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Ellonen-Jéquier, M. (2009). Analysis of the creation of ‘emptiness’, of ‘nothingness’, in certain types of psychosis. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 90(4):843-866.

(2009). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 90(4):843-866

Analysis of the creation of ‘emptiness’, of ‘nothingness’, in certain types of psychosis Language Translation

Mireille Ellonen-Jéquier

(Final version accepted 6 April 2009)

Some psychotic patients manage to create nothingness and emptiness thanks to the amount of work their ego accomplishes. That is the paradox we find in schizophrenic patients, their ego is simultaneously weak and powerful. When we analyse how this nothingness/emptiness is created, we enter into a strange world in which the patient's ego is, in part, defective and fragmented; his or her thinking apparatus, capacity for perceiving and feeling are under attack. Yet this same ego can call on intellectual ability, imagination and tremendous energy in order to create a highly complex structure, thanks to which the psychotic individual manages to create a kind of para-organization of space by splittingnothingness’ (the space between representations) and ‘density’ (a compact magma made up of many different highly-condensed representations). Both nothingness and density may give the impression that the patient is ‘nowhere to be found’ and therefore impossible to analyse. In this paper, I shall describe these mechanisms as they appear in the clinical material of a female psychotic patient.

[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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