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CHAPTER SEVEN: Reflections on the making of a terrorist

Jean Arundale Karnac Books ePub

Stuart W. Twemlow and Frank C. Sacco

“Listen children, your father is dead. From his old coats I will make you little jackets. I’ll make you little trousers from his old pants. There’ll be in his pockets, things he used to put there. Keys and pennies covered with tobacco. Dan shall have the pennies to save in his bank. Ann shall have the keys to make a pretty noise with. Life must go on and the dead be forgotten. Life must go on, though good men die. Ann eat your breakfast, Dan take your medicine. Life must go on. I forgot just why.”

“Lament”, by Edna St. Vincent Millay

Introduction

Keeping life going on somehow preoccupies the minds of virtually every American since September 11th, when more people died in a single incident than in any other non-wartime period in U.S. history and still countless others continue to lament the loss of loved ones. In this paper, we will outline an approach to an evolving understanding of social activism, fanaticism, and its potential progression to martyrdom and terrorism. In the necessary painful self-examination that is being undertaken by Americans, we offer some thoughts on social context as a crucible for the making of a terrorist.

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Chapter Three: Sexuality and the analytic couple

Jean Arundale Karnac Books ePub

Viqui Rosenberg

“The darkest place, according to a Chinese proverb, is always underneath the lamp.”

(Barthes, 1979, p. 59)

In the Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality (1905d), Freud postulated the centrality of infantile sexuality in the structuring of the human psyche, describing sexuality as a pleasure-seeking instinctual energy. Admittedly, he was expanding the concept of sexuality to define

a whole range of excitations and activities which may be observed from infancy onwards and which procure a pleasure that cannot be adequately explained in terms of the satisfaction of a basic physiological need (respiration, hunger, excretory function, etc.). [Laplanche & Pontalis, 1985, p. 418]

As it was for Freud's readers then, nowadays we continue to struggle to accept that there is a connection of a sexual nature between the baby nursing at the breast, thumb-sucking, the complex vicissitudes of anality, childhood and adolescent masturbation, and adult sexual life. Many of these activities, being as they are an integral part of universal human experience, are often surrounded by secrecy, apprehension, shame, and even repulsion. Recognition of these early experiences as generating from, and expressing, our sexual life helps us to get the measure of this instinctual force, but this recognition would not be complete without the understanding that sexuality is always curtailed by the necessity to engage with others, and that, retrospectively, we experience sexual excitement from a perspective illuminated by the Oedipal dilemma. That is to say, sexuality is always linked to a sense of loss and absence, and the fantasy of sexual fulfilment inevitably leads to the notion of prohibition and guilt. Furthermore, with the question, “where do I come from?,” the child faces the fact that there is a sexual relationship at the beginning of each life (Green, 1995, p. 880; Laplanche, 1999, p. 171) and, with this knowledge, the painful reality of exclusion from that original union.

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Chapter Eight: Two impulses to end an analysis: exploring the transference and countertransference

Jean Arundale Karnac Books ePub

Philip Roys

During the course of an analysis, it is not uncommon for patients to suggest or demand an end to the work. The topic of ending may be introduced explicitly or may be referred to indirectly or unconsciously. This chapter is concerned with the question of how the analyst might make sense of, and respond to, such developments.

The ending of analysis can, on the one hand, promote a recognition of separateness and the possibility of fuller involvement with the external world, allowing analytic achievements to be consolidated and further developed. Alternatively, ending can permit an escape from the possibility of facing painful conflicts and dilemmas. The impulse to end, therefore, contains both developmental and defensive possibilities.

In forming a view as to whether, in a particular case, it is the developmental or the defensive aspects which predominate, the literature concerning the criteria for analytic termination may be consulted. This literature refers to external functioning (e.g., Klein, 1950) or symptomatic relief (Freud, 1937c), but, as one would expect, most authors place greater emphasis on the achievement of analytic and internal goals. These are considered in terms such as the predominant defensive constellation or level of psychic development (Klein, 1950, the balance towards depressive rather than paranoid–schizoid functioning being regarded as developmentally more advanced), or the internalization of an analytic capacity. Pedder (1988) and Schacter (1992), for example, both stress the importance of this latter achievement to enable the patient to negotiate future life challenges.

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Chapter Nine: The elusive concept of analytic survival

Jean Arundale Karnac Books ePub

Ruth Berkowitz

“At least you survived,” said a colleague following my presentation at a weekly clinic meeting of a session with an extremely difficult patient. This seemingly ordinary comment stayed in my mind. The notion of analytic survival is one of those terms in common psychoanalytic currency, and it is as though we all know and understand the meaning. Trying to put aside the idea that only I did not know and understand the meaning, I thought on. How has the term been used? How has it been understood? If analytic survival has some importance in our work, in what way does it affect the patient? I considered my own clinical work, and wondered whether the experience of analytic survival was the same with each patient or whether it differed according to the nature and extent of the psychopathology and, if different, how the experience might differ.

The term “survival” is associated mainly with the work of Winnicott and his seminal paper, “The use of an object and relating through identifications” (1971). In this paper, he highlights the importance of destruction, adding that this word is needed “because of the object's liability not to survive, which also means to suffer change in quality in attitude” (p. 109). He asks again (Winnicott, Shepherd, & Davies, 1989), does the object survive; that is, does it retain its character or does it react? A further question, then, is how, since Winnicott's time, has the understanding of survival altered?

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CHAPTER SIX: The psychodynamic dimension of terrorism

Jean Arundale Karnac Books ePub

Salman Akhtar

Like a psychosocial smallpox, eruptions of terrorism are scattered all over the skin of today’s world. These range from the chronic violent strife between Catholics and Protestants in Ireland to the sudden shock of the World Trade Centre bombing in New York City; from the continuing Israeli-Arab bloodshed in the Middle East to the horror of the explosion at Oklahoma’s Murrah Federal Building, and from the religiously sanctified suicide bombings by the Lebanese Hezbollah to the violent tactics of the Basque liberation organisation, Euzkadi Ta Azkatasura. The complexities underlying these phenomena are profound. Understanding them would necessitate a multidisciplin-ary approach with contributions from the perspectives of history, political science, economics, religion, social anthropology, and psychology. Although it is acknowledged that multilayered socio economic factors contribute to the emergence of terrorism, this article focuses on the psychological dimension of terrorism.

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