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Letarte, P. (2020). Considérations sur la vie et sur la mort. Rev. fr. psychanal., 84(4):971-975.

(2020). Revue française de psychanalyse, 84(4):971-975

Considérations sur la vie et sur la mort

(Thoughts on Life and Death)

Paulette Letarte

Drawing on her surprise at noticing her own unconscious ignorance of death, the author emphasizes just how much death is absent from the unconscious, in children generally, but also in a suicidal patient. She illustrates this duality of conscious knowledge and unconscious ignorance of death through her conversations with a very old lady of 96, in whom she rekindled the project of becoming the centenarian of the district. The depressive movement that was making her resign herself to her lot was gradually replaced during the course of the sessions to a solid will to live. We cannot see the trace of the shadow of the “death drive” in this example.

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