Affect Categories and the Compulsion to Repeat

  • A. H. Modell


This paper describes the importance of the revolutionary theory of memory proposed by Edelman (1987). This theory, which he called neural Darwinism, provides a more differentiated understanding of the psychoanalytic concept of the compulsion to repeat. The compulsion to repeat can be seen as something that can only be passively endured, as one’s fate is passively endured (e.g. being motivated by the death instinct), or it can be viewed as an attempt to achieve active mastery. This second position is theoretically more plausible, taking into account the new findings of neurosciences. But it also allows us to achieve a new understanding of the role of affects in transference and countertransference, a view that is illustrated by many clinical vignettes in this chapter.


Affective Response Affective Experience Standard Edition Oedipus Complex Motor Apparatus 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1992

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  • A. H. Modell

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