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Bazan, A. (2013). Repression as the Condition for Consciousness. Neuropsychoanalysis, 15(1):20-24.

(2013). Neuropsychoanalysis, 15(1):20-24


Repression as the Condition for Consciousness Related Papers

Commentary by Ariane Bazan

Mark Solms makes a convincing case for the subcortical structures as consciousness-inducing instances, and the audacious logical consequence that therefore the Freudian id is conscious makes sense. However, in his understanding of this conscious id, affect and drive are conceptually confused and a brain-based view of affect, drive, and pleasure altogether is defended. My first aim is to stress the importance of understanding the drive—the vector between an internal body regulatory imbalance and an external body motor response—as an acquired link, for which the criterion is first given by pleasure, produced by a release of tension when an internal body need is alleviated. Moreover, I question the representational nature of this primary subjective consciousness, and I propose that the constitutive contribution of the neocortex to consciousness is not so much memory space than the process of inhibition—or repression. This enables the distinction between a mental and a perceived object and consequent action-selection and, in the process of doing so, generates representations and “solidifies” objects.

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