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Jiménez, J.P. (2004). A psychoanalytical phenomenology of perversion. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 85(1):65-81.

(2004). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 85(1):65-81

A psychoanalytical phenomenology of perversion Language Translation

Juan Pablo Jiménez

After stating that the current tasks of psychoanalytic research should fundamentally include the exploration of the analyst's mental processes in sessions with the patient, the author describes the analytical relation as one having an intersubjective nature. Seen from the outside, the analytical relation evidences two poles: a symmetric structural pole where both analyst and patient share a single world and a single approach to reality, and a functional asymmetric pole that defines the assignment of the respective roles. In the analysis of a perverse patient, the symmetry-asymmetry polarities acquire some very particular characteristics. Seen from the perspective of the analyst's subjectivity, perversion appears in the analyst's mind as a surreptitious and unexpected transgression of the basic agreement that facilitates and structures intersubjective encounters. It may go as far as altering the Aristotelian rules of logic. When coming into contact with the psychic reality of a perverse patient, what happens in the analyst's mind is that a world takes shape. This world is misleadingly coloured by an erotisation that sooner or later will acquire some characteristics of violence. The perverse nucleus, as a false reality, remains dangling in mid-air as an experience that is inaccessible to the analyst's empathy. The only way the analyst can reach it is from the ‘periphery’ of the patient's psychic reality, by trying in an indirect way to lead him back to his intersubjective roots. At this point, the author's intention is to explain this intersubjective phenomenon in terms of metapsychological and empirical research-based theories. Finally, some ideas on the psychogenesis of perversion are set forth.

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