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Rangell, L. (1967). Psychoanalysis, Affects, and the 'Human Core'—On the Relationship of Psychoanalysis to the Behavioral Sciences. Psychoanal Q., 36:172-202.

(1967). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 36:172-202

Psychoanalysis, Affects, and the 'Human Core'—On the Relationship of Psychoanalysis to the Behavioral Sciences

Leo Rangell, M.D.


In casting about for a central focus on the occasion of this fourth Franz Alexander Lecture, I found my interest coming back repeatedly to the unlikely sounding concept of the 'human core' as this appears to the psychoanalyst. Since this has been a central interest of philosophers and other commentators on the human condition from the beginning of time, and since even in modern times it represents one of the two polar extremes which challenge man's intellect—that is, outer space and the inner core of the human mind—I must at once make powerful disclaimers. Not only am I naturally limiting myself to how this subject of perennial interest looks to the psychoanalyst, but even in this latter category I hasten to add that I am not aspiring here to a statement that can claim any metapsychological comprehensiveness or scientific purity. In this brief view, I have selected only a few aspects of the subject which strike me as being of particular relevance.

By way of explanation and orientation, my interest in the 'core' stems from a recent period which I spent at what might be looked upon more as the periphery.

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