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Lenormand, M. (2020). Hans, Sammy, Richard et les autres. Rev. fr. psychanal., 84(1):75-86.

(2020). Revue française de psychanalyse, 84(1):75-86

Hans, Sammy, Richard et les autres

(Hans, Sammy, Richard, Dominique, Carine, Gabrielle and the others)

Marie Lenormand

In this article, the author evokes the “enfants terribles” that are Hans, Sammy, Richard, Dominique, Carine, Gabrielle and the others, those children that have given rise to famous psychoanalytic case histories, in order to examine the extent to which they are capable of constituting “model children” for psychoanalysis. This approach is a way of stepping back from the controversy, still lively today, that divides the psychoanalytic community on the subject of the epistemological status of the child as a model. Rather than examining the theoretical and heuristic status of the “child of reality” with regard to the Freudian invention of the “infantile”, the author examines the status of “model” that these singular child cases are led to play for the theory, but also for psychoanalytic practice. It shows the extent to which the “models” they offer can only prove to be incomplete and aporetic. Paradoxically, it is precisely this failure that makes them exemplary.

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