B. Sherby makes it possible for the reader to gain an inside view of the emotional experience of being an analyst, making this book of interest to a wide audience. Professionals from psychoanalysts and psychotherapists and bereavement specialists through students in all the mental health fields to the public in general, will resonate and learn from this heartfelt and straightforward book.

The Fantasy Principle

Author: Michael Vannoy Adams
Publisher: Psychology Press
ISBN: 9781583918180
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Contemporary psychoanalysis needs less reality and more fantasy; what Michael Vannoy Adams calls the 'fantasy principle'. The Fantasy Principle radically affirms the centrality of imagination. It challenges us to exercise and explore the imagination, shows us how to value vitally important images that emerge from the unconscious, how to evoke such images, and how to engage them decisively. It shows us how to apply Jungian techniques to interpret images accurately and to experience images immediately and intimately through what Jung calls 'active imagination'. The Fantasy Principle makes a strong case for a new school of psychoanalysis - the school of 'imaginal psychology' - which emphasizes the transformative impact of images. All those who desire to give individuals an opportunity to become more imaginative will find this book fascinating reading.

Imaginary Existences

Author: Ignes Sodre
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317644689
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Imaginary Existences: A psychoanalytic exploration of phantasy, fiction, dreams and daydreams interweaves scholarly psychoanalytic knowledge and extensive clinical experience with insights derived from close readings of great literature in a uniquely imaginative and creative manner, convincingly demonstrating how these two ways of thinking – psychoanalysis and literary criticism – organically relate to each other. This is simultaneously a psychoanalytic book and a book about literature, illuminating the imaginative possibilities present within both the psychoanalytic encounter and the act of reading fiction. Scholarly and well researched, the psychoanalytic ideas presented have their basis in the work of Freud and Klein and some of their followers; the extensive and innovative writing about the great authors in Western literature is equally scholarly and lucent. Here, Ignês Sodré explores creativity itself and, specifically, the impediments to creative thinking: defences, mostly narcissistic, against dependency, guilt and loss, and the mis-use of imagination to deny reality. In her studies of the characters created by authors such as George Eliot, Cervantes, Flaubert, Thomas Mann, Proust and Shakespeare, Sodré examines the way great writers create characters who mis-use their imagination, twisting reality into romantic daydreams or sado-masochistic enactments, which petrify experience and freeze the fluidity of thought. Her clinical studies continue and expand this theme, broadening the field and lending verification and weight to the arguments. These two poles of Sodré’s thinking – psychoanalysis and literature – interact seamlessly in Imaginary Existences; the two disciplines work together, each an intimate part of a learned exploration of the human condition: our desires, our fears and our delusions. This convergence pays tribute to the great depth of the fictional work being studied and to the psychological validity of the psychoanalytic ideas. This book will be of interest to psychoanalysts, psychologists, psychotherapists, literary critics, and those interested in literature and literary criticism.

Belief and Imagination

Author: Ronald Britton
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134649142
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Winner of the 2013 Sigourney Award! Belief and Imagination brings together Ronald Britton's writing on these subjects over the last 15 years, exploring the concepts from a Kleinian perspective. The book covers: The status of phantasies in an individuals mind - are they facts or possibilities? How the notions of objectivity and subjectivity are interrelated and have their origins in the Oedipal triangle How phantasies which are held to be products of the imagination, can be accounted for in psychoanalytic terms. Britton also examines the relationship between psychic reality and fictional writing, and the ways in which belief, imagination and reality are explored in the works of Wordsworth, Rilke, Milton and Blake.

Missing Out

Author: Adam Phillips
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 1429949538
Format: PDF, Mobi
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A transformative book about the lives we wish we had and what they can teach us about who we are All of us lead two parallel lives: the one we are actively living, and the one we feel we should have had or might yet have. As hard as we try to exist in the moment, the unlived life is an inescapable presence, a shadow at our heels. And this itself can become the story of our lives: an elegy to unmet needs and sacrificed desires. We become haunted by the myth of our own potential, of what we have in ourselves to be or to do. And this can make of our lives a perpetual falling-short. But what happens if we remove the idea of failure from the equation? With his flair for graceful paradox, the acclaimed psychoanalyst Adam Phillips suggests that if we accept frustration as a way of outlining what we really want, satisfaction suddenly becomes possible. To crave a life without frustration is to crave a life without the potential to identify and accomplish our desires. In this elegant, compassionate, and absorbing book, Phillips draws deeply on his own clinical experience as well as on the works of Shakespeare and Freud, of D. W. Winnicott and William James, to suggest that frustration, not getting it, and and getting away with it are all chapters in our unlived lives—and may be essential to the one fully lived.

A Curious Intimacy

Author: Lois Oppenheim
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 113584299X
Format: PDF
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What can neuroscience contribute to the psychodynamic understanding of creativity and the imagination? A Curious Intimacy is an innovative study into the interrelation between art and neuro-psychoanalysis which significantly narrows the divide between the humanities and the sciences. Situating our grasp of the creative mind within the historical context of theories of sublimation, Lois Oppenheim proposes a change in paradigm for the study of the creative process, questioning the idea that creativity serves, above all, the reparation of early object relationships and the resolution of conflict. The book is divided into two parts. Part One, Art and the Brain, introduces the field of neuro-psychoanalysis and examines the contribution it can make to the discussion of gender and art. Part Two, A New Direction for Interdisciplinary Psychoanalysis, draws on the verbal and visual artistry of Samuel Beckett, Paul Klee and Martha Graham to put to the test the proposed new direction for applied psychoanalysis. Lois Oppenheim concludes by addressing the future of psychoanalysis as it becomes increasingly informed by neuroscience and raising questions about what the neurobiology of emotion and feeling has to tell us about the creative experience of an individual and what might constitute a 'neuro-psychoanalytic aesthetics'. A Curious Intimacy will have great appeal for all those interested in the study of imagination and creativity. It will also be of particular interest to students across the humanities and sciences and to psychotherapists and psychoanalysts wanting to explore the contribution that neuro-psychoanalysis can make to our understanding of the creative process.

The Power of Human Imagination

Author: Jerome L. Singer
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 1461339413
Format: PDF, Mobi
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For at least half of the twentieth century, psychology and the other mental health professions all but ignored the significant adaptive pos sibilities of the human gift of imagery. Our capacity seemingly to duplicate sights, sounds, and other sensory experiences through some form of central brain process continues to remain a mysterious, alma st miraculous skill. Because imagery is so much a private experience, experimental psychologists found it hard to measure and turned their attentian to observable behaviors that could easily be studied in ani maIs as well as in humans. Psychoanalysts and others working with the emotionally disturbed continued to take imagery informatian se riously in the form of dream reports, transferenee fantasies, and as indications of hallucinations or delusions. On the whole, however, they emphasized the maladaptive aspects of the phenomena, the dis tortions and defensiveness or the "regressive" qualities of daydreams and sequences of images. The present volume grows out of a long series of investigations by the senior author that have suggested that daydreaming and the stream of consciousness are not simply manifestations in adult life of persist ing phenomena of childhood. Rather, the data suggest that imagery sequences represent a major system of encoding and transforming information, a basic human capacity that is inevitably part of the brain's storage process and one that has enormous potential for adap tive utility. A companian volume, The Stream of Consciousness, edited by Kenneth S. Pope and Jerome L.

The Violence of Interpretation

Author: Piera Aulagnier
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134561229
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Published in English for the first time, this is a seminal work by an original and creative analytical thinker. Piera Aulagnier's The Violence of Interpretation bridges the work of Winnicott and Lacan, putting forward a theory of psychosis based on children's early experiences. The author's analysis of the relationship between the other's communications and the infant's psychic experience. and of the pre-verbal stage of development of unconscious fantasy starting from the 'pictogram', have fundamental implications for the psychoanalytic theory of development. She developed Lacan's ideas to enable the treatment of severe psychotic states. Containing detailed discussion of clinical material, and written in the author's precise yet provocative style, The Violence of Interpretation is a welcome addition to the New Library of Psychoanalysis.