Download Aboriginal Populations in the Mind. Race and Primitivity in by Celia Brickman PDF

By Celia Brickman

What half does racial distinction play in psychoanalysis? What might be discovered whilst contemplating this query from a postcolonial point of view? during this refined and commanding research, Celia Brickman explores how the colonialist racial discourse of late-nineteenth-century anthropology came upon its manner into Freud´s paintings, the place it got here to play a covert yet an important position in his notions of subjectivity. Brickman argues that the typical psychoanalytic inspiration of "primitivity" as an early degree of mental improvement inevitably contains with it implications of an anthropologically understood "primitivity," which was once conceived via Freud -and maybe nonetheless is this present day -in colonialist and racial phrases. She relates the racial subtext embedded in Freud´s idea to his representations of gender and faith and exhibits how this subtext kinds a part of the bigger historicizing development of the psychoanalytic undertaking. ultimately, she exhibits how colonialist lines have made their approach into the...

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The task, therefore, is to confront these assumptions in Freud’s cultural and social texts and in their ramifications in his metapsychologies, in the ways they are supported by his inscription of modern subjectivity within a historicizing discourse, and in the ways they filter through to the critical and clinical applications of psychoanalysis. This confrontation is not meant to invalidate the possibilities of psychoanalysis nor to “release the unconscious from inquiry”10 but, rather, to invite a rethinking of some basic psychoanalytic formulations.

Over the preceding centuries the church had issued a succession of papal bulls concerning the Crusades in the Middle East, the creation of orders such as the Knights Templars, and the forcible Christianization of pagans in Slavic countries and Lithuania. According to medieval church doctrine shaped by these events, the pope, as God’s vicar on earth, had been charged by Christ with the spiritual care of all peoples, including those outside the community of Christian belief. This meant that it was the responsibility of the pope—and, through him, his princes—to convert barbarian, infidel peoples to Christianity.

This, in turn, provides the background for a demonstration of the pervasiveness throughout Freud’s cultural and metapsychological texts of social evolutionary notions, and of the continued entanglement within psychoanalysis of the anthropological and psychological meanings of primitivity. The chapter goes on to examine regression as the mechanism in psychoanalysis that forged the link between primitivity, race, and psychopathology. Chapter 3 examines Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego, the sequel, in a sense, to Totem and Taboo, where Freud, in the guise of an analysis of the psychodynamics of groups, presented his theory of the emergence of modern subjectivity from “primitive” group formations and, in so doing, sketched out his implicit psychology of primitivity.

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