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Giustino, G. (2017). Further Developments of the Concept of Fantasy. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 98(3):831-839.

(2017). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 98(3):831-839

Further Developments of the Concept of Fantasy

Gabriella Giustino

(Accepted for publication 16 August 2016)

After the Isaacs' seminal work on the nature and function of unconscious phantasy (1948), several authors (mostly in the British Society) have reflected on the topic and tried to extend the concept of fantasy. In this paper I shall examine the contributions of Winnicott, Gaddini, Joseph and Anne Marie Sandler that aim at broadening this psychoanalytic concept. The authors that I have considered share a focus mostly on the early stages of child development. Both Winnicott and Gaddini belong to a line of thinking that explores the vicissitudes of the primary emotional development of the infantile self (in the mother-infant relationship) involving the earliest processes of holding and bodily and kinaesthetic fantasy that form the bodily integrity of the person. The Sandlers focused mostly on the concept of the past unconscious understood as a place of primitive vicissitudes with a deficit in figuration where the process of repression is missing. The present unconscious phantasy (that is located in the here and now) has the function of rendering the past unconscious phantasy partly accessible; otherwise it would remain unknowable.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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