Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To save articles in ePub format for your eBook reader…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

To save an article in ePub format, look for the ePub reader icon above all articles for logged in users, and click it to quickly save the article, which is automatically downloaded to your computer or device. (There may be times when due to font sizes and other original formatting, the page may overflow onto a second page.).

You can also easily save to PDF format, a journal like printed format.

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

Nguyen, L. (2007). The Question of Survival: The Death of Desire and the Weight of Life. Am. J. Psychoanal., 67(1):53-67.

(2007). American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 67(1):53-67

The Question of Survival: The Death of Desire and the Weight of Life

Leanh Nguyen, Ph.D.

This article aims to document the psychic injuries of torture. Psychic deadness, erasure of intersubjectivity, refusal of meaning-making, perversion of agency, and an inability to bear desire constitute the core features of the post-traumatic landscape of torture. The existential challenges in traumatized lives is examined, and questions are also raised about the ethics and unconscious defensive functions of the term “survival.” Clinical materials with various torture patients are reported to explore the process of working through the losses and paradoxes of trauma. The role of unmourned loss and the defense of fetishizing the trauma are highlighted as the motivating force and the problem in the current preoccupation with trauma in modern Western culture.

[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.