Introducing Bion and Jung

The comparison between Bion’s and Jung’s thought has become, in recent years, a field of growing interest, for a part at least of psychoanalysts and analytical psychologists, the one more open to dialogue and a ‘pluralist’ attitude towards knowledge. This issue of Funzione Gamma stems from Stefania Marinelli’s invitation to explore this field. As a result, authors from various backgrounds (including psychoanalysis, analytical psychology, and group psychoanalysis) have come together here. Therefore, it seems necessary to make a premise regarding the ‘small group’ constituted by the authors present here with their work.
There is a highly complex interweaving of historical and phantasmatic issues whenever a comparison (or confrontation) between authors can be traced back to the vicissitudes of the history of psychoanalysis.
The event that first united and then separated Freud and Jung is considered a sort of mythical antecedent with traumatic aspects, still needs to be thoroughly elaborated. So, it has indeed left traces through transgenerational transmission in the various generations of analysts of both schools, even more than a century later.
Therefore, I think that all the stratifications of the dynamics that have Read more


The autism and the music: an encounter that often succeeds


The interest of autistic children in music was traced very early and their musical skills as well. Why is the meeting between the autistic child and music possible when the one with the word is so difficult? The hypothesis we support on the occasion of this article is that music would allow autistic children to experience the address without having to experience the painful dimension of the assignment that is linked to the act of speech. Music would allow, as demonstrated by the example of the composer Antoine Ouellette, the autistic person to put into shape a chaotic world without having to Read more


Inscription into the community. A footnote on a Lacanian approach to the group treatment of psychosis


Situating psychoanalysis as the foundation of the therapeutic community and as a spiritual exercise, the author argues that contemporary approaches articulate a form of akēdia – a desire to be elsewhere – both in its focus on expectation and its misunderstanding of the nature ‘place’. This amounts to an avoidance of being-with the subject of psychosis. This leads to a discussion of the formation necessary for therapeutic community practitioners which is in opposition to the notion of training. Such a formation amounts to an inscription into the discourse of the Read more


The role of psychoanalysis in the welfare state crisis: from taking care of the patient to taking care of the healthcare institutions


Recent developments in psychoanalytic outreach researches have offered ever more convincing evidences of a circular, mutual relationship between the internal world, the group and the external society. From such point of view, the author explores the current crisis scenarios of the welfare and the parallel crisis of credibility and market of the psychoanalytic therapy. He suggests that in the future psychoanalysis could shift its focus from individual treatment  to the study of group and institution,  to the point of recasting itself as a “clinical approach to organizations” to improve efficiency, awareness and well-being in the workplaces. To make it happen, it is necessary for psychoanalysis to overcome the mistrust for interdisciplinary dialogue with other approaches, methods and disciplines, and the discomfort Read more


The emotional climate: the process of building it and contribution to change

The authors present clinical considerations rooted on their experiences in multi-family groups. They address the issue of the construction of an emotional climate and environment promoting the work of the group. The emotional climate also supports the functions of the co-therapists and of therapy itself, it maintains attention to emotional experiences and to the climate of respect and solidarity, as well as to the relationship between the internal and shared external Read more


The primal scene, the analytically oriented group and the Oedipal configurations


This paper aims to highlight how the changes in social contexts have potentially modified the fantasies and the experiences related to the primal scene and to the oedipal configurations, shrinking the space available to imagination and to the processes of subjectivation, ensuing the risk of negative aftereffects both on the subject and on his approaches to relationships. The author maintains that the analytically oriented group can be the place where the recovery Read more


Presentation “Family, group and psychoanalysis”

This issue is the second part of a first one, edited one year ago and named “Baby observation and analytic presence”. Our path has therefore started from the silent, not judging neither interpreting reflection about a new-born and its care context and now instead tries to analyse the possibilities of an active therapeutic work with the family group.
In the first issue we wondered indeed what the baby observation could teach to an analyst in training. Doing so, we particularly emphasized that this path puts the observer in direct contact with archaic psychic quotas that always remain active in the psyche and that should never be forgotten by the analyst, even when he is working with adults. We now notice that the psychological configuration of the family that is experienced “in construction” in the baby observation, remains central in the therapeutic work with families as well. Indeed, as and more than the observation, the psychoanalytic therapeutic work with the family group allows to reach and understand the original psychic structure on which the family is based and within which the children individualities are structured.
The family group is a complex system, made up of many different levels and subgroups (the same with which the baby observation allows contact). Part of the family group is, in fact, the parental couple, which originally was the conjugal couple and which is still affected by the psychic mode and history of both members; also the couple or the subgroup of the siblings, as well as the couples formed by each of the two parents with each child. Read more


From broken restrictions to new and vital experiences in therapy: from perverse communication to the discovery and identification of the affected’s world


This work of proposed family therapy started from the consideration that the model of individual psychoanalysis had not brought any of the family members to retrieve inside themselves and that in the field of group communication, there were no significant results.
A group reading with a literal sense of group was needed. Individuals unconsciously and anonymously represented conflicts and trans-generational family myths.
The basic assumption seemed to embody what Bion calls basic assumption of dependence.
The family was one person.
The stories of the father and the mother reintroduced same experiences.
The female was, in previous generations the guiding and sadist element who reigned. The mothers and grandmothers had raised sons and husbands.
The totally absent analyst, has functioned as a container, put themselves in a patient’sshoes and has developed and proposed a model of Read more


The conception of Disease: historical, anthropological and clinical observations


The authors present a dialogue aimed at illuminating the concept of disease, within a complex and multidisciplinary. Following a historical development of the concept, are first identified the elements of the value of Hippocratic medicine, and then articulate the notion with the developments that it has received as part of psychoanalysis and group psychoanalysis. To better understand the concept of disease in the latter area, are also used contributions from the anthropological studies of some cultures that have Read more


Preliminary reflections on psychoanalysis and narratology


The author highlights analogies and differences between psychoanalysis and narratology. Particular attention is given to the various ways of understanding interpretation and the concept of character. The complexity of the Read more


Some introductory notes for a psychoanalytic literature of “The Simpsons”


In an excursus on the psychoanalytic literature that has addressed the relationship between creativity and art, the authors want to highlight how the animated sitcom “The Simpsons” can now be configured as an artistic production of high symbolic value can provide significant explanatory models, suitable to “read” like a case or of a literary classic, precise dynamic unconscious. This reflection is emphasized as ways of expressing the popular series will serve as a record and a language more refined than those Read more


Film References: Cinema, Psychology, Psychoanalysis and Mental Distress

In the Film References we included interesting films under a psychological perspective and from a more general point of view of mental distress. The selection of films has followed different criteria: the explicit content; the multidimensional deepening of the psychology of characters or of an atmosphere; the possible usage of the film as a tool in a clinical or educational context; apparent group dynamics. As to the explicit content, it can refer to the presence of characters affected by a mental distress, to the presence of a professional of mental health, the setting in a mental health institution. Clearly, some of these categories overlap, but not always; in some cases the mental health professional is absent even when the film set is a mental asylum, as in The Escaped Lunatic. Often, both a patient and a mental health professional are present when the relationship matters in the film, but it can happen that only a mental distressed character plays a role, or that a mental health professional is portrayed in his private life. It can even happen that they are the same person, rather often indeed when the film is a thriller. Read more


Cinema, Psychology, Psychoanalysis and Mental Distress: General Bibliography

In the General Bibliography there are works that are related in several ways to the wide field of studies devoted to the relationship between film, psychoanalysis and mental distress. This collection, even if substantial, is not intended to be either exhaustive or judgemental. Items are listed alphabetically; any thematic classification is left to the curiosity of the reader. There are works written not only by psychoanalysts, but also by philosophers, film critics, semiologists, men of letters. Indeed, after an initial period in which this topic has been developed mainly through psychoanalysts’ publications in specialized journals, by the end of the ‘60s many disciplines were dealing with the subject and a large number of journals, film ones as well, were publishing these works: let us mention the special monographic issue of the French Journal Communications – a French journal focused on semiology – , released in1975 with the title Psychanalyse et Cinéma, hosting articles by Barthes, Baudry, Guattari, Metz and others. Other items belongs to semiology and film theory, that use psychoanalytic concepts Read more