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Tip: To sort articles by year…

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After you perform a search, you can sort the articles by Year. This will rearrange the results of your search chronologically, displaying the earliest published articles first. This feature is useful to trace the development of a specific psychoanalytic concept through time.

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Bourdin, D. (2009). La honte, ses figures et ses destins [Shame: Its Configurations and Vicissitudes] by Claude Janin PUF, Paris, “Le fil rouge”, 2007; 169 pp; €20. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 90(2):411-415.

(2009). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 90(2):411-415

La honte, ses figures et ses destins [Shame: Its Configurations and Vicissitudes] by Claude Janin PUF, Paris, “Le fil rouge”, 2007; 169 pp; €20

Review by:
Dominique Bourdin

In this book Claude Janin develops his ideas on a topic already adumbrated in a paper that he delivered to the Congress of French-speaking Psychoanalysts in Lyon in 2003. This new psychoanalytic study of shame highlights not only its clinical importance but also its metapsychological relevance. In a convincing and stimulating way, he sets out the various parameters of the notion of primary shame, with reference to Jean-Luc Donnet's 1993 paper Lord Jim ou la honte de vivre [Lord Jim or the shame of living] (a commentary on Joseph Conrad's novel, Lord Jim), in which he wrote: “An excessive degree of shame implies the refusal of any kind of shame, the refusal of everything that evokes original shame in us, as in a deferred action” (p. 223).

Janin's study of shame has its roots in his thoughts on the place of shame in our culture, on what becomes of the defensive aspects involved in it and on its implications for the present day. At the same time, he focuses on intrapsychic experience with respect both to the drives and to the object. Freud made a link between shame and the development of infantile sexuality; Ferenczi emphasized the part played by the object whenever shame emerges, thereby highlighting its narcissistic value.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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