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Chatterji, A. (2009). “Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious” and D.W. Winnicotts Transitional and Related Phenomena. Psychoanal. Rev., 96(5):785-800.

(2009). Psychoanalytic Review, 96(5):785-800

“Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious” and D.W. Winnicotts Transitional and Related Phenomena

Arindam Chatterji, Ph.D.

The British novelist D. H. Lawrence's long essay “Pyschoanalysis and the Unconscious” was published in 1921. The British psychoanalyst D. W. Winnicott's paper “Transitional Objects and Transitional Phenomena” was published in 1951, exactly thirty years later, followed by the publication of “Ego Distortions in Terms of the True and False self in 1960 and “The Use of an Object and Relating through Identifications” in 1969. This paper shall investigate these works of both writers with the principal intent of demonstrating that they share fundamental conceptual affinities, and that both Lawrence and Winnicott gave a healthy new direction to psychoanalysis, although each one used his own distinctive idiom in making his psychoanalytic contribution.

Sympathetic-Voluntary Relating and Transitional Phenomena

Derisive laughter met the publication of D. H. Lawrence's “Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious” in 1921 (Rieff, 1960). The notoriety he had earned with the publication of his major novels, The Rainbow (1915) and Women in Love (written in 1916 and only published privately at first in the United States in 1921), was still to die down. He was in the eyes of his erstwhile close friend, and at that moment England's foremost literary critic, John Middleton Murry (1921), a renegade artist or an “outlaw of modern English Literature” (p. 168) who ought to be banished from the mainstream of English culture and tradition.

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