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Wilson, E., Jr. (1984). Revue Française De Psychanalyse, XLIII. 1979: Oedipus: The Message of the Difference. Nicos Nicolaïdis. Pp. 409-419.. Psychoanal Q., 53:146-147.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Revue Française De Psychanalyse, XLIII. 1979: Oedipus: The Message of the Difference. Nicos Nicolaïdis. Pp. 409-419.

(1984). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 53:146-147

Revue Française De Psychanalyse, XLIII. 1979: Oedipus: The Message of the Difference. Nicos Nicolaïdis. Pp. 409-419.

Emmett Wilson, Jr.

It was the myth of Oedipus that helped Freud to liberate himself from the historical event and to reconstruct the history of desire, of fantasy life. History is an account of the events relating to certain peoples or to humanity in general. Myth is also an account, but it is symbolic, traditional, and constructed of selected events, memories, and screen memories of a people. It has a certain continuity of fantasy which gives structure to the desires of a group. This continuity in fantasy differs from the serial conjunction of events which characterizes history. Myth is on the same level as other unconscious formations, with libidinal value for a people, similar to fantasy, dreams, or delirium. Nonetheless, from Homer to Herodotus to our contemporary historians, there has been an inevitable confusion between myth and history. Nicolaïdis discusses

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the importance of writing in the reconstitution of an oral legend into a text with mythic significance. He illustrates this by considering the Oedipus myth as it appears in Sophocles. Subsequent treatment of the story by other writers has shown influences from their current psychological and historical situations. In Sophocles, however, the conjunction of events is subordinate to the fantasy and its structure. The structuralization given by Sophocles to the myth provides a moving message concerning the psychosexual evolution of the individual, and the message of the difference between the sexes and between the generations.

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Article Citation

Wilson, E., Jr. (1984). Revue Française De Psychanalyse, XLIII. 1979. Psychoanal. Q., 53:146-147

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