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Serafini, B. (1991). Self-Awareness and Psychogenesis: Reflections on the Origins of Mental Life. Rivista Psicoanal., 37(3):598-622.

(1991). Rivista di Psicoanalisi, 37(3):598-622

Self-Awareness and Psychogenesis: Reflections on the Origins of Mental Life Language Translation

Bruno Serafini

1. A brief premise

In the course of my analytical work with male patients who manifest homosexual behaviour or homosexual phantasies I have come across symptoms, dreams, images and phantasies which have led me to reflect on the role of primary narcissism and the narcisistic experience in the formation of mental life and in the structuring of the mental apparatus. This study begins with an analysis of certain hypotheses concerning the relationship between the origins of the symbolizing function and the formation of the self and makes a few suggestions as to how the complex mind-body question might be examined more closely and at the same time more extensively. Narcissistic nuclei, which are closely connected with homosexuality whether manifested in behaviour or only in phantasies, have become the cardinal point in my considerations on the origins of mental life. As the nature of this paper is essentially theoretical, the sparse clinical fragments are to be understood as suggestions, highlighting the main body.

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