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ERIC Number: EJ834451
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Dec
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 33
ISSN: ISSN-0075-417X
Before the Threshold: Destruction, Reparation and Creativity in Relation to the Depressive Position
Edwards, Judith
Journal of Child Psychotherapy, v31 n3 p317-334 Dec 2005
In this paper, the author revisits the classic idea formulated by Hanna Segal that creativity takes place from a depressive position impulse to repair previous destruction wrought on internal parental objects. The author proposes that in the light of psychoanalytic work with deprived and borderline children, there may need to be a rider to this formulation. By suggesting the myths of Ariadne and Orpheus alongside that of Oedipus as aids to psychoanalytic understandings, a development is posited here which may coexist with or even precede depressive struggles. Dread and hope, the author suggests, accompany both the creative artist and the child on the path towards expression of creative impulses. Such impulses exist before a "depressive position" arrival point, or may follow it, in a cyclical rather than linear development, as Britton--drawing on Bion--suggested. This does not diminish the importance of reparation both in the individual psyche and in creative work, but makes space for the possibility of a preceding or perhaps co-existing stage. Intimations of this were already present in the work of Melanie Klein, but were not elaborated in the way suggested here, as will be indicated. The author illustrates this with her own clinical work, and proposes that similar processes may be at work in the evolution of psychoanalytic understandings. (Contains 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A