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By Celia Brickman

What half does racial distinction play in psychoanalysis? What might be realized while 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 approach into Freud´s paintings, the place it got here to play a covert yet the most important function in his notions of subjectivity. Brickman argues that the typical psychoanalytic notion of "primitivity" as an early degree of mental improvement inevitably incorporates with it implications of an anthropologically understood "primitivity," which used to be conceived through Freud -and maybe nonetheless is this day -in colonialist and racial phrases. She relates the racial subtext embedded in Freud´s suggestion to his representations of gender and faith and exhibits how this subtext types a part of the bigger historicizing development of the psychoanalytic undertaking. eventually, she exhibits how colonialist lines have made their approach into the...

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I began to realize that the problem extended far beyond the use of a single term, although I became convinced that within psychoanalysis the term primitive itself is as central to the problem of race as the term feminine is to the problem of gender. I began to notice how frequent subtle slippage between the two meanings of the term “primitivity” contributed to the effortless way in which psychoanalytic interpretation could convey—and thereby unobtrusively help reinforce—racist stereotypes. An example offered itself at a case conference I happened to attend one day, conducted by a group of white American psychoanalytically oriented psychotherapists.

15 Columbus’s first acts were to take possession of and rename the land he had just discovered. 16 By the time Columbus wrote the letters that made his discoveries widely known throughout Europe, the economic and legal imperatives of his mission had become framed in an explicitly religious discourse whose purported goal was to redeem the natives. 17 The struggle between Christians and Muslims waged in the Iberian Peninsula over centuries had just culminated in the Christian Reconquista of Granada, and the edict compelling the expulsion of the Jews from Spain had just come into force when Columbus set sail.

19′5—dc21 2002041423 A Columbia University Press E-book. edu. CONTENTS Acknowledgments Introduction 1. The Figure of the Primitive: A Brief Genealogy 2. Psychoanalysis and the Colonial Imagination: Evolutionary Thought in Freud’s Texts 3. Race and Gender, Primitivity and Femininity: Psychologies of Enthrallment 4. Historicizing Consciousness: Time, History, and Religion 5. Primitivity in the Analytic Encounter Epilogue Notes Bibliography Index ACKNOWLEDGMENTS While writing this book, I have often looked forward to the pleasure of being able to thank all the people whose learning, conversation, and support have contributed in a myriad of ways to its completion.

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