DIDIER ANZIEU THE SKIN EGO PDF

The skin-ego belongs to the period in development when the psychic ego differentiates from the body ego on the practical level while remaining indistinguishable from it in the imagination. Intermediate between metaphor and concept, the notion of the skin-ego was worked out by Didier Anzieu and first presented in According to Anzieu, the ego encloses the psychic apparatus much as the skin encloses the body. The chief functions of the skin are transposed onto the level of the skin-ego, and from there onto the level of the thinking ego. The functions of the skin-ego are to maintain thoughts, to contain ideas and affects, to provide a protective shield, to register traces of primary communication with the outside world, to manage intersensorial correspondences, to individuate, to support sexual excitation, and to recharge the libido.

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The skin-ego belongs to the period in development when the psychic ego differentiates from the body ego on the practical level while remaining indistinguishable from it in the imagination. Intermediate between metaphor and concept, the notion of the skin-ego was worked out by Didier Anzieu and first presented in According to Anzieu, the ego encloses the psychic apparatus much as the skin encloses the body.

The chief functions of the skin are transposed onto the level of the skin-ego, and from there onto the level of the thinking ego. The functions of the skin-ego are to maintain thoughts, to contain ideas and affects, to provide a protective shield, to register traces of primary communication with the outside world, to manage intersensorial correspondences, to individuate, to support sexual excitation, and to recharge the libido.

The skin-ego develops and is enriched by integration into the various envelopes of the sensorimotor system. It has two functional aspects, with one aspect focused on excitations of either internal or external origin and the other oriented toward communications with its entourage. An important part of psychoanalytic work with borderline patients is the reconstruction of the earliest phases of the skin-ego and their consequences for mental organization.

This task calls on the techniques of transitional analysis. Bibliography Anzieu, Didier. Le moi-peau. Nouvelle revue de psychanalyse, 9, The skin ego Chris Turner, Trans. Original work published International Dictionary of Psychoanalysis.

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The Skin Ego

Despite his importance, however, Anzieu is less well-known to Anglo-American cultural theorists than his now legendary predecessor Jacques Lacan. I begin by contextualizing his work while explaining how it is in many respects a response to Lacan and what became known in late twentieth-century France as le lacanisme. In her groundbreaking book Volatile Bodies, Elizabeth A. Grosz makes exactly this call and, in doing so, urges cultural theorists to formulate new frameworks for making sense of the self. Grosz writes: [We] must avoid the impasse posed by dichotomous accounts of the person which divide the subject into the mutually exclusive categories of mind and body. Although within our intellectual heritage there is no language in which to describe such concepts, no terminology that does not succumb to versions of this polarisation, some kind of understanding of embodied subjectivity, of psychical corporeality, needs to be developed. We need an account which refuses reductionism [and] resists dualism.

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