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Wrangsjö, B. (2011). DET FRÄMMANDE, DET KUSLIGA OCH TANKENS BRIST. DET ANALOGA, DET DIGITALA OCH HOMO PSYCHICUS [The Unknown, the Uncanny and the Deficit of Thought. The Analogue, the Digital and Homo Psychicus] By Alf Nilsson. Mölndal: Symposium 2011. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 34(2):144-146.

(2011). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 34(2):144-146

DET FRÄMMANDE, DET KUSLIGA OCH TANKENS BRIST. DET ANALOGA, DET DIGITALA OCH HOMO PSYCHICUS [The Unknown, the Uncanny and the Deficit of Thought. The Analogue, the Digital and Homo Psychicus] By Alf Nilsson. Mölndal: Symposium 2011

Review by:
Björn Wrangsjö

Alf Nilsson, Professor Emeritus of Clinical Psychology, Lund University, Sweden, now publishes his third book summarizing his professional knowledge and experience on the rise of mental man. In the first book “The Rise of Homo Psychicus - a biopsychological phantasy” [Om Homo psychicus uppkomst - en biopsykologisk fantasi], he put affects, cognition and language into an evolutionary, psychological, and biological developmental perspective. In his second book “New perspectives on the unconscious: a psychic system between the touch of hand and emotion” [Dei omedvetna i nya perspektiv: ett psykiskt system mellan handens och känslans beröring], he elucidated the unconscious as a system from an evolutionary and developmental psychological perspective, confirming and discussing some of Freud's findings.

The frame of reference of his new book, as well as of the the two earlier books, is the evolutionary and ontogenetic development of the child. He points out that his approach is theoretical and that there seems to be an endpoint or an aim of each theory that he addresses. Language, for example, stretches itself towards the not yet verbalized experience of reality. With mathematics as a language, structures are revealed long before they are discovered in physics. An underlying dimension in Nilsson's presentation is the difference between the analogical and the digital, which parallels the symmetric and the asymmetric as discussed by Ignatio Matte-Blanco.

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