Constructing a Mind : A New Base for Psychoanalytic Theory book cover
1st Edition

Constructing a Mind
A New Base for Psychoanalytic Theory

ISBN 9781583917671
Published May 4, 2006 by Routledge
296 Pages

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Book Description

Can the Protomental System provide a new foundation for psychoanalytic theory?

Constructing a Mind draws on psychoanalytic theories of mind and recent developments in cognitive science to present the Protomental System, a new and original explanatory theory of the development of the human mind.

This book aims to move psychoanalytic theory away from its origins in Freud's theory, towards a model which gives priority to cognition and memory. This, Antonio Imbasciati argues, will make possible a successful and productive integration of psychoanalysis with other areas of psychology. Subjects covered include:

  • The mind as an information-processing system
  • Constructing the system: from fetus to baby, child, and finally adult
  • The caregiver relationship as a decoding system for information processing
  • The paranoid-schizoid metabolism of information
  • Memory of functions and memory traces of affects
  • Internal information generated by the system
  • The depressive position and learning to know
  • Reparation and thought.

This thoughtful and thorough account of cognitive development provides a conceptual framework that succeeds in making some of the more complex areas of psychoanalytic theory more intelligible.

Constructing a Mind will be of great interest to psychoanalysts, psychotherapists and cognitive psychologists, especially those with an interest in neuropsychology and neonatal development.

Table of Contents

Introduction. The Mind. An Explanatory Theory for Psychoanalysis. The Mind as an Information-processing System. The Engram: Afferences. Mental Operations and Internal Objects. Levels of Protomental Operations. The Paranoid-Schizoid Metabolism. Affects as Cognitive Operations. Corporeity and Modes of Thought. The Depressive Position and Learning to Know. Reparation and Thought.

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Antonio Imbasciati is Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Brescia Medical School. He is a full member and training analyst of the Italian Psychoanalytical Society.