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Donas, V.A. (2021). The Night of the Broken Mirrors. Psychoanal. Dial., 31(1):130-131.

(2021). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 31(1):130-131

The Night of the Broken Mirrors

Victor A. Donas, M.D.

One of the longest nights in history has finally ended. Though there may be a sigh of relief in many, the gesture sprouts along with a frown of preoccupation.

Present day fascism is far from the folkloric guise it took in the Twentieth Century. We have seen forms of neofascism infiltrated in our democracies through gaps in the law (as Agamben reminds us) and forced models of society, instilling non-ethical ways of conceiving human relations and the constitution as a subject. Thus, a pleat that became a psychic structure and determined our relation with alterity was shaped. In Chile and Latin America we have been foisted this pleat by US governments of the past.

History tends to be like a möbius strip, entangling foreclosed personal/collective experiences that are always reentering and redefining the experience of the here and now. When that occurs, a single event may shatter the house of mirrors we believed as truth. Today we find ourselves sharing the agony of alterity, living alongside in a house of broken mirrors.

In consonance with the events in the US, for Chilean people the time of realization came last October 25th, when the call for a new Constitution reignited our sense of democratic political subjects. An opening for destitution and re-Constitution. For the US, the experience of the Trump chapter may be the call to look at the shadows built-in the doxa of its democracy, which have prompted havoc in other countries as well.

A couple of years ago I borrowed the Deleuzian concept of microfascism to illustrate how these pleats can manifest in clinical practice.

[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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