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Puget, J. (1995). Psychic Reality Or Various Realities. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 76:29-34.

(1995). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 76:29-34

Psychic Reality Or Various Realities

Janine Puget

The panoramic revision of the concept of ‘psychic reality’ opens up numerous lines of analysis. I have chosen here to study it as an entity under permanent construction and to distinguish qualitative differences within it, according to whether it comes from a singular instinctive reality or a reality common to two or more people. When the quality of the reality comes from the socio-cultural context it presents some specific technical difficulties, given that patients and analyst belong to the same context and their ethical judgements arise from that context, and not only from theory.

Psychic reality: a construction

Psychic reality is a theoretical term in psychoanalysis and forms part of those concepts which, although they bring us together, include a maximum of ambiguity, which can lead both to a fertile scientific exchange and to a state of Babel. Perhaps for this reason we can meet here in an attempt to clarify our misunderstandings or strengthen our divergences (Bernardi, 1993; Grünbaum, 1993; Kernberg, 1993; Schafer, 1993; Wallerstein, 1988, 1990).

Traditionally, psychic reality is related to a reality which is individual, fantastic, thought, desired, subjective, unreal, hallucinated, unknowable and internal to the psychic apparatus construed by each psyche, and is therefore opposed to the reality which is common, general, social, true, material, imposed, objective, realistic, knowable and external, the latter being generalisable and even universal.

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