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Minonne, G. (2020). Commentary on Evzonas. Psychoanal. Inq., 40(8):657-658.

(2020). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 40(8):657-658

Commentary on Evzonas

Giovanni Minonne, Ph.D.

Nicolas Evzonas’s article builds on the seminal work of Jean Laplanche, and on the contribution of feminist, gender and “race” studies to explores how the individual unconscious of a child is infiltrated by cultural messages of social oppression regarding gender and “race”, through unconscious overwhelming and enigmatic interactions between children and their caregivers.

Following Laplanche, the author suggests that social prescriptions are inscribed in the child’s unconscious by “seducing caregivers” (p. 636) in forms “which are contaminated by the adult’s drive-fueled and overknowing unconscious”, and are “enigmatic for both the sender and the receiver” (p. 636). The author questions the traditional view of biology as destiny and shows how social dynamics of dominance and oppression are at the very core of the interpersonal construction of sexual differences from biological diversities, and the polymorphous sexual explorations of the child. He then explores how ideas of racial and social inferiority are also intruded in the child by significant others.

The author shows how the practice of caregiving is intruded by parental enigmatic messages and suggests that these intrusions might express the parents’ insufficient elaboration of their own traumatic inscription in a culture of power and abuse. The child experiences these messages as enigmas that need to be resolved, and/or as overwhelming unthinkable introjects.

[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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