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Dying to live: mourning, melancholia and the adolescent process

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The author reviews the main points in Freud's 1917 paper 'Mourning and Melancholia' and relates them to the process of both normal and troubled adolescent development. Using clinical examples she illustrates the ways in which the processes Freud describes in melancholia operate in some disturbed adolescents such that instead of mourning the lost objects of their childhood, they become stuck, remaining ambivalently attached to them and incorporating them into their final adult identity and sexual organization.

L'auteur passe en revue les points essentiels du texte de Freud « Deuil et mélancolie » (1917e [1915]) et les relie aux processus du développement, normal et pathologique, de l'adolescence. À l'aide d'exemples cliniques, il illustre la manière dont les processus décrits par Freud dans la mélancolie sont mis en œuvre chez certains adolescents perturbés : au lieu de faire le deuil des objets perdus de leur enfance, ils restent bloqués dans l'ambivalence de leur attachement à ceux-ci et s'efforcent de les incorporer dans leur identité adulte et leur organisation sexuelle finale.

L'autrice passa in rassegna i punti principali dell'articolo del 1917 di Freud 'Lutto e melanconia' e li mette in relazione al processo dello sviluppo adolescenziale sia normale che disturbato. Utilizzando esempi clinici l'autrice illustra i modi in cui i processi che Freud descrive nella melanconia operano in alcuni adolescenti disturbati cosi' che invece del lutto per la perdita degli oggetti dell'infanzia, gli adolescenti rimangono incastrati e ambivalentemente attaccatti ad essi, incorporandoli nella loro identita' adulta finale e nell'organizzazione sessuale.

Die Autorin rezensiert die Hauptpunkte in Freud's Abhandlung ' Trauer und Melancholie' und bezieht sie auf den Prozess sowohl der normalen als auch der gestörten adoleszenten Entwicklung. Anhand von klinischen Beispielen illustriert sie die Art und Weise, in denen die Prozesse, die Freud in der Melancholie beschreibt, in einigen gestörten Jugendlichen operieren, so dass sie anstatt die verlorenen Objekte ihrer Kindheit zu betrauern, sie festgefahren sind und ambivalent an sie gebunden bleiben und sie letztlich in ihre Erwachsenenidentität und sexuelle Organisation inkorporieren.
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Keywords: Ambivalence; Ambivalenz; Ichideal; Identifizierung; Idéal du Moi; Idéal du Moi factice; Pseudo Ichideal; Surmoi adolescent; ambivalenza; ego ideal; identification; identificazione; io ideale; pseudo ego ideal; pseudo io ideale; super-io in adolescenza; superego in adolescence; Überich in der Adoleszenz

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2004

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