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Participating in the Wound of the World: A Matrixial Rethinking of Eco-anxiety

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Abstract

Some 20 years ago, the feminist psychoanalyst and artist Bracha L. Ettinger introduced a deeply feminine and relational understanding of human subjectivity into psychoanalysis and psychotherapeutic methodology. Departing from matrixial, i.e., prenatal trans-subjective connections between mother and unborn child, this understanding is capable of fundamentally questioning the hegemonic phallic narratives of individuation. This perspective is significant and focuses on processes of birthing. It does not follow the Freudian death drive or the Heideggerian “being-towards-death” with its implied dimensions of anxiety, but opens toward an affirmative “being towards birth.” This chapter marks the first attempt to apply Ettinger’s matrixial theory for understanding the relationship between humans and nature. It considers eco-anxiety from a transdisciplinary perspective, and it reveals how the ecological trauma might be overcome in establishing a shared borderspace between the human and the planetary unconscious. The chapter proposes, via feminine matrixial thinking, a matrixial rethinking of eco-anxiety with the conception of a trans-subjective subjectivity that, linked with the actors and agencies of the environment, does not follow the paths of fear but of planetary hope.

Keywords

  • Bracha L. Ettinger
  •  Matrixial Theory
  •  Anthropocene
  •  Trauma
  •  Feminist Environmental Ethics
  • Psycho-Planetary Relationality

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-031-08431-7_9
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Notes

  1. 1.

    “Barricading the Ice Sheets: Conference on Artists in the Climate Justice Movement,” Camera Austria, Graz, Austria, February 28–29, 2020.

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Correspondence to Christoph Solstreif-Pirker Ph.D. .

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Solstreif-Pirker, C. (2022). Participating in the Wound of the World: A Matrixial Rethinking of Eco-anxiety. In: Vakoch, D.A., Mickey, S. (eds) Eco-Anxiety and Planetary Hope. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-08431-7_9

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