Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To sort articles by Rank…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

You can specify Rank as the sort order when searching (it’s the default) which will put the articles which best matched your search on the top, and the complete results in descending relevance to your search. This feature is useful for finding the most important articles on a specific topic.

You can also change the sort order of results by selecting rank at the top of the search results pane after you perform a search. Note that rank order after a search only ranks up to 1000 maximum results that were returned; specifying rank in the search dialog ranks all possibilities before choosing the final 1000 (or less) to return.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Kernberg, O.F. (2000). “Mourning and Melancholia” Eighty Years Later. Changing Ideas In A Changing World: The Revolution in Psychoanalysis. Essays in Honour of Arnold Cooper, 95-102.

Kernberg, O.F. (2000). “Mourning and Melancholia” Eighty Years Later. Changing Ideas In A Changing World: The Revolution in Psychoanalysis. Essays in Honour of Arnold Cooper, 95-102

“Mourning and Melancholia” Eighty Years Later Book Information Previous Up Next

Otto F. Kernberg, M.D.

Mourning and Melancholia” is Freud's (1917e) first and fundamental contribution to the psychoanalytic understanding of normal and pathological mourning, the psychopathology of major affective disorders, and the psychodynamic determinants of depression. At the same time, it also marks major developments in psychoanalytic theory at large, particularly the early formulations of the concept of the superego, the fundamental nature of identification processes, and the role of aggression in psychopathology. There are several strikingly original and fundamental propositions in the theory of the psychopathology of depression put forth in “Mourning and Melancholia”. These include the central importance of aggression turned against the self when intensely ambivalent object investments are lost; the role of the superego in this self-directed aggression; the split in the self revealed in the superego's attack on the ego; and the fusion of another part of the self with an internalized object as the victim of that attack.

In what follows, I shall attempt to provide an overview of the development of Freud's ground-breaking discoveries regarding depression and identification in “Mourning and Melancholia”, and how these ideas are reflected in our current psychoanalytic understanding of depression and of identification and its central role in the build-up of psychic structures.

First, regarding the contemporary theory of depression, I believe that the contributions of Karl Abraham (1924), Melanie Klein (1940), Edward Bibring (1953), and Edith Jacobson (1971) permit us to formulate a contemporary psychoanalytic theory of depression.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2020, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.