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Fayek, A. (2002). Psychic Reality and Mental Representation: Contemporary Misapplications of Freud's Concepts. Psychoanal. Psychol., 19(3):475-500.

(2002). Psychoanalytic Psychology, 19(3):475-500

Psychic Reality and Mental Representation: Contemporary Misapplications of Freud's Concepts

Ahmed Fayek, Ph.D.

The meanings of the 2 interrelated concepts of psychic reality and mental representation have changed radically lately under the influence of the prevailing empirico-pragmatic epistemology in psychoanalysis. The concepts, at present, are not different in meaning from the academic psychologist's concept of perception and imaging. The original Freudian concepts were dealing with indosomatic stimuli and not with the stimuli of the external world. A review and discussion of the emergence of the 2 concepts in Freud's theory lead to the realization that psychoanalysis has, and still is, developing along radically different—if not even opposite—epistemologies to that of Freudian psychoanalysis. Keeping track of the original connotations of psychoanalytic concepts puts the new changes in perspective.

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