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Battin, D. Mahon, E. (2009). Seeing the Light. Psychoanal Q., 78(1):107-122.

(2009). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 78(1):107-122

Seeing the Light

Delia Battin and Eugene Mahon

Seeing the light is an expression that usually connotes a conceptual grasp of meaning in all its complexity, while the perception of light is not the issue. In this paper, the authors present a patient with an exquisite light sensitivity that disturbs her sleep; she is “seeing the light” in a symptomatic, concrete way. Light itself has become a compliant and collusive element onto which an aspect of conflict is displaced in the service of self-deception. Ironically, the analysis and deconstruction of the symptom eventually led to the kind of insight that the expression seeing the light conveys.

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