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De Bianchedi, E.T. Scalozub De Boschan, L. De Cortiñas, L.P. De Piccolo, E.G. (1988). Theories on Anxiety in Freud and Melanie Klein. Their Metapsychological Status. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 69:359-368.

(1988). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 69:359-368

Theories on Anxiety in Freud and Melanie Klein. Their Metapsychological Status

Elizabeth T. De Bianchedi, Lidia Scalozub De Boschan, Lia. P. De Cortiñas and Elsa G. De Piccolo


This paper presents a comparative study of the theories on anxiety formulated by Freud and Melanie Klein, with particular emphasis on the questions of its origin, its meaning for the individual and its function in both theoretical systems. The purpose of this comparative analysis is to offer an instrument which helps frame the theoretical discussions in psychoanalysis in an epistemological context. The authors hold that for Freud anxiety is considered as one more amongst the various manifestations of mental life, which his general theories try to explain, whereas for Melanie Klein anxiety and its destinies occupies a central place in her theories on mental functioning. The differences in both theories, which the authors of this paper describe, especially as to origin, function and meaning of anxiety, respond partially to the different metapsychological points of view with which both authors focus mental life—points of view which they have themselves investigated in a previous paper.

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