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Zinkin, L. (1991). The Klein Connection in the London School: The Search for Origins. J. Anal. Psychol., 36(1):37-62.

(1991). Journal of Analytical Psychology, 36(1):37-62

The Klein Connection in the London School: The Search for Origins

L. Zinkin, Mrc. Psych.

What is the origin of the archetypes? Though they would have to be thought of as having an existence before they exist in any individual, even though this pre-existence is hard to conceptualise, the question of origins can also be asked in the form: How do the archetypes come to exist within the individual? Jung's answer to this question was in terms of inheritance, though not in terms of the generally accepted notions of genetics. His view that there must be a collective unconscious from which individual consciousness arises, creates many problems, and if we concentrate on the life of the individual it is not easy to determine how the archetypes actually play their part in infantile life from the beginning. As with all inheritance, we know that there is a continuous interaction between the genes and the environment throughout the whole course of life, but at any stage it is difficult to determine what is cultural and what is laid down by the genes, and is therefore acultural, without invoking a Lamarckian theory of the inheritance of acquired characteristics. In the infant we need to be on the lookout for recognisable and repeated patterns. Even if these are clearly seen in the infant's behaviour they may or may not be in the infant's awareness.

In this paper, I shall re-address this question of origins in a way that is, I think, novel for analytical psychology because, at least in London, we have looked for answers by making links with psychoanalytic theories of infant development. These, until recently, have tended to disregard the findings of infant research. This is particularly true of Kleinian theories of unconscious fantasy, which have always been regarded as themselves somewhat fantastical by the majority of Freudians throughout the world.

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