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Ikonen, P. (2010). Remarks on Affects and Feelings. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 33(2):106-112.

(2010). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 33(2):106-112

Remarks on Affects and Feelings

Pentti Ikonen

This paper discusses affects and feelings as either communicative or dynamic phenomena. An affect is a person's immediate evaluation of him- or herself in the world and at the same time a bodily act with all the consequences this entails. A feeling is a perception and a simultaneous evaluation of the affect. Although affects and feelings are self-evaluations, people are only partly able to control them. Affects are simultaneously experienced as existing in oneself and as external forces. When too disturbing, affects must be dissociated from conscious awareness and become a personal problem. Different cultures offer different remedies to such problems. The remedy offered by psychoanalysis is to help the person become aware of the dissociated psychic material, including both its informative and dynamic - conflict - aspects.

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