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After you perform a search, you can sort the articles by Source. This will rearrange the results of your search, displaying articles according to their appearance in journals and books. This feature is useful for tracing psychoanalytic concepts in a specific psychoanalytic tradition.

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Charles, M. (2015). Fragmenting Foundations. Ann. Psychoanal., 38:105-118.

(2015). Annual of Psychoanalysis, 38:105-118

Fragmenting Foundations

Marilyn Charles, Ph.D.

Primary experience lodges in our bodies. Over time, we learn to make sense of our perceptions and apperceptions, telling ourselves stories that best fit the “facts” of our lives as we experience them. These stories are refined over time in ways that seem to work for us, but there are also moments when the story and lived experience become sufficiently disparate that we stumble. At such times, psychoanalytic psychotherapy offers a relational context in which to try to understand this stumbling such that we might perhaps stumble a bit less in future. This stumbling marks a gap, thereby providing an important clue to information that may be inaccessible to the conscious mind (Lacan, 1977; Charles, 2012). Often, it is through the dream that we begin to glimpse the disparities between the story being told and the lived experience (Charles, 2010).

Traumatic experience, like very early experience, is not easily encoded into language and tends to be relatively inaccessible to conscious, rational awareness. Such experience, however, lodges in us (McDougall, 1989), inscribing meanings that become a “language of the body” (Charles, 2002) speaking to us directly in ways that might be useful if we can heed the signals. In psychoanalytic psychotherapy, the clinician is always listening with two minds. the conscious mind listens to the narrative as it unfolds, whereas the less conscious registers of primary process resonate to nonverbal communications that may not be accessible to conscious awareness.

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