and of















   Interpretation of the Logic

of the Process of Creation Using the Szondi Test





Karl Louvet


Translated by

Arthur C. Johnston, PhD

© 2009

by Arthur C. Johnston










Sponsor: Professor Jean Mélon                                                   

Dissertation presented for obtaining the rank of Doctorate in Psychology.          

September 1995




























INTRODUCTION................................................................................ iv

mETHODOLOGY............................................................................... 1

THEORETICAL aPPROACH.......................................................... 43

Results......................................................................................... 189

appendixes................................................................................... 242

Appendix 1: Commentaries.............................................................. 243

Appendix 2: Continuum Ratings by Testees...................................... 283





To create is to go beyond the limits of the conceivable. It is the movement that transcends itself on the course that goes from the point of origin to the point created. This movement can require several aspects going from putting in place a relation to different things to putting into form something that it did not have.


This trajectory of thought that creates is positive in the sense where the result is not a pure and simple deconstruction. It is the trajectory of the looking at* [regard] that expels its own looking [regard] and positions it into the object of the looking [regard]. This reversal on oneself that chooses its existence makes it possible to strike this self in the object in order better to perceive oneself and thus better to detach oneself from it.

[*looking at is one translation of this key word regard; other translations are look, looking, glance, attention, focus, viewpoint, view, viewing, perspective—all have the literal meaning of a person looking with his or her eyes at something.  Generally, it means the perspective of the self and inner world or that of the Other and the external world. Since it is awkward always to translate regard with the word look, its simplest translation, several different words will be used.  Note: any comments within brackets are those of the translator, not the author.]


This alchemical transformation of human thought that is expelled from the self makes possible that its essence proceeds into the existential. To create is to plunge into one’s essence in order to extend towards the being that frees one from one’s former choices. Basically, all is possible for the not-differentiated and all is the potentiality of being. The liberated spirit releases the enclaves of one’s being and is impregnated with the freedom of being with respect to the attachment to things. A pure movement towards detachment.


To examine the creative process is to separate from something in us, a little as if the mooring ropes of a boat suddenly broke loose.


But we live in a space and a time where the thought must reconcile two vectors: that of the concretized stowed in a body that is human, familial, social; and that of the potentiality, this vestige of thought that characterizes the human species. It is at this crossroads, worthy of the devil, that is registered the dialectical between detachment and attachment, between absolute power and limitation, and between oneself and the Other*. [*Other = L’Autre that stands specifically for the Other and generally for anything external to the self.]


The human being intrinsically is a crossroads between two dimensional planes: the abstract and the concrete. It is an incarnated link. It is perhaps this nature of the interspace that enabled one to go so far in creation. This is only possible at the continual intersection between two worlds: that which is and that which becomes. To create is a position where the creator is at the tangent to himself and in a precession* of oneself. It is the link in a transitional nature, that which consists in having anticipated itself and thus existing on two planes: the potential and that which exists. [*precession = going first]


Getting ideas is one thing; to make them concrete is another. If the thought can be transcended by itself, can it, by itself, be self-limiting? We will see what way the light of the mythical figure of Nemesis can do for us in this obscure part of ourselves that sometimes makes the most worthless decisions for our destiny.


To enter the world of creators is to learn all the value and the importance that we bring to our vision of the world, to its illusions, and its impasses. Our looking looks at the world all the time, but do we look at ourselves sufficiently with this looking in order to correct it? And if looking loses itself in the labyrinths of our desires or the desires of others, how to leave the inside of a looking at one? And if even so we succeed in doing it, what to think when one is exposed faced with its look that penetrates to the truth of us? What to say to oneself when one realizes that all our words are lost in an existential impasse and that which remains to us is rightly a looking at things?


It is even so just a looking at us and, yet, it is present at every moment and it marks its print on all that happens to us. Gradually, this looking traces the path of another perception of things and another manner of representing itself. Each day, all that is built in us is the heritage of this looking. The choices that we make carry the mark of this looking. And, one beautiful day, we open our eyes and when we look before us, we can not believe our eyes: all is changed. And, in us, what was the same is no longer the same, and we look behind at our past and it seems another world to us and of another dimension.


Between the inside and the outside and in all these things, there is this look that is like a cement of life. It is perhaps in the Bible the sentence that says: “And we all will be changed in a blink of the eye.” We believe indeed that if our looking at the world changes, everything changes. Because our perception changes, our manner of feeling for things and finally our representations and, consequently, all the choices and all the decisions that we make are connected to this manner of looking. To go away from its look and to change it is to change everything because it is at the source.


But to go away from its look on us is to enter into the fault* [la faille], the discontinuity. It is a little as if the cloth on which we project our vision is torn and we are face to face with our looking at things. The fault is an element of the system that recognizes that it is in a system that threatens us and that by its look comes no longer to be part of the system any more since it has viewed it from the outside. As long as it did not know that, it was in the inside of the system. [*fault (la faille) = a fault in a stone, a crack in a stone, a flaw, a break, a rupture]


When the system threatened the integrity of this element, this person looked at the system with his own perspective and look and not with the perspective and look of the system. He saw where he was, and by perceiving this, he pre-detached his being from this system. He created a look and perspective suitable for him that was not registered in the system. If he saw it correctly, he would change the system. Then, we say that it is the action of a creator. If he does not change the system, he will remain at the side lines, in error, regarded as “mad” and as one “disconnected.”


To speak about creation without speaking about the fault [la faille] is like speaking about life while omitting death. Only a break [la faille] in the relation to the known and the conceivable can push the creator towards the unknown. And this break seems to be in the threat that weighs on the ego of the creator who inscribes himself in a participative thought. Thus in this way to approach the process of creation, the illumination, and in another that of the dialectic between l’ipséité [oneself as an individual, individuality] and l’altérité [the otherness, the Other] seems essential.


The Szondi Test will, we hope, be a faithful ally in this journey. It should enable us to set boundaries in the manner of a guide.


The subject of our dissertation is not just one. In fact, this dissertation involves three subjects:

·   The subject itself of this dissertation, i.e. its contents, and the object of this investigation: the process of creation.

·   The subject who wrote this dissertation, the subject for the knowledge, in fact our self and the authors on whom we count to be in agreement in thinking.

·   The subject for which this dissertation is intended, its readers.


These three subjects have in common to be happening together. Theory always advances toward horizons that recede. Theory is continuously altered thanks to the contribution of all. The subject who writes the dissertation is in the process of obtaining his diploma and is thus in an existential transition. Lastly, the subject who will read this dissertation is also on this journey in as much as any human being that is faced with knowledge.

Understanding and taking with you what is said when reading this dissertation is agreeing in some part to follow along side the path given in thoughts that have tried to clench all the more closely a logic of the creative process. It is perhaps the common denominator to the three subjects -- to be on a journey -- that can, perhaps, permit the creation of a field common to the three subjects. A course that is proposed to be taken by oneself this subject that is in us all.


Let us go to the first matter of this dissertation.









































Table of Contents

Introduction........................................................................................................... 2

Purpose of the Dissertation......................................................................... 2

Principles................................................................................................................... 3

General Stages...................................................................................................... 4

Population................................................................................................................. 5

The Szondi Test........................................................................................................ 7

1. Description of the Test................................................................................................ 7

1.1 Introduction to Theory.......................................................................................... 8

1.1.1 The Structural Problem of Fate Analysis [Schiksalsanalyse].......................... 8

1.1.2 The Structural Point of View and the Reference to the Primal Fantasies .... 11

1.1.3 The Ontogenetic Point of View and the Theory of the Drive Circuits ........ 13

1.2 The Indexes......................................................................................................... 18

1.2.1 Symptomatic Index (Sy%)........................................................................... 18

1.2.2 Index of Acting (S0/±)................................................................................. 18

1.2.3 Tension Index (S!)........................................................................................ 19

1.2.4 Social Index.................................................................................................. 19

1.2.5 Index of Variability...................................................................................... 20

1.2.6 Index of Disorganization.............................................................................. 20

1.2.7 The Drive Formula and the Root factors...................................................... 21

1.2.8 Drive Positions............................................................................................. 21

First Positions................................................................................................. 22

Second Positions............................................................................................ 22

Third Positions............................................................................................... 23

Fourth Positions............................................................................................. 24

1.2.9 Forms of Existence....................................................................................... 25

1.3 Periodic Interpretation of the Drive Circuits...................................................... 26

Periodic Table of Drive Cleavages........................................................................ 27

1.4 Average Profiles.................................................................................................. 30

2. Three Levels of Analysis............................................................................................ 33

The Accompanying Framework................................................................ 33

1. Final Purpose........................................................................................................... 33

2. Description................................................................................................................ 34

The Continuums.................................................................................................... 34

Continuum Number 1..................................................................................... 34

Continuum Number 2..................................................................................... 34

Continuum Number 3..................................................................................... 35

Continuum Number 4..................................................................................... 35

Continuum Number 5..................................................................................... 35

Continuum Number 6..................................................................................... 36

Continuum Number 7..................................................................................... 36

Methodological Approach......................................................................... 36

1. General Information................................................................................................. 36

2. Interviews and Testing...............................................................................................38

Bibliography.......................................................................................................... 40





The question is to encompass what would probably be a creative process in the work of the majority of creators. Our aim will be clinical within the context of a meeting between a psychologist who would have a framework of interpretation and a person who creates. It would be a halfway meeting between the knowledge of a psychologist, very often of the psychiatric type, with a nosologic aim [classifying of diseases] and that of the more philosophical creator, open a little to all views and thus eclectic.


Each creator has one or more manners of functioning, but we dare to hope to be able to decipher a certain coherence on the level of the operating rules: this is the subject of this dissertation.


The method is to some extent a path that one follows to reach a certain goal. Our idea of method thus results from the aim of our research, which finally amounts to explaining the purpose of this dissertation.

Purpose of the Dissertation

The purpose is to try with the aid of the Szondi Test to approach what would be a creative process. All in all, we hope to shed light on the creative process thanks to the Szondi Test.


We choose a theoretical framework of reference and we look to see if this framework can make a process reveal itself. Does it make it possible to meet the creator as he is?


This “way of seeing” will be able perhaps to shed light on the people who are faced with the complexity of the creative process. Our report does not consist in finding an exhaustive theory of the process of creation. It rests on the idea that it is possible, using the Szondi Test, to build a theoretical interpretation that can clarify the clinical aspects about creators in a very broad sense. The clinical aspects of creators being understood here as experienced by the people who subject themselves to a creative process.


Our goal would be reached, if this report permits, a better encounter between the knowledge of the psychologist and that of the creator. At stake is basically the encounter.


To determine the process, only the movement back and forth between the clinical and the theoretical seems to us to guarantee a “practical theory” that is adjusted as well as possible with the fundamental data. To make it possible for the creators to put in perspective themselves by an outlook that is not often theirs is a richness if this perspective respects the course of their thought. The psychologist can consequently be conceived [naître]with them in the sense of together knowing [connaître] them.


The idea of a cycle came to us in order to put the various theoretical concepts into form. This idea germinated in the course of our experience of the lifestyles of the creators. The knowledge of the creators tends besides towards this idea that they feel sometimes clearly in the sense where they “know” that they are overloaded and that it is necessary that “that manner” or otherwise “that” will block them. They feel good that they live their lives with a cyclic pace that has a beginning, a middle and an end even if that is not always also definite. The object that will be created directs the process according to a cycle still emerging; the finished work and the “ejection” of this object into reality rest on a redundant pattern that is in the object. Sometimes, several objects at the same time are in a moment of creation at various stages, but even there the creator locates these objects according to a strategy of the cyclic type at various stages according to the object and its progress. The literature speaks about stages, and we will see that according to Anzieu, there are five stages.


If the dynamics of creation rest on a process that evolves more or less cyclically, we are correct to think that this process can be marked by various mental configurations. Those would be like some kinds of landmarks on a journey. These configurations would be connected then according to an overall logic that covers the process.


The method by means of the test would consist in finding the various stages important in creation. These stages would correspond to mental constellations that would have significant meaning in relation to the life of the creator. The questions would be consequently about what type of configuration it is and how connected to others. Then, in the best of cases, a global theory would recall the whole course while trying to clarify the guiding thread of the process.


Finally, using the test, the clinician could locate the mental configuration of the creator in the cycle. From there, he could consequently reframe the life of the creator according to the “limits” in which he finds himself.


Indeed, it is the comparison between two logics that will give a key for analysis. The first logic is that of the creative process with its stages, its risks, and its internal movement. The second logic is that of the test that states how energy is distributed among the various choices, the test giving the state of the mental “engine.” Thus, the confrontation of the life of the creator with the data of the test makes it possible to see whether there is a discordance, or a congruence, or a tension between the two logics and in which area. The creator thus would receive the most reliable possible analysis.


The reference would thus be located in an interval made up of the life of the creator and the data resulting from the interpretation of the test in agreement with the experience of the psychologist.

General Stages

1 - To observe and to retrieve observations from the facts. This framework of observation is based on some criteria that are characterized by:

- being as much as possible common to the greatest number of creators;

- being basic (essential to the process);

- being as much as possible unequivocal (to go to the essence).


2 - To remain “virgin” from the literature on the subject. Not to proceed to draw directly from the books of information that would prevent observing certain things. To incite a “thirst” for information in us, a lack of knowing in order to sharpen one's observation. To be a look that looks at and not a look that confirms. To give up the loss of a mastered knowledge for a knowledge of discovery. Therefore, to accept regions of darkness until late in the research.


3 - To continually traverse back and forth between the revealed theoretical elements and the empirical ones. The more the theoretical aspects become clear, the more extracted information of the empirical is precise and of quality.


4 - To make evident the visible: to bring its perception to a degree of zero. “What I look at, I look at it still poorly, what do I see in an obvious way?” We think particularly of Einstein, who said that: “It is the theory that decides what we can observe” or of Piaget, who said that: “It is a matter of the environment to the degree that authorizes the level reached by the individual.” That leaves us with a rather broad field of view.


5 - To find a line of conduct, a guiding thread among the facts.


6 - To arrange “theoretical spaces a little” like small islands not necessarily connected to the whole but that “keep sufficiently to the road” (a kind of non-homogeneous suspension that will end up by becoming part of it).


7 - To build a first theoretical architecture and to reorganize it to obtain that which is the least unsatisfactory as possible. To change the observation according to that.


8 - To interpret the subject and to refine the whole.


As the crow flies, while using the Szondian vocabulary, we passed throughout our dissertation from a maximum state of introjection (k +) to a k - state, i.e. a position legalist-realistic-rational. Sometimes, we remain in the shadowy regions of the type k ± , i.e. semi-realistic and semi-intuitive at the end of the course.


The expression “knowledge of discovery” is welcome consequently to qualify this report. Finally, it is only one interpretation that helps to understand in the best case the empirical. But it is never more than an approximation of the complexity of the human psyche.


In the final analysis, to have a mastered knowledge is reassuring and gratifying but where is the common ground to be situated? On the other hand, to give up the loss of  the absolute power of theoretical knowledge is difficult. We think consequently that the most important end is the happy medium.


The people tested are selected according to the function of the creative process. That means that these people follow this process in their lives: some for a long time, others for a little, and that with more or less intensity according to the occasions.


How to define such people? We went along with the opinion that consists in taking people considered as creative. We do not have criteria sufficient to say that this or that individual is more of a creator than another. The quantitative aspect is relative. The qualitative aspect is also. A known creator can confine himself in the same category whereas a student can create a method of analysis particularly difficult to understand without being recognized at this moment as creative. The rich occasions of creation have highs and lows in the same person. The key word is “unforeseeable.” In extreme cases, it is a little a mixture of intuition, of reputation, of favorable circumstances and of practical conveniences that made us choose these people.


The majority are regarded as very creative by several different people. The creative production attests to this evaluation. For these, there is not any doubt that creation is an engrossing part of their lives. This is so for Henri, Georges, Jeanne, Jean-Marie, JP, Mité, Joseph and Pierre.


On the other hand, three younger subjects were selected for their “admission” into the creative dimension. These three people are likely candidates for a creative course in full development. They are not really known for their creative aspect. It is rather their personal progress that brings them to creation with more or less results. In any case, we find interesting that they have their place in our report because they represent attempts at organization of a creative process. This applies to Anne, Zénon Elée and Zéphyrin.


The people in creation are not easy to insert in a procedure like ours. We have eliminated the refusals. In addition, two people stopped after a few profiles. The first of these people was eliminated because she felt negative influences because of the test. Whatever one thinks about it, this test disturbed this person. The second person took up again the testing after having taken a respite.


Very often, it is difficult enough for the creators to agree to open their interior realm that is often extremely protected without knowing what the returns will be in the final analysis. They very often try to know a maximum of facts on what interests them. This mental “enterprise” on what touches them and the difficulty of doing it with our dissertation can perhaps explain this mistrust.


For our part, we spoke at length with them. We left them the possibility of forming their own opinion about our procedure while answering all their questions. This attitude is very demanding in time since a profile can occur in a five hour long discussion. We did not prevent the creator from being interested in our personal world. It is a little a giving of our world for a receipt of theirs. All that is possible smoothly only if we are fundamentally interested in creation.


On the other hand, if one feels the “scientific objectification,” the door is closed automatically. There is a meeting between two people each preoccupied by their research or there is no meeting.


All the people tested agreed to come into contact with us and our procedure by the intervention of a person whom we know and who was different each time. It is the confidence in this intermediary that made it possible to open the door to the creator. For other creators, it is the fact of knowing them personally that enabled us to start this research with them.


Four of these people agreed to take the test many times so that we could have a maximum of profiles for an analysis on a larger scale. For the others, the average of the profiles is approximately six except for two subjects with whom we have only three profiles each.


This disproportion reflects the attempt to have a basic core made up of important protocols and the clarifications constituted by the small protocols. We do not hide the fact that it is very tiresome to obtain so many profiles from the same person who, moreover, is creative and thus not very inclined to yield to such a difficult procedure. We are glad to have four “large” protocols. Even for “the small protocols,” it was not easy to obtain them. Very often, the creator wanted “to quit” before a new profile. We often put “the pressure” nicely to bring closer a meeting.


Georges is a little different because he had been for a long time with a Szondian psychologist who agreed to give us his protocols. We thus have about forty profiles covering one period of his life known as "blocked" in addition to those that we collected.


The majority of the people tested have a knowledge about their creative process. It was born from the period of their life and their experiences, but what is more difficult for us is that this knowledge rests on a discourse that is strongly attached to the creative life. That, in turn, is made of intuition, feelings, sentiments, strategies, rituals, interpretations…. Thus to be able to transfer this knowledge into a psychological discourse, we judiciously helped ourselves with the Szondi Test to clarify the life of the creators.

The Szondi Test

We largely and amply were based on the thesis of Martine Stassart for the presentation of the test (15). We more or less followed his layout in order to respect the coherence of his work. The Szondi Test is rather long but it is its richness and its complexity that clarifies things. We make a point of paying homage to the work of Mr. Stassart, who allows us to give to the reader a presentation of the test whose clearness is by far the best possible to our knowledge.

1. Description of the Test

The test is comprised of six series of eight photographs. It is managed by presenting to the subject each series. one following one another. The instruction consists in requiring the subject to make choices concerning these photographs. He is asked to choose two photographs that he judges antipathetic and two others that he judges sympathetic. The four other photographs will be used in a second round of choices.


Each photograph shows a face. Each face evokes a meaningful psychiatric “destiny” registered in the face. As we will show through the thesis of Mr. Stassart, Szondi has chosen in a precise way eight types of individuals whom one, each time, finds again in the six series.


Once the choices are made , a system of code makes it possible to align a profile including eight elements when the analysis starts.


We will refer the reader to the work of Jean Mélon, “Théorie et pratique du Szondi” of 1975 (8) for the encoding of the test.

1.1 Introduction to Theory

Being different from the other projective tests, the Szondi Test contains its own theory; that is intrinsic to it.


The major discovery of Szondi resides in his drive diagram (Triebschema) since this diagram presides as well over the construction and working of the test as also to the theoretical elaboration of the empirical data resulting from the test experimentation.

1.1.1 The Structural Problem of Fate Analysis [Schicksalsanalyse].

Built on the basis of the great clinical entities of traditional psychiatry, the drive system (Triebsystem) brings about, according to the words of Schotte, “the passage from the classes to the categories.” (Schotte, 13, pp. 21-76)


The classes are those of an original nosographic regrouping [regrouping of diseases] produced with the crossing of the works of Kraepelin and Bleuler, as regards the ordering of the psychiatric field through the opposition between the cyclothymias (C) and schizophrenias (Sch), and from Freud concerning the correspondence between the sexual perversions (S) and the neuroses defined as the “negative of the perversion,” whose paradigm is hysteria redefined as a paroxysmal disorder (P).


As for the categories, they are those of human existence reassembled from an anthropopsychiatric point of view that, in accordance with the principle of the crystal, sees in the pathological forms of this existence the “royal road” that leads to the comprehension of normal psychological functioning, the human being regarded as a being in becoming (ontogenetic point of view) whose development is subjected to a collection of invariable and universal laws (structural point of view).


Szondi concurs explicitly in the fundamental opinion of Freud where this is affirmed specifically:


We have know for a long time that we must expect to meet the same complexes and the same conflicts among patients and among healthy and normal people. We are even accustomed to suppose in any civilized man a certain amount of repression of perverse stirrings, of anal eroticism, homosexuality and others, as well as a share of father and maternal complexes, and still other complexes, just as in an elementary analysis of an organic compound we can detect in all certainty the elements of carbon, oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen and a little sulfur. What distinguishes the organic compounds one from each other is the quantitative proportion of these elements and the constitution of the connections that they establish among themselves. This then is the case in the normal people and the neurotics; it is thus not the existence of these complexes and conflicts, but the question of knowing if those have became pathogenic, and in this case which mechanisms they have implemented. (Freud, 5, p. 180)


The first ambition of Szondi has always been to found psychopathology as a science, with its own objects and its laws, to make a science auto-logic of it, like all other fundamental sciences, in order not to need to import its concepts from other fields of knowledge and thus always to function in a crossbreed and analogical way.


For this purpose, Szondi tries to make it share the essence of and to be an accessory of the psychiatric nosography of his time. This leads to his rearranging the things in a certain order, starting from the concept of drive that he obviously borrows from Freud.


The decisive act will have been to enumerate the drives, to arrange them within a system, to encompass them in a unit and to affirm that this unit made a structure, that it is the structure-itself of the operation by which the human being as a person is animated, not by immutable instincts, like the animal, but by a set of drives whose destiny is unforeseeable.


It is the limits of enumeration of the factors and drive vectors and their presentation in the table of protocol of the test that gives to the drive diagram its character of structure. From now on, each factor, each vector, each component of the table is defined by relation to the others:


Nothing any more has autonomous existence; all is reconstituted in and by networks of significant relations: we have just left the mode in which the mental diseases are considered “partes extra partes,”* for the articulation of a single structure whose whole divides them and no more regroups them. (Schotte, 13, p. 155) [*a part as an external thing to another part: It means that things exist alongside, beyond each other, exterior to each other. No interdependence, just external independent existence.]


From being put into a table, each component receives, in addition to its own significance, a value from a position in the whole. (Mélon, 11, p. 5)


This is what results when speaking about “drive positions,” with the Kleinien sense of the term, rather than of drive tendency or reaction as done by Szondi. For Szondi, the psychic or mental diseases are not diseases of the brain (Hirnkrankheiten) or spirit (Geisteskrankheiten) but of the drive diseases (Triebkrankheiten). When he produced his system for the drives, Szondi distinguished four of them that he judged fundamental:


the Contact Drive (C)

the Sexual Drive (S)

the Affects Drive, called Paroxysmal (P)

the Ego Drive (Sch), Sch corresponding here to the first three letters of the word Schizophrenia.


The drives, Freud has already stated, are not identifiable in themselves. One can recognize them only through their representatives (Repräsentanten) and, at best, when those are delivered up, as regards the affects (Affekte), the representations (Vorstellungen) of a thing (Sache), and words (Worte), with extreme manisfestations, which make one and/or the other of the drives dissociate from a totality where they were supposed to make a good arrangement with the others.


It is the disproportion of a drive demand that unbalances the total structure and, by making it to stick out in an exaggerated way, makes it appear in its singularity.


For example, the need to be avenged (e -) or, the contrary, to repair (e +), to make amends by its merits -- these needs can be so strong that they direct the whole destiny of a subject, sometimes making this destiny great, but sometimes also its misery, making him or her insane or mad,  a devil for himself or herself and for others.


If we consider the four great drives or the four drive vectors (as Szondi calls them), we can say that:


The disorders of Contact are the disorders of mood, which we call thymo-psychopathics, represented at the extreme by mania and depression; m and d, initials of mania and depression, become the two constitutive factors of the Contact vector.


The disorders of contact are the disorders of mood [humour] that are disorders of our fundamental relation to the surrounding world, disorders of harmony (in the musical sense of the term, Stimmung) in the rhythm of life, disorders of the rapport to the environment; bad mood, to state things simply, is a mood out of tune.


The Sexual disorders are perversions. Perverse imbalance occurs when all the life is dominated by the desire to posssess the sex object completely, when the pleasure in the quasi sense of the term, becomes the only goal or the supreme goal; the prototypic representatives of perversion are the homosexual and the sadist.


The Paroxysmal disorders are neurotic troubles. The definition that Szondi gives of neurosis is not everyone's. For Szondi, neurotic troubles, in a strict sense, are those that intervene in the life of the affects and that appear noisily by crises, by paroxysms, from where are derived the concept of paroxysmality. But what produces the affects?


It is, states Szondi, not the relation with the object or the environment but the meeting always the surprising and inevitable conflict with the principle of the Law and the two great fundamental interdictions that are the interdiction against the murder of the father and the interdiction against incest, in other words that of Oedipus.


The prototypic representatives of the neurosis, definite as more or less permanent state of crisis, are, for Szondi, not the obsessional and the hysterical, as it is the case with Freud, but the epileptic and the hysteric, i.e. those who react violently to the (Oedipal) crisis by making precisely “crises.”


Lastly, the disorders of ego are those that relate to the ontogenesis of the ego, its auto-ob-tention (Selbst-er-haltung) like its self-preservation (Selbsterhaltung) and, negatively, the destruction of the relation of the subject to oneself that leads to the extreme forms of the disorders of identity met in psychosis and more particularly in Schizophrenia whose prototypic figures are those of the catatonic [katatonique in German] and of the paranoiac.

1.1.2 The Structural Point of View and the Reference to the Primal Fantasies.

The merit goes to Jean Mélon for having pointed out what makes the structure of Szondi, as also to Freud, to establish the homology in fact between the Szondian vectors and the Freudian primal fantasies. (Mélon, 10, pp. 673-680)   


Primal fantasies as “a core in the unconscious” (Kern of Unbewussten) and guides in a preconception -- to what correspond the infantile sexual theories -- of what occurs with the little man defined as a subject of/with the drives are organizers of human desire as this desire precisely plunges its roots in the fantasy or fantasies.


As Laplanche and Pontalis have remarkably shown (Laplanche and Pontalis, 6, pp.1833-1868), the primal fantasies are charged to give an account of the origin and the sudden appearance of the first elements constitutive of true human desire at the same time as they offer a model to him and give him a form through the putting of him into a scene where the positions of subject and object are not given in advance.


If one refers to the Lacanian trilogy of the Symbolic, the Imaginary and the Real, one can state that the real [reality], impossible to know as such, is the drive, that the imaginary consists of the series of the idiosyncratic fantasies of the subject and the “thoughts of connection and transition” (Mélon, 10), and that the symbolic system is the whole, the structure, of the laws that govern the operation of the psychical reality whose primal fantasies, as organizing designs of the desire, constitute to some extent the matrix.


It is rather easy to see that what is in question in the Sexual Vector of Szondi is the question of the relation to the body as an object of seduction and pleasure. The Paroxysmal Vector confronts the subject with the Law, the major interdictions against incest and parricide, the primal scene representing the impossible meeting place between two incompatible sexualities: infantile sexuality and adult sexuality.


The Ego Vector, raising the question of the differentiating identification, between to be and to have, returns to the decisive question of the difference of the sexes through fantasy and the theory of castration.


As for the Contact Vector, it is put in connection with the primal fantasy of regression into the womb of the mother, which Freud always hesitated to insert into the series of the primal fantasies because he saw there a kind of idealized mythical transposition of the fantasy of the primitive scene.














With each Szondian vector corresponds a particular field of psychic operation with its own problems, in particular with regard to the relation to the body, the relation of subject and object, the grammatical position of the person, a certain type of aggressive aim…. The passage from one field to another is carried out through a filter where each time must be elaborated a well defined type of dialectical conflict.

1.1.3 The Ontogenetic Point of View and the Theory of the Drive Circuits.

In 1975, Jacques Schotte (14, pp. 20-25) proposed to generalize on the four vectors of the diagram with the concept of the drive circuit (Triebesumlaufsbahn) that Szondi had introduced only for the Sch Vector (16, pp. 389-391).


This concept of the circuit, to Szondi himself, refers to two ideas: on the one hand that normality or mental health is related to a certain mobility of the drive life in opposition to the petrification into certain cleavages or certain rigid structures that characterize the pathological. In addition, the concept of the circuit evokes the idea of an order of increasing complexity between the various functions of the ego.


From a genetic point of view, if, at least concerning our culture, the negative-rational tendency (k -) expresses itself the best throughout the latency period (between 6 and 10 years), the awakening of the consciousness of desire (p +: das Wunschesbewusstwerden) takes on a certain amplitude only in the late phase of adolescence (Mélon, 9, pp. 140-159). There are good reasons to think that the ontogenesis of the ego is carried out according to the schema suggested by Susan Deri (1, pp. 182-204).



1. O -             indistinctness of ego and the other (before one year)

2. + - all powerful magic-autistic ego (pre-Oedipus)

3. ± - phase of turbulence (Oedipal age)           

4. - - latency period

5. - O             beginning of adolescence

6. - + adolescence


The subject discovers himself initially in his semblance or his image in a mirror, which corresponds to the mechanism of projective identification (Sch O -), then he introjects this image (k +) to make it the core of his ego ideal (Sch + -), authority of the body essence endowed with all powerful magic.


Thus the primary narcissism is constituted in a strict sense of the term by the favored investment of the object-ego products left from the specular image, which the myth of Narcissus illustrates so well.


This primary narcissistic imago that results in fact from a seduction creates in the subject the illusion that it is the center of the world and the sole object of the desire of the other or, which refers to the same, the object -- the phallus -- which is absent in the other.


This imago necessarily will undergo a deflation under the double impact of the revelation of the difference of generations -- “You have no part in this yet!” -- and of the sexes: “You lack something or there is something that everyone does have and of which you could be deprived.”


The reaction k - that opposes negation and repression to affirmation and to introjection (k+) ensures a function of transformation in a paradoxical sense of Aufhebung, i.e. of a change where the suppression of the old state does not imply its pure and simple destruction but ensures, on the contrary, its conservation under a new species; Aufhebung fulfills the double function to demote the primary narcissism by self-criticism -- birth of the superego -- while saving this same narcissism by the negation of the insults made to the first ego ideal (Sch + -, + O) and the transfer of the primary narcissistic libido onto the secondary authority of the ego ideal (p +) that the subject “projects in front of him like the heir to the lost narcissism of his childhood; in that time it was for him his own ideal.” (Freud, 2, p. 98).


However, behind this authority of the ego ideal is hidden the most important of all the identifications, that of the father of personal prehistory, immediate identification, anterior to any object-choice…. (Freud, 3, p. 200).


The taking into account from this favorable point of view is to be considered as the “paramount” identification with the father of the origins (Urvater), prototype of the Superego and the Superman (Uberich, Ubermensch) and is to be located as well at the origin (arch) and at the end (teloz) where one becomes oneself, as an archaic imago (Urmensch) and teleological model (Übermensch) of becoming a man.


This remark is very important because it underlines how much the genetic point of view is subordinated to the structural point of view that includes it in accordance with the principle of the ontic-ontological* reversibility, which means that from the ontological point of view, in the order of being, the position p+ is at the origin of the circuit, while from the ontic point of view, in the order of being, p + is at the final stage of the development and the Ego Circuit, which gives significance to Goethe's adage : “Become what you are!”. [*ontic: pertaining to the biologic development of the individual (ontogenesis); ontological: the treatment of the essence of things or being]


The final identification (secondary) with the father replaces the primary originating identification.


One understands by the above that in the ontic (developmental) order -- because of prematurity and of the vestiges that specifically characterizes the human being -- the identification process begins and is anchored in the primary projection (p -) that consists in locating the ideal of absolute power of ego in an external concrete object invested with an absolute power, of which the subject “takes part” (p -) as Freud shows it in “Collective Psychology and Ego Analysis” (Freud, 4), the other being able to be incarnated, in the examples given by Freud, by the chief, the hypnotist, the love object but also the mother.


If introjection (k+) consists in incorporating all or partly the object of ideal love with whom the subject takes part (Sch + -), negation and repression (k -) are done in the name of a higher authority, that of the Superego-Ego ideal (Sch - +) that calls forth the desexualization and the giving up for a loss the original object, with, as corollary, orientation of the libido toward external objects and the abandonment of the primary narcissism (corporeal) for the benefit of the secondary narcissism (spiritual).


One thus obtains a circuit of ego in the form of eight reversed:



Schotte proposes to generalize the concept of circuit to the four drive vectors:

Inside each vector, an order of succession is introduced among the four poles consisting of the positive and negative positions of each factor.


The circuits introduce an asymmetrical arrangement between the two factors of each vector. From now on there exists in each vector a factor -- known as director (m, h, e, p) -- whose internal dialectical is mediated by the Other. The passage from the first to the last position of the circuit is done via the second factor that is used as a mediator (d, s, hy, k).


Finally the circuits introduce a temporal dimension, progressive, in the reading of the diagram and the positions, where Szondi had proposed an order exclusively spatial. The genetic reading that we consider from now on is obviously an exploitation of this last property.


If each circuit is the reflection of the whole of the diagram, reciprocally, the periodic reading, that rests on the sequential order C-S-P-Sch, is supplemented or enriched; the whole of the diagram that can from now on also be the object of a reading “in circuit.”


That means that the relations that the vectors maintain between them in the diagram are homologous with the relations that are maintained among them with the positions inside a vector.


The introduction of the circuits makes the drive diagram a structure on two levels, characteristic that appears fundamental for our actual developments, as well from a theoretical point of view as in the applications that are made by it in the interpretative step on the level of the results of the test. The double level of the circuits makes it possible to introduce the 16 drive positions in a table with two entrances, which presents them in series (C: m+ d - d+ m -) and in levels (1: m+ h+ e - p -), evoking something analogous to the periodic table of the elements conceived by Mendeleev:



Position 1

Position 2

Position 3

Position 4






















Now let us try very briefly to describe the characteristics of the various levels represented by the columns of the table, for which we assume that they are laid out in an order of increasing complexity.


Level 1 and Contact Vector.


Level 1 relates to a primarily dependent subject, from all points of view, dependent on what occurs in its environment, consequently likely to be easily frustrated if the entourage does not respond to his or her expectation.


Level 2 and Sexual Vector.


The second positions of the circuits correspond to a time of autoerotic retrogression into fantasy (Mélon and Lekeuche, 12, p. 25); it is a specular, imaginary time. In this sense it marks a first autonomy compared to the preceding positions.


So on level 1 the idea of environment or milieu prevails, on level 2 appears the concept of the object, in particular the body perceived as a totality objectified, isolated from the background, in the field of vision, that underlines the imaginary dimension of the category of the object because with the object, it is a matter above all of the investment of an image, the image of the narcissistic body.


Level 3 and P Vector.


On level 3, the subject detaches himself or herself from the self-satisfaction of position 2, under the impact of the law: deprivation, exclusion and prohibition. The passage from 2 to 3 brings into play an operation of negation of the investments of objects conceived in the second position where prevails the fantasy dimension. The process of anti-cathexis, counterpart obligated of repression, gives access to external objects, this time real others. Position 3 is defined as the legalist-realistic-rational position.




Level 4 and Sch Vector.


Level 4 marks the appearance on stage of the subject in first person: subject with plans or projects, a subject that desires, and a subject of his own word. It is the time of the maximum autonomy of the subject, autonomy that takes a pathological turn (psychotic) if it is correlative of a rupture with the environment.


Level 4 is also potentially the level of sublimation and of creation where the subject projects to be free and responsible for his or her destiny conceived as a history to be made.

1.2 Indexes

1.2.1 Symptomatic Index (Sy%)

This index measures the relation expressed in percents of the sum of the symptomatic reactions (ambivalent and zero, ± and O) to the total sum of the factorial reactions. Normally, the index value ranges between 20 and 30. A low index (< 15) is the sign of a great rigidity.

A high index has the meaning interpreted only according to the index of acting.

1.2.2 Index of Acting (S0/±)

This is the index that Szondi calls “quotient of the tension of the tendencies” (Tendenzspannungquotient) and that indicates the product of the division of the total of the zero reactions by the total of the ambivalent reactions.


The ambivalent reactions refer to the subjective symptoms, the zero reactions to the objective symptoms. In a more precise way, the ambivalent reactions are indicative of a psychic work that favors the activity of thought at the expense of immediate discharge. They thus belong rather to the secondary process.


An ambivalent reaction can always be interpreted in the sense that the subject “has made a problem” of the question raised by the concerned tendency. For example, “m±” means that the subject raises the question of remaining or going away, maintaining the ties or cutting them, etc.


The zero reactions, on the other hand, mean that the drive tension is solved by the discharge in the behavior, the passage to the act, hysterical conversion, somatization…or via the repression or of another mechanism of defense that makes it possible to evacuate the tension at the same time as the problem that generates it.


For example, the reactions S + O, P O -, Sch - O, C O +, that are very frequently met, must be interpreted generally not in the sense of discharge but in that of the evacuation of the problem ad hoc, for example the evacuation of the questions of the lack of an object (s O), of the lack of investment (d O), of the consciousness of culpability (e O) or of the consciousness of the desire (p O).


Usually, the index of acting ranges between 1 and 3. When it is lower than 1, the intra-psychic conflict tends to be solved in the realm of mental thought. When the index is high, the resolution of the tensions is rather carried out on the mode of action or of conversion symptomatology.

1.2.3 Tension Index (S!)

The tension index “S!” is equivalent to the sum of “!”s. It has meaning only when combined with the other indexes, as we will explain it later.

1.2.4 Social Index

The social index is so to speak an index of neuroticism because its value increases with the strength of the reactions that indicate that the subject sublimates (h -) or harmoniously combines the two currents of sexuality (S ++), submits itself to the ethical (e +) and moral (hy -) requirements, accepts the reality within the meaning of reason (k -) and of the need to control (oneself) (k±), and is faithful or preserving (d -) in its relation to the objects of attachment (m+) that constitute its environmental framework.


The accentuations (!) make the social index fall to the degree that one can interpret them as the sign of an excess on the level of the drive demands (h+!, s+!, s -!, d -!, d+!, m+!), generator of frustration, or as well the demonstration of a radicalization of the mechanisms of defense (hy -!, k -!, p+!, etc.) that tips the scales on the side of an autarky [self-sustaining] narcissism, at the expense of object libido.


One establishes the social index in assigning of a + or - sign for each vectorial reaction according to whether the sign goes in the direction of a socially positive or negative attitude. Accentuations (!) are always rated negatively.


The social index is obtained by putting as the denominator the sum reactions (+) and (-) plus that of the accentuations, and placing as the numerator the sum of the positive reactions. The whole is multiplied by 100 to give the social percentage (soc%).


The normal value ranges between 40 and 50. Beyond 50%, the subject can be regarded as neurotic within the meaning of an excessive submission to the requirements of adaptation, to respect for authority, of responsibility and culpability, etc. An index lower than 30 indicates anti or asocial tendencies.


We give the following table that makes it possible to calculate the social index, “+” meaning socially positive. The other reactions are inevitably ” - “.


Table for the Calculation of the Social Index and the Hard (Dur) / Soft  (Moll) Index:






0  0





0  ±





0  +





0   -










±  0

D   +

D   +

D   +


±  ±


D   +

D   +


±  +

D   +

D   +

D   +


±   -



D   +

D   +






+  0





+  ±





+  +

D   +




+  -










-  0

D   +


D   +

D   +

-  ±

D   +



D   +

-  +





-   -



D   +



1.2.5 Index of Variability

This index measures the degree of total malleability of a drive structure. One obtains it by crediting with a point each change of factorial sign and by making the sum of the changes that have occurred for the eight factors in the series of ten profiles.


Normally, the index of variability (Var) ranges between 10 and 25. Lower than 10 means an excessive control amid an abnormal rigidity. Above 30 means either inconstancy, or lack of control, or disorganization or destructiveness.

1.2.6 Index of Disorganization

This index gives an idea of the intensity of the processes of cleavage.


For each factor, one makes note of the reactions + and -. One draws up a fractional relation with the denominator of which the total of these reactions is carried. For the numerator, one indicates the figure of the minority reaction (+ or -) by adding the sum of the accentuations (!) if necessary to it except for those that affect the ambivalent reactions (±!). One makes the sum of the eight numerators and denominators. The quotient obtained is the index of disorganization whose value is normally lower than 10. Above, it increases proportionally with the degree of destructiveness.

1.2.7 The Drive Formula and the Root Factors

There are distinguished three types of factors: symptomatic factors, the submanifest factors and the root factors.


According to Mr. Stassart, a factor is regarded as symptomatic when, in a series of 10 profiles, the sum of the zero and ambivalent reactions is higher or equal to 5. The root factors are those for which this sum is lower than 3.


For our part, we preferred to follow the criteria of Mr. Legrand (7, p. 94). For him, a factor is symptomatic whose sum of O and ± is equal or higher than 6. A factor is determined as submanifest or sublatent when the sum of O and ± lies between 2 and 5. Lastly, a factor is identified as a root factor when this sum is equal to 1 or O.


The root factors, owing to the fact that they correspond to a drive tension held relatively constant, play a dynamic part in the psychic economy.


For example, a subject who gives the reaction k - constantly is someone in whom repression constantly exerts its action, a subject who gives d+ all the time is someone who is perpetually in search of new attachments, etc.

1.2.8 Drive Positions

The theory of the circuits invites one to think that there exists an affinity between the drive positions – the reactions -- that occupy an identical row in each vector.


The question arises of knowing what the positions have in common:

1 C     : m+  h+    e -      p -

2 S     : d -   s -     hy+   k+

3 P     : d+    s+     hy -   k -

4 Sch : m -   h -     e+      p+


One can say, for example, that e - is the contact-thymic [thymic = emotional lability] position of the vector P, that k - is the neurotic-adaptive-realistic-legalist position of the Sch vector,… but it is necessary to be able to grab hold again as well as possible that which specifies these quartets.


1 C and “reversal into the opposite” (Die Verkehrung ins Gegenteil)


2 S and “turning towards one's own person” (Die Wendung gegen die eigene Person)


3 P and “repression” (Die Verdrängung)


4 Sch and “sublimation” (Die Sublimierung).

First Positions

They are those where the subject is the most dependent on the environment, where the need for a container, an envelope, a shoring up, a support, for a protector from excitation…is the major need. What here in question is: the need for attachment (m+), exclusive love (h+), the rage (e -) tied to frustration, and projection (p -) as the most economic defense put into motion in the situations of extreme distress (Hilflösigkeit).


The distress is indeed what threatens if the object of support, which Szondi so precisely named “Haltobjekt” [holding object], suddenly is missed.

       In German, “Halt” means stop as well as prop, support, succour, sustain, keep, cohesion, solidity… the “Haltobjekt” is this object that one needs to be stopped or be held upright and not to let one drift or to collapse.


The “reversal into the opposite” concerns above all the thymic reversals of mood (euphoria versus depression, m versus d) but more basically the reversal of love into hate, defense by hatred, being what dominates the psychic operation most rudimentarily characterized by a weak autonomy and a weak differentiation of the ego.

Second Positions

       The French translation of “Wendung gegen…” by “Reversal against…”, which received the blessing of Jean Laplanche and J. B. Pontalis, is not really correct in the degree where “Gegen,” in the German language, has two meanings: “against” and “with respect to.” As to “Wendung,” one cannot reasonably translate this word by reversal, which evokes a little too much the reversal of sadism into masochism. “Wendung” evokes above all the concept of “turn" within the meaning of turn, turning and turning around much more than of reversal. Therefore, “Wendung gegen…” has basically with Freud the meaning “returning towards oneself,” where there is originally no idea of self-aggression but much more the concept “to turn” the libido towards oneself that constitutes the essence of narcissism. What Freud presents as the second possible drive destiny is, without doubt, that of narcissism, more especially as “Drives and Destinies of the Drives” (1915) is written in the course of “For the Introduction of Narcissism” (1914).

The second positions correspond, in accordance with our translation of “Wendung gegen…,” with the “turn” of the libido “to the place of” one's own person, i.e. with the narcissistic "turning toward" such as Freud described it in “For the Introduction of Narcissism” (1914), turn that Lacan magnified in his “mirror stage” (1937).


The subject adopts an autoerotic conserving position (d -) that is strongly marked by anal retention, at the same time as it falls in love with its double -- its specular image -- produced in the primal scene of seduction (s -); he remains fixed at this scene, tends to reproduce it in spite of the interdictions that are opposed to it, puts himself forward towards and against all (Geltungsdrang), is compulsively pushed to put himself in a spectacle (hy +: “Sich-zur-Schau-Stellen”) while portraying himself as a “character” (k +) within the sense of the Latin “Persona” that means “mask,” the mask in question being intended to perpetuate the image of a glorious body, object sufficient for himself and at the same time as the missing object -- “phallus” -- for the other.


The hieratic “poses” of the catatonic, even if they have became rare today (whereas they were very frequent formerly), illustrate perfectly this compulsion of the subject to be portrayed as statues of himself or herself (k +).


The accent put on body narcissism, still safe from castration, is what one finds in the core of melancholy, of perversions, especially the masochist and the fetishister, of the most specific character traits since they have a traumatic-scar basis but also, in part, in sublimation, in so far as this aims at creating objects whose perfection is supposed to join the unaltered perfection of the specular imago.

Third Positions

These positions proceed in the direction of repression on the condition of understanding this as the operation that consists with negating the narcissistic specular imago -- imaginary by definition -- and with turning away as a whole from all that is imaginary by investing preferentially in material reality (d +), by orienting the libido in the direction of the domination of the objects outside of the ego (s+), by controlling the erotic affects by rejection of any kinds of sentimentality considered to be ridiculous (hy -) and by massively favoring the perception of exterior reality that becomes the standards for all reality (k -: “A fact is better than a “Lord Mayor”). This position can be considered impartially as realistic, legalistic, rational or “fatalistic.”


It is the position that we call neurotic-normal, that which prevails absolutely during the latency period and that, later on, with the help of a certain regression (passage from m - to m+), characterizes most of the general population. As it is the majority pattern that pays court to the media, it is enough to turn on the TV to have an idea about it.

Fourth Positions

These positions are in connection with sublimation in the sense where sublimation implies a certain detachment in relation to the environment (m -), a desexualization with a “transfer of passion” (h -), a certain need for “reparation” as Mélanie Klein described it so well (e +) and the transposition of primary narcissism onto the court -- secondary narcissism -- of the ego ideal (p+).


Sublimation -- as the clinical facts so often show is close to psychosis, in so far as the desexualization and the withdrawal of object libido that it implies -- always risks opening up the vacuum of a psychosis.


Jean Mélon proposed to calculate the proportions of the four types of drive positions, which makes it possible to have an idea of their quantitative distribution, “to measure” their respective weight and starting from there to work out an original typology that takes into account the idea of drive destiny.


According to whether one or the other of the first, second, third, or fourth drive positions is relatively higher compared to the others, one can describe some cases of simple figures that correspond to easily identifiable and structurally organized clinical pictures in a well differentiated manner:


1. The ideally balanced table where all the positions are found in equal proportions:

1 2 3 4


2. Seriously unbalanced tables in the sense:


a) 1 2 3 4

where the extreme dependence with respect to the objects of the environment easily involves disorders of mood and behavior (thymo-psychopathics),


b) 1 2 3 4

where the narcissistic demand is exacerbated, determining perverse behaviors or freed from any respect for limits, particularly sexual ones, intrusion being the rule; this is the case in hysterical “extravagance”;


c) 1 2 3 4

where legalism, realism and rationality are constantly called upon, producing the traditional conditions of the obsessional “character neurosis”;




d) 1 2 3 4

where positioning is typically schizoid, as one can see it, especially in adolescence, in the “disease of idealism,” and in many of anorexics’ mentalities.


3. The most frequent neurotic-normal tables, associated with these positions:


a) 1 2 3 4

characteristics of the “adapted” subjects within the meaning of common socialization, combining the submission to the moral interdictions (hy -), the respect for reality (k -), the active investment in the objects of the outside world in their material concreteness (d+ s+), the emotional dependence with respect to the objects of support (m+), a strong need to be loved (h+), an intolerance for frustration with a propensity toward rage (e -) and the prevalence of the collective concrete ideals (p -) over the ideals of personal development in the spiritual or ethical meaning of the term;


b) 1 2 3 4

characteristics of the sublimating subjects with whom the desexualization (h - s -) and the withdrawal to being outside of the world (d - m -) are compensated by the narcissistic need to create (k+ p+) and the impassioned exaltation of affects (e+ hy+);


c) 1 2 3 4

rarer situation of the “obsessional” subjects in whom the isolation between the thought and the affects has the effect of “making mental” all the problems, particularly those of the control of reality (k±), of the possession of the object (s±), of the attachment to the things in general (d±) and the expression of the affects (hy ±).


1.2.9 Forms of Existence

From 1960, in collaboration with Armin Beeli, Szondi developed the method of diagnosis known as the forms of existence. There are 17 of them that corresponds each to a particular constellation of the eight factors of the test. With each form of existence corresponds a relatively specific diagnosis that returns to the great traditional syndromes of psychopathology but also in tables considered as normative (forms 16 and 17).


For more ease of use, we used the shortened form of the “Computerized Diagnosis of the Modes of Existence” worked out by Felix Studer and Jean Mélon, which we reproduce further on.

1.3 Periodic Interpretation of the Drive Circuits

We will still largely call upon the thesis of Martine Stassart (15) to clarify this interpretation.


This interpretation takes account here of the sense of the meaning, progressive or regressive, that occurs in each vector, work on the drive, in agreement with the theory of the drive circuits, which it exploits according to its own logic.


Each vector thus produces four periods indicated by Roman numerals, according to whether the factor more charged in + or in -, called dominant, belongs to one or another level -- or period -- of the circuit.













































The Periodic Reading of the Circuits
































































































































































































































































































For example, in the vector of the Contact (C), if m+ is an occupied position in a stable manner and quantitatively higher than d+ or d-, one poses in theory that one is found in the first period of the circuit of the Contact; if d- dominates, one is in the second period and so on, the fourth period implying that the dominant position is m-.


The factor dominating can be qualified for modulating in the sense that it controls, determines, and modulates the meaning that the complementary reaction takes, the reaction d in the example given here.


According to whether the reaction in d is zero (O), negative (-), positive (+) or ambivalent (±), the dominant-modulating reaction m+ remains, one considers that one is in the first times -- or moments or stages -- (C O+), second (C - +), third (C ++) or fourth (C ±+) of the first period of the circuit of the Contact drive.


When the infant is at the breast or when the breast is close, immediately available, the need for clinging to the mother can vary in intensity -- from m+ to m+!!! -- but the question of the lack of an object does not arise because the events occur as if the infant absolutely did not doubt that the object, real in fact, is at any moment available. If the object comes to be missing, the infant will express his or her need for the breast by agitation, cries…. And, as Freud very rightly noted, that will change, since this is above all his or her mood [humor]. Although the term used by Freud is here, not Stimmung [mood; in tune] but Gemüt [disposition], it is good for the basic way of “finding oneself to be” -- well or poorly -- of Befindlichkeit [feelings], and that it an issue in the Contact vector.


It is only in second time of the first period of the circuit of the contact (C-+) that in “retaining” (d-) the real breast engramme, its memory trace, the child will be able to hallucinate the breast and to obtain an autoerotic satisfaction. In other words the passage into d- implies the entry concerned the work of the representation and retrogression into the fantasy that underlies autoerotic satisfaction.


The second time of the first period of contact (C-+, I 2) can be considered hallucinatory, autoerotic, narcissistic or imaginary cases. It is a time controlled by the pleasure principle.


In the third time, the failure of hallucinatory satisfaction on the one hand, the necessity imposed by reality -- the “Not des Lebens” -- or authority on the other hand, will push the child to seek in reality (d+) an object of replacement -- an “Ersatz” -- likely to enable him to find a satisfaction similar to the first satisfaction. As long as the wish to find again this satisfaction dominates the drive life, one does not leave the first period, dominated by the tendency m+.


Thus, the reaction C ++, I 3, is that of a subject who is perpetually in search of an object from external reality that could return “lost happiness" to him.


This third time of the first period of the circuit of Contact can be sometimes considered realistic, objective, “necessary” or illusory, but always driven by the principle of reality in the sense as understood by Freud.


It is because the first object, the real breast, is lost forever and can be found again neither in hallucination nor through its innumerable Ersätze [substitutes], that a fourth time has come to succeed the first three.


In this fourth time (C±+, I 4), doubt is set up as for the possibility of never finding an object that would make it possible to find the first and complete satisfaction. The object is lost for good.  The ambivalence that has occurred in the search of the object (d±) causes eventually the crisis (C ±± > C O±) that leads to call into question the principle even of the ideal of the first satisfaction and the object of which it was the bearer, i.e., finally, the primal mother, Urmutter.


If the subject continues its evolution in the cycle of the Contact drive, one enters into the second period, whose first time is characterized by the narcissistic return to one's own body.


If, as we did for the first period by calling upon the mythical relation to the breast and we hold here for a paradigm the installation in the anal phase of libido development, we represent the first time of the second period (C - O, II 1) as the moment when the child in imagination forms a union with his faeces experienced as a narcissistic prolongation of his own body, invaluable product among all products, as the miser forms a union with his purse and its contents, the mother with her child, the father with his family, the workman with his work, the artist with his work, the man with his fatherland, his or her religion, his or her ideas, etc.


The second time (C - +, II 2) where d- controls or modulates m+, corresponds to the need to join again the contact with the surrounding world, narcissistic sufficiency that characterizes the position C - O having become as intolerable to it as was C - + of the first period. One sees well here that, according to whether one is in the second or the first time of the circuit of contact, the same reaction C - + receives different, even radically opposite, meanings. This is one of the major difficulties of the interpretation of the Szondi Test; one easily sees this from this example,


Because the “demand to the other” or “the desire for the desire of the other” fails in a manner similar to what occurred in search for an object of replacement (C++) and because the subject eventually comes from that to think that it would do better without the others and thus would withdraw from the world (C - -, II 3), doubt emerges on the question of the relation to the desire for the other (m±), confounded here with one’s relation to the world -- “the world of worthlessness for him or her whether I would be there or whether that I would not be there!” -- this doubt about the question of the relation to the world, of its importance, of its value or its necessity, introduces the subject into the fourth time of the second period (C - ±, II 4).


We could prolong these considerations until the end and provide the most illustrative possible examples for the fourteen following periods.


We hope to have been sufficiently clear so that our procedure will be understood when we will utilize this method.  Still, let us say that in accordance with this theory, the most specific positions are, according to the periods, for each of the vectors:


•         C I 1      that is to say C o+

•         S II 2      that is to say S + -

•         P III 3    that is to say  P + -

•         Sch IV 4                       that is to say          Sch ±+


The above could be translated in the following way: a subject is never as much “in” the contact position that in C o+, sexual position than in S + -, ethical-morale than in P + - and subject than in Sch ±+.


The fourth time of each period is always, as we hope to have made clear, the moment when the subject returns to himself, puts questions about what has suddenly made a problem in a particular area and thinks about it, in short comes from there to place himself as “subject of” the drive as much as “subject to” the drive, even “subject against” (gegen) the drive, which induces us to retain and to characterize this moment with the qualifier of “subject,” the third time that can be retrospectively described as “object,” the second of “narcissistic,” and the first of “pre-object.” Other qualifications remain possible with the condition of sticking to groups of homogeneous or homologous concepts, such as, for example, the series posed by Freud in his study on Schreber:


·         autoeroticism > narcissism > homosexuality > heterosexuality;

or elsewhere:

·         constancy principle > pleasure principle > reality principle > beyond the pleasure principle;

·         ego-reality of the beginning > ego pleasure (Lust-Ich) > ego reality (Real-Ich) > final ego-reality (Endgultiges Real-Ich)….

1.4 Average Profiles

The average profiles, such as we consider them, is an innovation based on our knowledge. They are not explained in the thesis of Mr. Stassart.


We make the sum of the rough choices in each polarity of each factor with both the foreground and the background [The background is the Experimental Complementary Plan (E.K.P.) not the Theoretical Plan (Th.K.P.) that is the opposite of the foreground]. Then, we make the sum of + for the foreground and the background and we obtain a sub-total for +. We do the same way for -.


We make the sum of these two sub-totals to obtain the number of total choices for the factor with the foreground and the background. This total is done the same for all the factors. Then we convert into a percentage for the total and the sub-total.


































































































[fo = foreground   bk = background (E.K.P.)]


Thus, the total for h = 60. Therefore, (39/60) x 100 gives us 65% for h-. In the same way, the sub-total for the foreground gives us 12 + 21 = 33. And (21/33) x 100 gives us approximately 64% h- with the foreground.


Finally if we do this procedure for all of the factors, we obtain: 1 - a total percentage for the most important polarity of the factor, 2 - a percentage that gives the most important polarity of the factor for the foreground and 3 - a percentage that gives the most important polarity for the background.


For example, by considering only the highest percentages, the total for h is 65% in favor for h- ; it is 64% for h - for the foreground and of 67% for h- for the background.


Once all these percentages are calculated, it is invaluable for knowing to situate them compared to the accentuations. It is in this sense that we had the rather simple idea to take again the basic proportions. What is especially interesting is to know the higher limits of each “stage” (±, ±!, + or -, !, !!, !!!).


· ± is obtained by a ratio whose higher limit is 3/2 (or 2/3). Therefore, with 5 choices, 3 are placed as the highest level: if we divide 3 by the total of the choices (5), we obtain 60%.


· ±! is obtained by a ratio of 4/2 (or 2/4), therefore 6 choices to the total: 4/6 = 66%.


· Reactions + and - within their higher limit are obtained by a ratio of 3/1 or 1/3, therefore 4 choices to the total: by dividing 3 by 4, we obtain as higher limit 75%.


· An accentuation is obtained by the ratio 4/1 or 1 /4: thus 4 /5 give us 80%. Two accentuations: 5/1 or 1 /5: thus 5/6, i.e. 83%.


Let us summarize:

             ±          : up to 60%
                    ±!         : from 61% up to 66%
                    + or -   : from 67% up to 75%
                    !           : from 76% up to 80%
                    !!         : from 81% up to 83%
                    !!!        : from 84%


The average profile in this case will be:

Total:                   h±!           e±      hy±    k±     p±     d±     m±
Foreground:         h±!     s+           hy±!   k±     p±     d±     m±
Background:        h-       s-            hy±             d±!    m±


We are sorry to have taken as an example a “monotonous” profile with a majority of ± but this is not the case for all profiles and for the outstanding differences that are made clear quickly.


The analysis of the average profiles should be done as usual since the basic proportions are respected.


In the same sense of simplicity, we chose an interpretation in the term of position in the drive circuits for each factor with the foreground and with the background on the basis of figures obtained by the sum of the rough choices.


That gives us figure 1 (first position) for h+, m+, e- and p-.

figure 2 for s-, d-, hy+ and k+.

figure 3 for s+, d+, hy- and k-.

and figure 4 for h-, m-, e+ and p+.


The translation of the preceding table gives us this:

            Fo     Bk                                  Fo     Bk

h          4        4        65% 4         s        3        2        55% 3
e                    4        1-4   53% 4           hy      3        2        53% 3        
p          4        4        55% 4         k        2        3        52% 3        
m         4        1        52% 1         d        2        3        55% 3

[Fo = foreground     Bk = background (E.K.P.]


We see from the start where are located the more fusional positions (1), those where the realization of oneself is most advanced (4), those where the pleasure principle is dominating (2) and in those where the reality principle prevails (3).


We grouped them in such manner to see the factors' “conditioners” or directors (h, e, p, m) and the factor mediators (s, hy, k, d) vis-à-vis each other. The factor mediators are those by which, in the circuit, one passes between the two extremes (positions 1 and 4). A factor mediator in 2 is closer to a starting state (1) while a factor in 3 is closer to a final state (4).


We can finally supplement this small table by the total percentages that give the most important polarity of the factor and that is retranslated in terms of position in the circuit by a figure ranging between 1 and 4 that accompanies the percentage.

2. Three Levels of Analysis

The first level consists of general data that locate the creator in his development: they are some reference marks. Following come the indices of the test. This is the “macroscopic” point of view.


The second level is characterized by the “average” profiles and the interpretation according to the positions in the circuits. This is an intermediate level.


The third level is the move into the “microscopic” point of view. We will endeavor through the comments to capture the possible significances of the various profiles. We will see in what ways theory can clarify the interpretation of the “beacons” of the creative process. We will stick to a selection of profiles judged to be the most “enlightening.” Thus we would not be tied down with an analysis “profile by profile” with commentaries because that would be tiresome and more cumbersome than useful since the mass of information would be enormous.

The Accompanying Framework

1. Final Purpose

This framework was used in order to be able to determine various likely aspects in the process of creation. The idea is “to stuff” the profiles with information likely to clarify them. We did not know how to establish criteria of evaluation parallel to the testing. We trusted our personal experience that is the fruit of a great concentration for several years at the side of people prone to be creative. A heading “Commentaries” finishes the framework. It is used as blank space for non-formulated features in quantitative terms.


This background though incomplete and subjective has the merit to launch some landmarks with which the creator will position himself.

2. Description

This framework consists of seven continuums and we look at each one from a bipolar aspect of what we suspect to be important in creation.


Each continuum includes two paradoxical [antinomic] poles of which a maximum is fixed arbitrarily at 100% on each side. In the middle of this continuum resides the point “zero” where the two poles meet without either one or the other prevailing. The subject is invited to mark on the continuum where he is positioned. He or she can do it as he or she wishes (one or two crosses for example). The subject can also make comments on his or her choices.


The instruction stipulates to the subject to mark the continuums depending on his or her frame of mind at the time of the testing. However, especially at the beginning, we noticed that the subjects marked according to a kind of “assessment” of the last days that preceded the testing. We are unaware to what degree this bias of evaluation of our subjects has affected the precision of the data.


Continuum Number 1

Two poles: the world of the others and one's world with oneself.


“The world of the others” includes the collection of the rules and social conventions in force: the desire for sharing with others, for being available, for not having too many personal requirements. The world turns and one with it in a communion. It is also the strength of the view [regard] of the Other on oneself. The reality of the others and the probability of social reality are things in which one participates.


“One's world with oneself” includes all that is made specifically part of one's world. This is the interest for one's personal concerns. One’s personal view is stronger than that of others. What relates to the Other is eliminated; what only remains is what concerns oneself. The verisimilitude of social reality is refuted. There is no more participation.

Continuum Number 2

Two poles: attachment and detachment.


It is the point of view of the Other that is used here: attachment to the Other and detachment in relation to the Other.


The attachment concerns what connects us, with the result that one tends towards something and that one approaches someone or some thing. It is the establishment of a process that binds us to this someone or thing. The detachment disconnects us from this thing or person; one moves away from there; that releases us from our relation with this thing that becomes less important, almost invisible.


For example, in the relation with the Other, the attachment is expressed by the fact of thinking about the Other, of wanting to be with the Other, and of having difficulty being separate from him or her; something is missing when the Other is not there, and internally, a force drives him or her to find the Other again.


The detachment will be expressed by the reverse of the attachment. In particular, by an intense flow of questions that puts in suspense the participation with the thing thought about. A question opens a conceptual breach in the participative bond with a thing. The area of the questions is all the more original as the detachment operates. There is a kind of "magic in the air”; one does not "stick” to reality. This is the strength of one's own view of oneself and of things. The verisimilitude of the world is eliminated in the area where the detachment acts.

Continuum Number 3

Two poles: the desire for conforming and the desire to create.


This is the tendency “to return to one's allotted place” or to leave it. This is the difference between convergent thought towards the standards and a thought diverging from the standards.

Continuum Number 4

Two poles: the feeling of dispersion of oneself and that of unity in oneself.


The feeling of dispersion would consist in feeling vague, confused, incoherent, as if one were “parceled out bit by bit.” There is a lack of internal unity. The things do not go from oneself; one badly has “to gather one's nougats.” The feeling of unity is opposite to that of dispersion. We will be able consequently to have an idea of the subjective schisms.

Continuum Number 5

Two poles: anxiety and interior peace.


Anxiety or the absence of anxiety prevails. By anxiety, we understand what the majority of people understand. We do not seek to be precise as to the definition of an anguish; we simply want that the creator marks near the pole “anxious” when he or she feels anxious. That signals to us his or her difficulties.

Continuum Number 6

Two poles: to exist everyday spontaneously or exist everyday with effort.


To exist with effort daily is to make an effort to maintain the different things that make the daily routine as one goes about, washing up, getting up, preparing a meal and eating it, returning a visit, going to work,…. All these things require an effort when one moves towards the pole “to exist with effort,” an effort greater than usual.


To exist spontaneously is to live everyday in a spontaneous way, without there being a question of making an effort; “that rolls along,” it is automatic, life runs on and one with it.

Continuum Number 7

Two poles: the absence of a creative flow in oneself or a creative flow that is intense.


Creative flow consists in this flow of ideas, thoughts, images, sounds…that would resemble a river that one feels to flow in one's being. All these things would have as a characteristic to be in phase with the creative research of the person. The flow of this river is variable.


For example, an intense flow for a composer would be an overflowing imagination in order to put in song an idea, a feeling. The words would flow abundantly, rich in powerful associations, percussion….


We indicate in the comments that creative production is different from creative flow in oneself in the sense where the production is the concrete realization of a finished work.

Methodological Approach

1. General Information

A methodological approach is a question of finding recurring information and a guiding thread through the various parameters put in place. Or what is constant, and what is a variation. For example, for Jeanne, this inconstancy follows very closely the various stages that she considers necessary to create or to renew contact with the Other.


The stable and redundant reference marks are often absent: that moves a lot, that is variable, and that evolves and adapts to the new data of their experience.


The emergence of a favorable idea with the creative process can occur at any time; the capture of this idea, on the other hand, can occur later. Patrick captures the whirling movement of his spoon in his coffee and modifies the movement of his brush when he paints. Jeanne is taken by an “interesting” form by looking at peelings.


Very often, the tiredness of the body comes to stop the process. The rhythm is variable because each day brings its harvest of modifications for which it is necessary to adapt, and the creative process does also. Therefore, it is not a necessarily continuous-homogeneous process, and the profiles, even with fixed intervals, will not capture successive stages that are followed in Indian file. Sometimes, nothing will be done during a week; another day, two hours of the day will be devoted to creation and the remainder of the day will pass and finish with one in front of the TV in the evening. Other times, a creative thrust will require more time for oneself, and the person will be unavailable for three days. Therefore, we observe specific, impulsive creative times and what we will call the most continuous creative periods.


To determine a very variable process in time is difficult. Rhythmic creation differs from one person to another and within a person. That can make the research of the guiding thread very complex. The question becomes: how to encompass something that does not have a straight course?

By continual travelling back and forth among the theoretical elements, the clinical perspectives, and the reflections of the creator and ours and thanks also to the richness of a long time experience as well as an always attentive listening -- all that is incorporated in a meaningful constellation around which revolves what will be registered later on when the configuration of the core allows it.

All that raises the question of the framework of interpretation from the time of the testing. One starts with a theory that makes it possible to understand more or less what happens. Then, the interchange between the theoretical and the empirical ends in a refining of the framework that becomes more and more precise. That is facilitated when the creator has a view and an experience of his creative life. It is a matter to some extent of a perception of oneself consolidated by a capacity to verbalize this experience. That requires a suitable vocabulary. Sometimes, our subjects will be precise, sometimes they will be very vague.


We hope to find these precisions from the “seasoned veterans” of creation. They traversed the roads of creation and its pitfalls to arrive at a better management of their process, i.e. a greater control, from where comes the term of sculptured creation. On our side, our experience of life in a creative environment is a major asset to accompany these people at the time of the testing. Only so that the creator may speak to us about his experience, he must have a certain confidence in our procedure.


The psychologist is not always welcome among creators, and this attitude seems, sometimes, justified by “unhappy” experiences. It is not rare that a creator finds himself in the “remote regions” of society especially in his youth and finds that he must encounter psychologists for unfortunate events without being able to communicate his manner of being for innumerable reasons, but first of which is the absence of a real meeting between the psychologist and the creator. This dissertation is an attempt to surmount this “wall.”

2. Interviews and Testing

The laying out of the test in the meeting went through a demystification of the psychiatric approach in order to lead to a more philosophical approach. The reason for this is simple: generally, the word “psychiatry” is associated with “control” and “repression” in the mind of the majority of the people whom we met. 


The testing was placed within a framework where the interview and the meeting came first. These talks, generally, had a function of reinsurance as well for them as for us: this space for talking opened up a common space. We insist on the fact that it was our curiosity and our thirst for more that led us to speak at length with them. We tried to be the least academic as possible.


We little standardized the meetings in order to have a greater flexibility with what occurred (the amount of time depended on their availability, the course of the interview took the color of what was happening that day, the questions emerged as the exchange of ideas took form) apart from the fact that, for the majority, the testing took place at the end of the interview in order to give first place to the aspect encountered than to the study of the viewpoint on creators.


Therefore, roughly speaking, the interview was followed by the testing itself, sometimes still followed by a discussion. We went along with their subjects generally. We were not always able to shift the topic from the test. These cases illustrate the fact that it is not desirable to force a frame of mind not very compatible with the test for the simple reason that that indicated to the creator our respect for his or her sensitivity. Generally, these people spoke about their creation and explained to us their experiences.


It is interesting to note that, from the point of view of the creator, the fact of meeting a student who is making his dissertation introduced the dimension of a person with their similar age, their own manner of speaking, and their own inquiry into the sphere of the creator. This is not negligible for creators who often try to escape the influence from reality and the Other: our body is a space and time impossible to circumvent from their perception; the presence of the vibrations of our voice and our gestures will direct his or her sensibility towards a seizure of which rightly he or she tries to go beyond.


That means that when the creator met us, he or she “prepared” his or her mentality to receive us and sometimes his or her creative push can be so strong that, sometimes, we could simply disturb it by our presence.


Thus, to move towards a creator is also to introduce the dimension of the Other into his creative universe; it is sometimes difficult to anchor him or her in reality because of his galloping sensitivity.


A last point relates to the use of the Szondi test to determine a process. Jeanne formulated the fact that it is embarrassing of suspecting among these people (photographs of the test) the problems, that is to say, to see themselves in the “abnormals.” To approach creation with the faces of abnormality was for Jeanne misleading in the sense where she can deduce that abnormality is appropriate to determine the creative process; this is what she rebels against. That required personal work by her to get beyond this barrier. She concluded by saying that it is necessary to forget their abnormality although that leaps to one's attention. Finally, for her, all rests on the confidence that she puts in our procedure.


This matter shows that the use of a test, the procedure of the dissertation in itself, can cause an unconscious selection of the information received in the sense of a screening of the essence of the creative phenomenon. The establishment of the confidence “of our subjects” on the basis of personal integrity is for us a methodological point of first importance.


















1- DERI S.(1949). Introduction au test de Szondi [Introduction to the Szondi Test]. Traduction de Jean Mélon. Bruxelles, De Boeck Université, 1991.

2- FREUD S.(1914). Pour introduire le narcissisme [On Narcissism: An Introduction]. In La vie sexuelle, Paris, PUF, 1970.

3- FREUD S. (1923). Le moi et le ça [The Ego and the Id]. In Essais de Psychanalyse. Paris, Payot, 1973.

4- FREUD S.(1921). Psychologie collective et analyse du moi [Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego]. In Essais de Psychanalyse. Paris, Payot, 1973.

5- FREUD S. (1912). Pour introduire la discussion sur l'onanisme [For an Introduction to the Discussion on Onanism]. In Résultats, Idées, Problèmes I. Paris, PUF, 1980.

6- LAPLANCHE J. et PONTALIS J.B. Fantasme originaire, fantasmes des origines, origine du fantasme [Nature of Fantasies, Fantasies of Origins, Origin of Fantasies]. Les Temps Modernes, 215, 1964.

7- LEGRAND M. Léopold Szondi, son test, sa doctrine [Léopold Szondi, His Test, His Doctrine]. Mardaga, Bruxelles, 1979.

8- MELON J. Théorie et pratique du Szondi [Theory and Practice of Szondi], Liège, Presses Universitaires de Liège, 1975.

9- MELON J. Le point de vue szondien sur la période de latence [The Point of View on the Period of Latency]. Feuillets psychiatriques de Liège, 13, 1980.

10- MELON J. Positions pulsionnelles, fantasmes originaires et système des pulsions [Drive Positions, Primal Fantasies, and System of Drives]. Feuillets Psychiatriques de Liège, 1980, 13, 1. Une version abrégée de cet article a paru  sous le titre "Fantasmes originaires selon Freud et système szondien des pulsions" dans Psychanalyse à l'Université, Paris, 1980, 5, 20, pp.673-680.

11- MELON J. Révision de la doctrine szondienne des pulsions [Revision of the Szondian Doctrine of Drives]. Montpellier, Fortuna, Bulletin du groupe d'études szondiennes de Montpellier, septembre 1987, n° 3.

12- MELON J. et LEKEUCHE P. Dialectique des Pulsions [Dialectic of Drives]. De Boeck Université, Bruxelles, 1990.

13- SCHOTTE J. Notice pour introduire le problème structural de la Shicksalsanalyse [Notice to Introduce the Structural Problems of Fate Analysis]. Zurich, Hans Huber, Szondiana 5, 1964, pp.114-201. Repris dans Jacques Schotte. Szondi avec Freud. Sur la voie d'une psychiatrie pulsionnelle. Bruxelles, De Boeck-Université, 1990.

14- SCHOTTE J. Recherches nouvelles sur les fondements de l'Analyse du Destin [New Researches on the Foundations of the Analysis of Destiny]. Notes de cours 1975-76. Archives Szondi, Louvain-la-Neuve.

15- STASSART M. Adolescence, post-adolescence et processus décisionnel - une étude szondienne [Adolescence, Post-Adolescence and Decision Processes – A Szondian Study]. Thèse de Doctorat, U.L.G, Liège, 1995. Les monographie du CEP, Les Editions du CEP (Centre d’Etudes Pathoanalytiques), Bruxelles, 1995.

16- SZONDI L. Schicksalsanalytische Therapie [Fate Analysis Therapy]. Bern, Hans Huber, 1963.

















































































Table of Contents

Theoretical Outlines...................................................................................... 46

1. Definition.................................................................................................................. 46

·  Difference Between Creativity and Creation............................................. 47

2. Personality of the Creator......................................................................................... 47

3. Theoretical Panorama of the Outlines...................................................................... 48

4. Heroic Identification of the Creator.......................................................................... 51

5. Workings of the Unconscious and the Conscious in Creation................................... 52

6. Phases of the Work of Creation According to Anzieu............................................... 53

7. Szondi Theoretical Approach - Empirical................................................................. 55

Focusing on the C and Sch vectors........................................................ 59

THE EGO VECTOR.................................................................................................... 59

p -.................................................................................................................................. 60

k +................................................................................................................................. 61

Illustration Through the Adolescent...................................................................... 64

p +................................................................................................................................ 65

k -.................................................................................................................................. 66

The k -Position and Society................................................................................... 66

THE C VECTOR......................................................................................................... 67

m -................................................................................................................................. 67

m +............................................................................................................................... 68

d+................................................................................................................................. 68

d -.................................................................................................................................. 69

The diagram of the cycle............................................................................ 70

1, AXES....................................................................................................................... 70

2. QUARTERS............................................................................................................. 71

1. Quarter k + p -.......................................................................................................... 71

1. Passage from k- to k+............................................................................................ 72

2. The “Break” [La faille].......................................................................................... 74

2.1 The “wound with the other”............................................................................ 74

2.2 Hate................................................................................................................. 76

2.3 Possible Psychoanalytical Meanings of the Break [La Faille]........................ 78

Symbolic Murder of the Father....................................................................... 79

2.4 Philosophical Interpretation of the Break [La Faille]..................................... 80

2.4.1 “Que philosopher est apprendre à naître”.............................................. 80

2.4.2 Comments.............................................................................................. 83

2.5 Illustration of the Break [la Faille] by a Profile.............................................. 87

3. To Perceive Is to See the Difference..................................................................... 89

4. The Sensibility and the Perception........................................................................ 90

5. To Startle [Sideration]........................................................................................... 93

6. Detachment or “Disengaging”.............................................................................. 93

7. The Capture........................................................................................................... 95

8. Sensibility and the Work of the Senses................................................................. 99

Meanings of the Specularity................................................................................ 100

9. Sedimentation..................................................................................................... 101





2. Quarter k + p +...................................................................................................... 102

1. Relation with Oneself......................................................................................... 102

The Absolute Aspect of the Narcissistic Relation........................................ 102

The Relative Aspect of the Narcissistic Relation......................................... 103

2. The Creative Fiction Is a Differentiating Fiction................................................ 103

3. The Search for a Lack of Differentiation............................................................ 105

4. Essence: the Total Choice................................................................................... 106

5. In What Way Is an Other a Creation? ................................................................ 110

6. Autopoièse.......................................................................................................... 110

3. Quarter k - p +........................................................................................................ 111

1. How to Go Beyond the Desire for Omnipotence? ............................................ 113

Analysis of G. Bonnet on Narcissism.................................................................. 114

A. The Disappearance and the Cult of the Phallus...................................... 115

B. Nemesis and the Punishment of Narcissus.............................................. 116

C. The Evil Eye or Shock in the Recoil........................................................ 117

D. Realism of the Unconscious and the Disappearance............................... 118

E. History of Leonardo de Vinci................................................................. 119

F. The Recoil and the Narcissistic Apparatus.............................................. 120

G. The Shield of Perseus.............................................................................. 121

H. The Other, Love and Nothingness: a Waltz in Three Time..................... 121

2. Effects on the Creative Process.......................................................................... 122

2.1 The Disappearance of Oneself....................................................................... 122

2.2 The Limit to the Creative Process................................................................. 122

2.3 Attachment.................................................................................................... 125

2.3.1 Hypnosis - Love - Point of View of Freud......................................... 125

2.3.2 Theoretical Base.................................................................................. 126

2.4 Dialectical of the Attachment and Detachment............................................ 129

2.4.1 Philosophical Interpretation................................................................ 129

2.4.2 The Thought Must Be Braked............................................................. 129

2.5 Love of the Other.......................................................................................... 133

4. Quarter k - p -......................................................................................................... 135

Articulation of interpretation according to Maldiney - Mélon       137

1. Fusco and Catatonia................................................................................. 138

2. Work-Made [Faire-oeuvre]...................................................................... 139

3. Ego Systole and Ego Diastole.................................................................. 140

4. Ontogenesis and p -.................................................................................. 141

5. To Create and Tension in p...................................................................... 142

6. The Fault [Faille*] and Psychosis............................................................. 142

7. Abstraction and Einfühlung [Empathy*]................................................. 142

8. Crossing of the Fault [la faille]................................................................. 144

9. The k Function......................................................................................... 144

10. The k - Position...................................................................................... 145

11. The k+ Position...................................................................................... 145

12. Identification with the Primitive Father................................................. 147

13. Limit to Creation.................................................................................... 149

Discussion............................................................................................................... 150



Passage from the lack of differentiation to differentiation in Creation................................................................................................................................................. 168

1. Facts.................................................................................................................... 168

2. Principle............................................................................................................... 169

3. The Degree of the Creative Process.................................................................... 170

4. The “Threat of Jocasta”....................................................................................... 170

Myth of Oedipus and Jocasta...................................................................... 171

5. The Course of Individuation = The Creative Course.......................................... 175

6. Creation as Psychic Work Producing the Difference.......................................... 176

7. Symbolic Castration............................................................................................ 177

8. Sculptured Creation............................................................................................ 179

Illustrations...................................................................................................... 181

Bibliography........................................................................................................ 186

































Theoretical Approach

Theoretical Outlines

1. Definition

There exists many approaches of creation and we think that each approach has its type of definition.


During his seminars, Jean Mélon (18) proposed this:

Whoever says creation means a break with something repetitive. The creator is alone since he belongs apart from the repetition.


With this point of view, we are from the start projected into the assumption of our report. Indeed, the break with the repetition supposes a logic of distance. A distancing is placed with respect to what is repeated. We can also encircle the known, the social-like repetition of conventions and rules whose representational inertia is one of the principal factors.


Once apart from the repetition, the creator only finds himself alone not to repeat. An individual says “no” and rejects the scenarios that make the majority of people to function; he must find for each day that passes his ration of meanings to continue. He knows the stakes involved in such a break. Not only that he generally will take his distances in relation to others, but that he goes to distance himself also from his personal representations that slow him down in his progress. This is a double schism with the root, i.e. faith in the other (con - fiance [confidence]: with la foi [faith]).


Often in the nudity of his being, the creator passes by the “small door of destiny,” alone among the others and alone in himself.


If we are to exist and to be human, creation is not human and it does not form part of the human species that obeys the repetition of the “human” program; on the other hand, a being can take on this opening to the tangent of the spirit.


To create is a drama because it carries its flaw [faille]. The human being functions with a weakness [dans une faille], and the creator does not forget this. Somebody often tells us that the human species is a species that does not have a chance. And if this “misfortune” were a chance? That must resemble in that the point of view of a creator.

·                 Difference Between Creativity and Creation

According to an extract of Proust, Didier Anzieu (3, p. 4) says that:

Creativity is defined as a collection of predispositions of the character and the spirit that can be cultivated and that one finds if not in everyone, as ideologies tend to mislead with the latest fads, at least with most people. Creation, on the other hand, is the invention and the composition of a work of art or of science, answering two criteria: to produce something new (to do something that has not been done before) and to see its value recognized sooner or later by a public. Thus defined, creation is rare. The majority of creative individuals are never creators: what makes the difference, as what Proust says of Bergotte, is the disengagement [le décollage].


We will reconsider this “disengagement” [décollage] fully because as the extract states it is what makes the essence of creation and, for this reason, we will concentrate our report around this disengagement [décollage]. For more clarity, we will designate it by the term “detachment.”

2. Personality of the Creator

We take again the description that Godefroid (14) gives of the personality of creators:

The creative individual is, indeed, primarily a nonconformist. It is his independence of judgment that ensures the possibility to him of exploring ways in which the others do not dare to risk for fear of ridicule.

All the system of education set up by society is centered on conformism. It is the surest means to ensure cohesion among the members of the group, but it is also the most radical way to prevent any blossoming of a creative thought.

In the social area, he is not integrated easily into the life of a group although he is open to others and relatively popular. In the same way, he agrees to share the values of the others only if they correspond to those that he supports. He is however not very dogmatic and has a quite relative view of life and the world as well as meanings given to his actions. he is an eclectic person, always curious and anxious to integrate data gleaned from different areas. The creator loves to have fun, having always his head filled with fanciful ideas. He prefers what is complex and new with what is simple and usual. His perceptions of the things are unceasingly renewed.

He has preserved generally the gift of wonder proper to childhood and is able to be moved before a flower as before a revolutionary discovery. He is, generally, a dreamer who can pass for a fool by the fact that he will express his emotional life while accepting it and while integrating the irrational facets of its behavior.


We have highlight in bold characters some words in order to draw attention to them. We could summarize them as the capacity sufficiently to maintain a personal relationship with its meanings, the capacity of integration, the going beyond rational thought as an interpretation among others and the relative facet of its conceptions in relation to those of the others.


The description stipulates that the creators have perceptions unceasingly renewed on things. We see the influence of the creator on his meanings in his own usage as his continual work on his perceptions.

3. Theoretical Panorama of the Outlines

Michel Mathieu (3) made a fast panorama of the authors of traditional psychoanalysis on the creative process. He quotes Rosolato G., according to his book, “Essais sur le symbolisme” [“Essay on Symbolism”], Gallimard, Paris, 1969, p. 121:

Thus Freud has staked on the neurosis, and one can, indeed, ask himself while wondering as Rosolato did about the divergences that exist between Totem and Tabou and Un souvenir d’enfance de Leonardo de Vinci, which is exactly the type of mental operation favorable to creation: “Would hysteria and obsessional neurosis have thus their role jointly to play in the artist? Would there be some contradiction there?


Michel Mathieu begins again in his turn (3, p. 85):

One can also follow Chasseguet-Smirgel in her lucid but dangerous arabesques on the anal introjection of the penis of the father. Returning to the frozen ground of perversion, we find ourselves in company of Rosolato who supports, of course, his own theory: it is perversion… (...) And there is Mélanie Klein… (...) Beyond neurosis and perversion, in the abyssal universe of hate and love, the parceling out and the reparation….


But Chasseguet-Smirgel directs her search for a psychoanalysis of art towards other directions than that of the anal problems towards the Kleinien position of the artistic creation articulated around the concept of reparation that she borrows from Mélanie Klein. She is often quoted and we will speak about it with Michel Mathieu who synthesizes her thought (3, pp. 85-86):

… the psychic development is established in the very first times of life by a position known as paranoid, where the being archaically is delivered to a Manichaeism of the object: the good is opposed to the bad. Gradually, in a position known as depressive, the overall character of the object is grasped, the subject thus discovers in itself this permanent totality. From acceptance of such an ambivalence, even chosen, will be born the culpability where will be taken the sources of the fantasies of reparation, fantasies aiming at always restoring the good totality in imaginary prey to the sadistic attacks.


Chasseguet-Smirgel as follows describes her position in connection with Klein (9, p. 90):

The creative act will constitute one of the favored methods of achieving reparation. The concept of reparation of the object constitutes thus the foundation of the Kleinian conception of the creative function.


But Chasseguet-Smirgel orients the creative act more towards a reaction formation than a true sublimation according to Michel Mathieu (3, p. 86):

Classically, the sublimated drive loses its repressions and counter invests, in that it is connected with a mechanism of defense.


Mathieu continues by underlining in the thesis of Chasseguet-Smirgel the fact that she postulates two categories of distinct creative acts; one pursues the object, others the subject, and it is this last category that reaches sublimation. Finally Chasseguet-Smirgel poses the hypothesis of the passage from a form of a repairing creation of the object to the reparation of oneself.


Let us return to the conception of M. Klein, who stated that that the creation is structured starting from the fantasies of reparation. The subject seeks to repair the effects of its destructive fantasies on itself or its objects of love (3, p. 91):

This mechanism aims at saving from the disaster created by the imaginary sadism of the child on the mode of the spitting  out, the devouring, etc. the body of the mother or, still more, the combined parents… (...) It is with this archaic fantasy of destruction of the combined parents, image of the primal scene, that the child must be opposed, giving up again, gathering the scattered objects of its violence. The position known as depressive is resolved in the degree even of the reparation, a stable identification of the ego with the object become beneficial being established of the same body. And its success, Mélanie Klein will state, supposes the victory of the forces of life over the death instincts.


Thus, during the ontogenetic development, sadism is vanquished, the child comes to the genital stage by the reparation.


Then, we observe the role of the anal eroticism in creation. Indeed, the experience of the passage of faeces from the interior to the exterior is structuring (Anzieu, 3, p. 28):

… in so much that the succession of the suffering and satisfaction and in so much that a produced object (the faeces and, on their model, the work) can be invested with love (a gift) or aggressiveness (a weapon).


Anzieu thinks that the Id of the creators is characterized by his great drive force. As for the ego, he thinks that it is the essential and quasi-constant agent of the work of creation, in so far as he is endowed with the following characteristics (Anzieu, 3, p. 29):

capacity to start the regression and to control the results of it, capacity to idealize his own omnipotence identified with that of the mother, capacity of fantasizing starting from the defensive conflicts, capacity, finally, to symbolize symbolization (in other words, of passing directly from a view to a transcription).


The topic point of view according to Anzieu shows a conflict between the ego ideal and the superego (Anzieu, 3, p. 29):

The conflict between the ego ideal and the superego is intense, with nevertheless frequent predominance of the first over the second. The ego ideal of the creative genius… makes possible the mental transgression of the prejudices, the taboos, the heritages; he exonerates himself of the transgressions; he preaches on revenges to be taken: the work for its creator is a revenge over childhood, over the family, over society, even over the human condition. But the superego does not fail to continue through shame, inhibitions, the feeling of impotence to create, and the devaluation of the products of creation. The self-punishment, so acute in the creators, is the revenge of the superego for having yielded to the temptations of heroic identifications proposed by the ego ideal. The glorification of oneself as a producer of a work -- of a work produced starting from the psychic wounds and bearing their marks -- gives the example of the way in which the ego ideal regains again the upper hand.


The transgression of the paternal interdiction, illustrated by the myth of Icarus, is very precisely the marked seal of the dead and hovers over the shadow of the creator.

4. Heroic Identification of the Creator

Heroic identification is a term created by Daniel Lagache (Anzieu, 3, p. 3):

To create, as a first condition, requires a symbolic connection with a recognized creator. Without this connection, and without its later disavowal, paternity of a work is not possible. Icarus must always owe his wings to some Daedalus.


But this heroic identification is also masochistic (Anzieu, 3, p. 24):

Besdine at length studied the identification heroic-masochistic in the creative genius. The need to be made to suffer while being worked to death is at the same time a way of expiating oneself by the excess of work for the excess of an old and major fault: Greco-Latin mythology described this dialectical with the work of Hercules. The purpose of the pursuit of the exploit is to transform the culpable into a hero. But the need for punishment returns sooner or later, and the failure comes to prohibit or counterbalance the exploit.


The springs of this heroic identification are centered on death and the figure of the father. Thus this identification shows its defensive color. Gelly R., 1969 in La personnalité professionnelle de l’aviateur, Revue des Corps de santé des Armées, May 10th, p. 587 states:

Desires to outdistance the father and distresses over death, such are the two principal psychological elements in the foreground in the post-Oedipal phase. At this point in time will enter into play new mechanisms of defense that end in what one can call the heroic identification.


This identification consists in taking for a model a real or imaginary character who has the characteristics to achieve exploits that the majority of the human beings would be unable to do.


Mr. Mathieu thinks that (3, p. 107):

The creator oscillates between two levels of identifications: an imaginary level, to which his ideal ego seeks to carry out fusion with the all-powerful and omnipresent mother, and a symbolic level, where the father is introjected and interiorized in the form of the couple superego and ideal of the ego.

5. Workings of the Unconscious and the Conscious in Creation

We will leave the final words to Jean Guillaumin (3, pp. 212-213), who considers that the creative work itself is centered on an organization established in the economy of the ego:

… one gives oneself to the task of the study of the processes of intrapsychic [intra = inner] mediation, and that of the place or of the system of operation in which is worked out the process of the contributions of the unconscious and of the Id to the profit of the ego (...) Because the essence of the operation’s founder of the art is situated, whatever the psychic material that he uses, on the level of the intervention of the psychic instruments of an ego, that order its unfolding.


Speaking about the conscious-preconscious unit, Jean Guillaumin thinks (3, pp. 212-213) that:

Acting, as one knows, in the manner of a filter, which makes it possible to soften -- all in their preserving a representation proportional to the unconscious demands -- the drive demands admitted into consciousness, the unit authorizes, by releasing a great quantity of reinvested energy, an important activity of exploration and mental experimentation on the representations. This one leads then to the development of satisfactory relations, because economically of better regulation between the various elements and levels of psychic life. It is not to be doubted that the ultimate development -- and even all its realization – of the work of art depends on the handling of this apparatus by the ego of the artist…. (...) Art obviously results from a certain type of utilization of the psychic filter, that it is necessary to specify, and who presents among different characters that of leading to particularly important effects on the narcissistic level. But to place under this angle the “psychoanalytical” study of the creativity does this have anything distressing or degrading for the artist? That leads, on the contrary, to having a high regard for the skilful mental design and the marvelous functional availability to which corresponds its capacity to create beauty.


Then, J. Guillaumin making the unconscious second by subordinating it to a conscious-preconscious system can only explain why such an unconscious will be employed for purposes of creation. For him, it is the quality of the psychic apparatus of selection and appropriate transformation that transfigures the unconscious in the creative act or not (3, p. 213):

The approach “by the Unconscious” is not made obsolete for all that. But it subordinates itself henceforth, as less central, less “relevant,” with a course that can only explain why such an unconscious will be employed for purposes of creation, which, fallen into other hands if one can say that, dealing with a psychic apparatus of selection and of transformation less suitable, and for example less fine and less stable, had never generated art, but only, perhaps, failure and neurosis.


We find again this concept of intense management of the internal representations by exploration and experimentation. In the same way, the underlined fact of a selection and a self-managed transformation strengthens us in the hypothesis of capture and putting into form with a “private usage” of its sensibility and its representations respectively (located in k + and p +).


Finally, J. Guillaumin returns to the unconscious its original place in the creative process (3, p. 237):

If the ego organizes and alone controls creation, it is from an “elsewhere”; it is from the Id that the ego draws substance and desire in order to create. The desire remains the last word for the psychoanalyst as undoubtedly for the creative artist.


To conclude this matter, we will leave with the words of Anzieu:

If it is true that the regressive moment in the work of creation mobilizes a narcissistic identification with the maternal omnipotence, this same work in its later phases, requires an eminently active interior attitude, without which the work remains in a larval state and the discovery does not pass beyond the stage of obscure intuition. (...) There, according to the conscious ego, the will, and the secondary psychic processes would be and are only decisive. (Anzieu, 3, p. 26)

6. Phases of the Work of Creation According to Anzieu

To be a creator is to be capable of a fast and deep regression from where unexpected correspondences are returned, archaic representations -- in the form of images, of affects, rhythms -- of the primary psychic processes, correspondences, representations that will be used as an organizing core for an artistic work or a possible scientific discovery.


This process breaks up according to five stages that Anzieu (3, pp. 14-16) described:


1 - Regression: achieving of a regressive movement, related to an internal crisis and mobilization of archaic representations.


According to Anzieu, this regression can cause the fear of the unknown, of a disturbing strangeness, of a metamorphosis. The regression also should be supported, i.e. the fantastic productions and feelings released by the regression. To support them is not to feel invaded by them in a catastrophic overflow and decompensation [lack of functioning of a diseased organ]. It is about a regression controlled by the ego where there is the double capacity to regress and to fantasize. In this stage, solitude is the setting. In the regression, each one is alone with himself or herself: from whence the necessity of a strong narcissistic over-investment in order to be able to support it.


2 - To perceive while deciphering: clear perceptive capture of some of these representations, allowing to fix them in the preconscious as an acting organizing core.


According to Anzieu, this phase is inhibited by the feelings of shame and culpability and the weight of the knowledge acquired bundle of perceptions of the new things. The creator is assailed by doubts because what he is seizing can be of no value and pure personal delirium without any interest. It is often here that intervenes a close person who is a witness and gives the confidence necessary to the creator towards his or her own inner psychical reality to counterbalance his or her deviance. This privileged interlocutor allows the recognition and the sharing of that seized by the creator. Consequently, the material takes in the eyes of the creator a more objective reality. It is a great importance to be able to share his or her secret. This friend procures the essential positive illusion that reality rejoins the desires of the creator. We speak in connection of this illusion about a maternal relational space or container.


Anzieu has recourse to the concept Winnicottian of “illusion.” The mother, while taking care herself of external reality for the child, brings to this last the illusion that this external reality agrees to his desires; a positive illusion because she brings the child to a progressive taking into account of this reality, of which, on the contrary, he would be diverted so that upon the departure of this external reality did nothing to inflict a permanent denial of his internal reality.


This illusion according to Winnicott is a space where there is a continuity between the pleasure principle and the principle of reality (Anzieu, 3, p. 16):

… the work, by its reality and by its effects, proves its persistence in us, since early childhood, of the universe of the illusion and satisfaction in the necessity where we all find ourselves, in order to support the difficulty in living and of reconciling thus one time or the other of the pleasure principle and the principle of reality.


3 - To record: detailed adaptation of the image, the affect, the rhythm thus captured in a material (writing, painting, music, etc.) that one acquires or has the mastery and/or according to a familiar knowledge (mathematical, chemical, botanical, linguistic, socio-cultural, etc.), the greatest creations consisting in innovating as for the material or the familiar knowledge.


4 - Work of composition: the choice -- or the innovation -- of a genre, the work of a style, an internal design of parts into an overall organization entering in a symbolic resonance with the archaic representative nucleus.


5 - To produce to the outside: the completed work, becoming an object external to the creator, is subjected to a reality-testing of a particular type that is the judgment of the readers.


Always according to Anzieu, it is here that the creator definitively detaches oneself from the work; he faces the reactions, the judgments, and the criticisms with indifference.


We will finish this quick panorama of the basic elements that help us with better determining a type of psychoanalytical approach to creation. We could observe that the ego plays a role even if the material is of an unconscious origin. This psychic activity in creation can be approximated by theoretical elements that will be more or less arranged in such a manner to better understand the articulation between the empirical such as we have lived and observed and the theoretical elements of the Szondi Test.

7. Szondi Theoretical Approach - Empirical

Someone who creates will bring something new, i.e. something of unknown and of the inconceivable starting from something known and conceivable. If p- is the knowledge common to everyone, the first movement consists in starting out of p- and then to move away from it.


As he carries with him all alone this movement as “denier” [négateur ] of the known, he tends towards a position where he installs himself as the carrier of this knowledge. As Nietzsche said in Zarathoustra: He is always a denier, the one who must be a creator.” (7, p. 216)


This one source in an ideal that he has made his own. It is thus constituted gradually little by little into an alternative to the known. The place of this elaboration is his imaginary space and his tools those of his psyche. More precisely, we will see that it is about his own translation/formatted of sensory feelings that is internal and/or external.


The framework for such a self-managed edifice is instituted in a relation with oneself as it draws the elements through him to nourish and shape his ideal represented in p+ towards which the creative movement tends.


Thus, the trajectory of the creative movement would start from p to make one’s way forward to p +.


In an autocentric movement, the creator organizes a representation that will allow the installation of other things that are not yet conceivable.


p– is the theoretical knowledge common to all. It is the base common to all the motorists that allows them to use the car. Thus, the use of a car requires an ensemble of representations common in usage in a society and at an epoch. There is an openly collective dimension in p–. In the Rorschach, the k – p – persons give the most banal answers. We will speak about this again through the thesis of Jean Mélon in connection with the quarter k+ p+ and of the relation to oneself.


For passing from p– to p+, there exists a mediator: the factor k. That supposes that p– and p+ function like two separate entities and that the passage of the one to the other supposes a mediator. According to the theory of the circuits, k+ is the mediator that makes the individual leave factor p–. Thus, p would be a factor “condition”: p– = collective condition (primacy of the Other) and p+ = condition suitable for oneself (primacy of oneself).


k+ mediates the movement that moves away from the common representations situated in p–.


We will see that it is about a reappropriation of the person’s imaginary space. This movement towards the imaginary is built on the base of an oppositional no [to say no to something or someone] registered in k+. To move away from these common representations, it is necessary to fix them in a kind of star-distance [sideration] that makes it possible for the creator to work from above.


Without distance, there is no “looking upon.”


This is the function of an oppositional no: to fix something, to be detached from it, and to make it perceptible to the senses. It is a little as if one took a photograph of something mental, and by doing this, to observe what one has photographed allows one to disengage oneself from the perception hitting one by the act of the photograph. Without reference mark fixes, no distance because this is an approximation based on the distances between. “To fix” allows one to perceive the distance when one moves away.


The movement of the thought can move away from its object of perception only in so far as it is an object of perception and in so far as the ego does not participate with this object (thus, no p). That supposes that the subject of perception differs from this object. This differentiation rests on a detachment of the subject in relation to the object of perception.


This operation is registered in the oppositional no: “I say no to something.” And the more “I say no,” the more we know that we are detached from what is the object of this refusal. The reappropriation of his imaginary moving off is by a refusal that institutes the I in the operation of oppositional no. The role of the hate is paramount, and we will see that with Jean Baudrillard (6).


Thus, it is a fixed reference mark that enables us to estimate the distance between this reference point mark and the ego. In order to fix something mentally and even in the act to perceive, the I says “no” and strikes this something by its negation. The oppositional no becomes necessary when the distancing operates on things strongly anchored in us, i.e. strongly registered in our act even of perceiving and of thinking: in other words, these are the things in which we strongly participate.


The essential idea is that the creative process implies a permanent revolution. To make the space to be able to create; therefore, it is necessary all the time to engage in a process of destruction from where a new construction emerges.


We postulate a “fault” [la faille: a break in a structure, a flaw] whose role from a macroscopic point of view is “to aid” perception to free itself from itself.


It is through the “fault.” rupture in the participation with the other, that this fissure develops allowing the visibility of “the obvious.” A fault, which perhaps happened to a child abandoned by his parents as Georges experienced it at 4 years of age who was adopted. That can be such a strong depersonalization that it is vital to cut the bond to the other in order not to disappear in the other. There is also and especially the wounds of love, the dramas like divorces, mournings,….


We undergo a break. That “falls” on us from out of the blue. Moreover what gives it power is that we “are not prepared” to assume a similar rupture. We all without exception undergo ruptures in our life. How is it that certain persons start a creative procedure to surmount the rupture and that other persons choose another way? It is a question that we will leave open.


This distancing of the mental in relation to the known must in some part operate on a mental fixation. A view of the view is set up: visions that make visible the visible (“there were the years that I lived with him and I was never able to understand it; it is when he stepped over the limits that I really saw things and then I said no”).


The expression to take something into account [se rendre compte de quelque chose] means comprehension of this thing. The full interpretation of the expression says in fact “to give account to oneself” (rendre in the meanings to give without restitution). If we tighten the analysis on the word compte, that becomes in the sense of closing the accounts [comptes] in order to end with a total (“at the end of the count [compte ]”). This concept to arrive at the final account [compte] (“to do his accounts [comptes]”) requires a final limit that makes it possible to determine a time frame, for example, one year. It implies that something ends. It is precisely this limit that, we think, is intrinsic with the expression to take something into account [se rendre compte].


A limit is placed on the perceptive act and the one that is returned (the look of the look) on that which has been perceived and experienced. This look of the look can emerge only in the condition of being detached from the “basic” look taken inside the movement of looking. In order to make visible the visible, the laid-down limit intervenes in order to divide the look of the look in a perceptive unfolding (to look at oneself looking at something) and with this intention, it is necessary to take account of it, i.e. to be hit with a mental “photograph” (limit placed on the perceptive act) of something and to demand accounts of “it.”


Thus the creative process and the process of limitation are basically anchored in a common root: without the act of limitation to the attachment, no detachment. In the same way, without the act of limitation to the detachment, no concretization, i.e. the completed work.


The unlimited consists in putting a limit on the limitation. If unlimited is the source and is expressed in the imaginary, it could be deduced starting from the mental act that consists in placing a limit to the strength of reality and the look of the others on oneself in the premises of one’s thought. By reality, we understand the limits of spacial and temporal reality included or not in the Other, the non-ego that we interiorize. And the look of the Other would be limiting to oneself in the sense where the Other is that which is not oneself; therefore, that which can deny the share of its altérité [otherness] is the inflational movement of one’s own thought.



We are more specifically interested in two vectors -- C and Sch -- for our dissertation. We do not forget the two other vectors in our interpretation. This focusing on the ego and contact results from a choice carried out in the spirit of a tight analysis, and we think that these two vectors are more favorable to detect the creative reference marks in someone. We will give only some information to introduce this interpretation of the factors for two reasons: 1 – the methodological part is rich and already gives many theoretical elements, 2 – spread throughout this dissertation are clarifications on the factors according to our interpretation.


The Ego Vector


The Sch vector relates to all that has to be seen with respect to the relation of oneself with oneself. The ego is above all a relation. At the beginning of his “Traité du désespoir,” Sören Kierkegaard writes that the ego is the relation of a relation, which indicates the direction of this relation: relation of oneself with oneself. The ego is something that is distinguished from another thing. And that raises the question of the Other and the self.


The Szondian factor of p+ “to be all” is exactly on the level of the individual while p– (i.e. to belong to the whole but the whole that is not oneself and the whole that is outside of oneself) is to think that one only feels well if we participate with the whole (the religious position).


On the Sch level, the problem is that of to be or not to be. To be, it is necessary to exist. p is the factor to be  and Szondi says that k is the factor to have. But we can retranslate the factor k as the factor of existence in the sense where if one does not even exist, the question of to be does not even arise.


It is the one who exists that raises the question to be: “Why do I exist?”. One can raise the question for oneself at any time: Why are we here?. Here, we are in an activity that concerns above all the ego. Thus k is the mediator to be, to have is the mediator of to be; one cannot be without to have. It is necessary to pass in to have  to be able to be.


Schizophrenia is the properly human illness, which one meets only in humans. If there exists a catatonic behavior in the animal, it is not devised by a relation to itself. To function, one must cut oneself into two in order to speak and to think at the same time.


The schizophrenic is somebody who lost the relation with itself (Compare: The specular [mirror] relation). The schizophrenic has lost contact, he is no more in the world and does not know anymore what is the world. We are in the world, and it is for that we are alive. The world is different from an object. The world is indefinable: the world is in oneself, one is the world and one forms part of the world.


Szondi speaks about participative projection or projective participation. Eros is the reunion of what has been separated. Consequently, the tendency p– is to be interpreted with these meanings, i.e. in the meanings of an attempt of the ego to find something from which it had been separated at the beginning.


It is a matter of a desire of the ego for not being separate from the world but of being in participation with the heart [l’âme: also the soul] of the world. Primitive mentality is characterized by the “no-distinction between what is me and what is not me.”


The meanings of projection is that there is a projection of this need finally for omnipotence. What dominates the desire of the ego basically is this desire of omnipotence. One never wishes but for only what one has lost.


The most primal position of the ego, that which animates it basically, is that to recover the omnipotence, and one is never as eager to recover omnipotence than when one is impotent and when one feels lost in existence. Then, the need emerges to participate in something that justly makes it so that one feels not separated from the rest of the world.


p– is the most profound tendency of the ego. When one speaks about the infantile omnipotence, that is what one indicates: the narcissistic ego infantile omnipotence. In fact, this ego-there does not exist as such. The child at this stage is the center of the world; it does not feel separate from the rest of the world; it forms a unit with the rest of the world. We all have lost this cosmic feeling of belonging in the world.


p– is given by approximately 50% of the population. The subject who gives p– has a need to participate in all that is beyond one. That means that his ego is not sufficient for him or her. He or she is not self-sufficient. Obviously, this is unconscious.


One could also say that it is the micro-manic [micro = small] position in opposition to megalomanic [megas = great] (the inflative position). p– will be found in a crowd of things and, in the normal population, that means nothing other than this need to take part of something and this need to be attached to something that represents the omnipotence and that is not oneself and to make oneself a part of it. It is that which is most important: to belong to.


Therefore, one could say that p– is the first psychic operation, that which will consist in creating representations that make it possible to work out intolerable feelings.


The baby being abandoned in his cradle is one of these situations. What happens in these moments? We are persecuted. Therefore, to fabricate bad objects or terrifying representations and to hallucinate in a “negative” manner (bad, malicious,…) – this is a psychic work that contains something.


This fabrication of bad representations makes it possible to support the situation best because the anxiety can then be attached to a representation. The worst being to experience an anxiety, a kind of primordial anxiety, a distress. One needs in these moments to believe or to imagine that one has a persecutor for example. We do not need to be primitive for that. As soon as that does not continue and that functions all alone, the process gets started. It is banal that one does not stop doing similar things.


Projection is neither good nor bad. It would not have to be understood only in the meanings of persecution: “nothing happens, I invent a representation where I find the cause and where I put the cause of my discomfort, and, presto, that is better.”

k +

k+ is the second stage in the genetic circuit of the ego after the ego has been part of the first, primal position. In p–, one deals with mental operations of level 1, i.e. the operation of the most elementary psychic apparatus. The 2nd stage occurs in k+ and thus relates to more elaborate psychic operations.


The term introjection indicates to us that it is an operation which consists in making to pass to the interior and projection is making to pass to the exterior. Therefore, introjection presumes that one interiorizes something. What will constitute ego is a new mental operation that will produce the ego as a representation of itself. According to Lacan: it is the fascination of oneself by oneself from where comes the mirror stage.


Let us define autoeroticism as a self-sufficing [autosuffisante] satisfaction thanks to a representation that brings pleasure. There is no autoeroticism without a world of fantasies; autoeroticism nourishes fantasy. The Freudian conception of narcissism rests on the idea of the circulation of libido, the energy that, at the beginning, goes towards the “object” (for the child, it is the mother but here, the concept of a not-separated object is not evident); then, the libido returns towards oneself and this constitutes narcissism.


For Freud, it is thus above all a matter of the circulation of energy, of libido. The ego must become autonomous and that is only possible if it is sufficiently fed with narcissistic libido. At a given time, the child taking itself as an object of self-love can separate itself for the first time.


The libido starts with autoeroticism and then one passes to the narcissism that is a capitalistic operation (it takes everything for itself). Only it is necessary to love if one does not want to become ill. That explains why one goes from narcissism despite everything; one ends up bursting like the frog that wanted to be like an ox. At a given moment, boom!, it bursts and one finds nothing any more. Then, comes the choice of an object.


To get to the root of k+, it is necessary to see it as a capitalistic operation of recovery of narcissistic libido.


From the time when there is ego and when the ego attracts towards itself all the libido that before was directed towards an object that was not really an object, one can say that ego is the first object (Lacan: the ego is above all imaginary).


What is introjected? Introjection is the operation that allows what Freud evoked in narcissism, i.e. the concentration of libido in the ego. Libido can concentrate in the ego only because there are introjections. Finally, the ego makes itself with the image of the Other.


Primary narcissism is built on nucleuses so that this narcissistic libido can be fixed. For Lacan, the nucleus is the image of the ego and it is the mirror stage. The individual is condensed in his image.


What feeds k+ is also the desire to be loved or to love oneself. What is this object that is lost in k and that one tries to find again? It is the image of oneself such as he or she was loved and idolized by the parents. The subject k+, basically, is the one that would like to capture again this image and truly to possess it. That is impossible obviously. There is no possibility of going to seek one’s image behind the mirror.


If we concentrate on the concept of image, the question of seeing becomes fundamental and the question of the object is also a matter of seeing and of having. The history of Narcissus is very telling. He did not know how to be detached from his image; he wished to see it and to have it and he dies because of it.


Narcissus is also the patron of poets. In the myth when he dies, there is a flower that pushes forth at the place where he disappears; he is also a figure of creation in a certain manner.


What is a catatonic? He is a spectacular subject that remains hours holding the same pose physically trying after a few minutes. He has an extraordinary force to hold the posture without moving three days straight. The catatonic phenomenon is truly the mad attempt to find again an image of oneself and to incarnate it in a definitive way. The catatonic tries to find himself again through his posture.


k+, through this image of a catatonic, is to copy an attitude. Szondi evokes the concept of the persona. This term means initially in Latin a mask. The subject in losing his ego is no longer a person.


In k+, there is thus this concept of a  nucleus that makes it possible to crystallize the narcissistic libido that finally will feed the ego. The catatonic, for example, through the catatonic pose poses himself, “it is necessary to be posed.” In the very symptom of the catatonic, one can capture again the meanings of that which he wants to say: “I pose.” That implies the idea also to impose a character and that returns us to this concept of the persona, i.e. the mask that is more real to some extent than the person.


We understand better what function incarnates the catatonic: a function of fixing.


Szondi offers all kinds of illustrations of this position k+. He says initially that it is the ego that opposes and that says “shit!”. It is the stage of no in the child. That supposes that he or she has introjected something that enables him or her to say no; otherwise, one would say that this is the stage of negation. To be able to say no, it is necessary to have introjected otherwise one cannot. The no that we find here is obviously not k-; that is another no than this one. In fact, no is to be taken in the sense that it is a distinct operation that makes it possible for a subject to be posed, and, rightly, one finds again this concept of the pose in the opposition. That also introduces us to the notion of the object, i.e. to throw something in front of oneself, to constitute oneself like an object.


The simplest way to seize again what k+ means is to think that one is k+ each time a character is constructed. The very positive side of the character is that which makes it possible to understand this formula of Szondi that states that catatonia is the form of cure of paranoia. One understands this well because the paranoid is not a person; he is not able to constitute himself as a character. If he achieved that, he would be a catatonic and he would have crossed a first stage. That which is in k+ asserts its autonomy in a certain manner thanks to its character.


k+ would allow the capture, the putting into form and the construction of its image of oneself caused by a relation with oneself that has its source in one’s ego ideal located in p +. It is an “I” who is related to an image (“I look at myself”) and that is different from the “I” in p + that falls under a reflexive relation with oneself (“I think of myself”). k + opens a relation with oneself through an image of oneself; it is in these meanings that it opens a specular relation with oneself in the sense where one refers to an image to locate one’s own movement.

Illustration Through the Adolescent

The adolescent in our view expresses this opening of a specular relation to himself or herself since this is in the phase of constructing an image of himself or herself in order to locate his or her movement of being -- his or her search of identity. It is in the search of an image of himself or herself that corresponds to that which he or she believes to be. This search of an identity does not skip the laying out of one’s own universe. That can be divided into two facets.


The first is concerned with the representations that it brings into play in order to be situated in the society. This is the side p + of his universe. The second facet is concerned with all the sensory facets of his universe. Indeed, he works out from the world all around him a specific sensory environment proper to his search of identity. It is a matter, in fact, of all the information that is collected by his senses in his universe. That goes from the posters to the musics while going over to his clothes and to his manner of speaking and of holding himself without forgetting the quantity of objects that occupy his personal space. There is a true sensory bath specific to the adolescent that sends back to him unceasingly, through his sensibility, an image of himself of a sensory nature.


The interaction of these two facets, (k + p +) is that all this sensory bath is truly a very powerful mirror that returns an image to him that he selected. In extreme cases, it is a mirror much more powerful than a conventional mirror. Indeed, this last returns an image only when he looks at himself in it, while the “sensory mirror” returns his symbolic image to him with each glance and at every moment lived in his universe. If he had been suddenly locked up three days in his room for example, his universe would return to him a massive amount of sensory information during all this time that would flood his mentality and would end up forming a deposit more and more in representations built with these sensory elements. It is in this sense that we speak about a specular relationship between the subject and his sensory universe in the meanings where his universe returns an image of him to himself through the sensory configuration that was formatted by the laying out of this universe. We can speak about a “sensory style” specific to the image of one’s imaginary self that one wants to capture by the position k +.


The capture and working of a sensory material suitable for oneself are injected into a representation of oneself in which are deposited these sensory elements. Since the configuration of these sensory elements is due only to his own imaginary will (k+), the effect of the look of the Other (p-) tends to be eliminated and the representation of oneself more and more is built with his own look (p+).


It is as visible in the adolescent as in us as we announced above. Selection of his music, his posters, his clothes, his speech, his food, etc. show that he withdraws from the common sensory bath the personal elements that contribute to forge his personal “stamp” in life.


The selection, the capture and working of these elements are in agreement with the image of himself that he has the desire for creating and building. This filtration of all the days of this common sensory bath is fundamental to nourish an identity specific to oneself. What k + has seizes and put into form will be maintained in suspense in his mentality and will feed a representation by a kind of sedimentation of the sensory of the representational. There is an “injection” of this material into a representation of himself.


The creator uses his meanings and his sensibility in a way specific to him. We “often see” the same thing as he but without paying attention and that does not leave a trace because that was not captured. It is question of paying attention, being attentive, and being available with our manner of feeling the things that are also subtle and subliminal. The process of paying attention increases the density of the perceived elements and gives them sufficient weight to be collected and maintained among all the rest even if we are alone in perceiving this way.


To be able to do this, it is necessary to have self-confidence, to accept its “imprint” and to be able to pull aside without the vision of the others abolishing it.

p +

p+ is a position that authorizes a beginning of individuation in the sense that the subject is constituted there while doubling himself or herself from an image of the Other that can be as well his or her own specular image (Mirror stage according to Jacques Lacan)…this alienating image allows a subject to discover a ONE, unified, with the image of the Other, a complete being. This is why p + refers to the need for completeness and bisexuality. (Mélon, 20, p. 98)


This image will become later the Ego ideal. It is in this sense that Mélon says that p+ corresponds to the spiritual ideal.


p + goes toward the meanings of the lack of differentiation because it tends towards an increasingly great potentiality to be everything. It is inflation. A p +!! shows an inhibition to carry out a choice: the person does not move because he oscillates through his multiple possibilities of choice without choosing. He is constantly in the potentiality to do everything: everything is possible…then what to choose?

k -

A simple k- image would consist in saying that it is “the eraser that erases what is formulated on the imaginary tableau created with k +”.


It is in this position that the ego breaks its image of itself created by its imagination and destroys the specular relation with itself. It is, consequently, in the image of the Other that the k - individual will seek in reality his or her image of himself or herself. k - institutes a specular relation with the Other: “You, what are you considering? You have the look of those human wrecks? One does not speak like that in Dupont! Extinguish this music of a nutcase! Do you hear the aberrations that you formulate? But you are delirious!”.


It is the “sensory eraser” that erases the imaginary dimension registered in the image of oneself and that cleans it of its fantasy nature or improves it while removing what is not appropriate. In the latter case, it is rather a matter of k± where the two tendencies act in concert.

The k - Position and Society

k - would be also a use of its sensibility indirectly in the service of the ordinary. Thus, to capture the same thing as the others, it is necessary to have conforming senses in order to capture this thing. In our perceptive capture, it is nevertheless necessary to have a framework of interpretation of our senses in order to be located on the same baseline as the other persons.


Moreover, it is not all from having this collective framework; the investment and maintaining of it by granting a certain primacy within himself allows himself to adapt easily. This expresses the idea that the more this collective framework is invested, the less we require effort to agree with the others; the fact that it “is automated” makes it possible for our attention to be spared an exhausting mental concentration. Its investment is carried out to the detriment of our own framework of personal interpretation. By slowing down our imagination sufficiently to level it to the common standards, k - with its negation makes its senses to be appropriate to the common use in the culture and with the representations in use in our society. The k - adaptation places a limit to our putting into personal form of our senses: k - denies the function k +.


It is sufficient to go to live a few days in a culture radically different from ours to feel the weight of this sensory tuning. To a lesser extent, to fit in a team that has its own codes asks at the beginning much attention to capture the way in which this team functions, its vision of work to be achieved, and the small subtle things that form a common sensory baggage. It is all this sensory work of leveling of one’s sensibility in relation to that of others that we suppose in k -.


In the school situation of examination, the distress warning signals related to this situation of great stress are often standardized (made common) in the sense where the common representation in force that tallies with this experience states that:  “It is normal to suffer, that happens to everyone who passes through it and that finally, it is common and necessary to go along with it: this is how your exams work; if not, you are not made for the studies!”.


The personal sensory experience related to this situation is standardized, i.e. leveled to a common standard that tends to eliminate what would prevent the intellectual performance. This way of treating one’s senses makes it possible to lead to undeniable results.


We are led finally after many years to break this rhythm at less to take account of the sensory signals specific to our vision of the world. The pressure exerted on us being the weight of the look of the Other on one’s image of oneself.


The access to this common representation is strengthened and enriched more especially as our putting into sensory form agrees with this representation, i.e. accentuates in our putting into sensory form that which goes with the meanings of the Other and weakens what moves us away from the others.


The C Vector


In the C vector, the goal of m+ is well being, to find oneself well and calm; each one has his own way of being well (to sleep, to speak, to be satiated, to eat: each one has his choice). The m- has chosen the ascetic position, “I do not need anything” (Compare to the mental anorexic), “the less I have, the better it is,” “I feel good because I do not depend on anything.” The well-being itself is an absolute; there are two absolutes: that of m+ that is in the fullness and that of m-, the complete ascetic who does not need anything. The means for the well-being resides in d.


m -

The m- person is “the monk who isolates himself to concentrate on his being and cuts his contact with the world.” The ascetic position of autonomy. No demand for contact. This is a being disconnected from the world.


The tendency m - corresponds to cutting contact. Its most positive effect is to make oneself free and to take up one’s autonomy.


Kinable (15, p. 201) specifies:

It is more primarily about the possibility of taking the personal initiative “to make his play individually,” possibility of being oneself one’s own possibility that Maldiney has rightly qualified as the “silent and always threatened possibility.”

m +

m + is the resumption of contact, the inscription in a demand for contact. It is a being connected to the world. (Mediation of oneself through the Other.)


The tendency m + means the taking of a close contact that binds the person to his or her environment.


Kinable quotes J. Horn (15, p. 157): The tendency m + is the basic tendency and “to some extent the queen function, that which the others contribute to structure it and that where the essence of the operation, all in all, does without even making contact.”


According to J. Mélon and Ph. Lekeuche, the accent is put on the movement that imposes contacting one to one’s environment; and when the entourage appears, the contacting person disappears in the fusional contact.

m + and m - express the dialectical world of feeling by locating the extreme limits of the experience (15, p. 167).


The tendencies d - and d + are mediating between the two primaries (m + and m -). If m + is the queen function where the operation of making contact is played out, J. Kinable adds that the factor m - is the director as the factor of separation.


Kinable (15, p. 157) states that the d -/d + polarity “intervenes as a mediator owing to the fact that it allows the working out, in this area, of the question even of choice.”


It is very interesting to consider the factor d because it joins together pro-creative characteristics.

It is the accelerator of thought that uncouples the mooring ropes of the attachment to things.


Desire to accelerate, to take off, to uncouple.

The tendency d + is the requirement of shifting in view of a replacement. d + shows the wish for a new contact to come that mobilizes the contacting person while making him outline himself the movement of his future; here there is the will to change one’s life because the old one is not satisfactory any more. (Dessoy, 11, p. 168)


According to Kinable (15, pp. 193, 198):

It is the same question of the attachment to the lost primal object that is closed again over the past in d - while it opens on the future in d +… to formulate the instinctual requirement here in activity, let us think of this injunction of the agent of the police force: “TO CIRCULATE!”. Whatever your path, your destination, no matter where, but go forward, do not remain there.


The search for something signifies the distance from what satisfied before. To leave the known one supposes the mourning of something known that made us function before and that does not make us function any more, we do not want any more of this known. To make a search is in some sort to lose the bond with something to which we were attached. We necessarily do not have a different thing in compensation for it, there is a time delay inherent in the process of the search. However, in the inquiring diagnosis of the depressive forms of existence, we find  d +.


According to Anzieu, creation is connoted by depressive facets (3, p. 12):

To create, Mélanie Klein has understood that first the creator has to repair the object loved, destroyed and lost, and to restore it as a symbolic object, symbolizing and symbolized, i.e. ensured of a certain permanence in interior reality. It is, by repairing it, to be repaired oneself of the loss, mourning, and sorrow.

d -

 “d- is the brake that moors us to things and that makes us faithful.” Either faithfulness or the slowing down of the excessive movement of thought in the sense that one gives it: to slow down the thought in order to use it. Patrick, very often giving d-, stated: “I am not able to manage all the information that comes in through the “6” senses.” It is the clinging to the interior object that one does not want to lose.


d- is to have contacted and to stick obstinately to this first contact while trying to retain it and by this preventing the possibility of contacting a new environment. The person is not any more directly taking on things but is focused on his last catch. Szondi speaks about the tendency to preserve, to persist, and to stick to the old object.


Kinable stated in connection with d- (15, p. 176):

(...) like the tendency to get rid of and to challenge the new (refusal to let oneself be summoned by it in order to put oneself in search of this new thing or person) in order to stay, to remain there, not to seek and to refuse any change about it.

The Diagram of the Cycle


1.    Axes


We have chosen the ego vector as the base for our diagram in the sense where Jean Mélon (18) stated:

The comparison that one has since always made is the comparison to psychosis. That means that if there is an analogy to the pathological level, it is necessarily to psychosis that creation must be put into relationship. The ego according to Szondi is represented by the psychotics, i.e. those who have a problem on the level of the ego.


Mélon refers to Henri Maldiney (17) who himself was inspired by Wilhelm Worringer (“Abstraction and Einfühlung,” Klincksieck, 1978). Two axes are set up. The first relates to the representational facet -- Abstraction -- and the second is centered more on the sensory facets -- Einfülhung [empathy with, sensitivity, understanding of] .

The idea of the opposition between the two axes is a recurring idea in Maldiney because he opposes the two great forms of art: Abstraction and Einfühlung [Empathy]. These two concepts are drawn from an article of Worringer that goes back to 1911. k + is the formal position; it is the position of putting into form [mise en forme]. k – going in the sense of the destruction of these forms. (Mélon, 18).


The representational axis is the axis of the factor p while the sensory axis of putting into form is that of the factor k. We thus lay out the ego vector according to two axes -- the axis p and k -- each that have two poles: the pole of l’ipséité [the self, the individual, I] and that of l’altérité [the Other, they].  k+ and p+ are the two positions of each axis for l’ipséité. p- and k - are the positions that illustrate the pole of l’altérité on the two axes.


[Axe sensorial = sensory axis; Axe représentationnel = representational axis]


On the axis p, the “I” is in p + and the “they” in p -. His own look at his representation of self is in p + and the look of the others on his representation of self is in p-. It is the representational axis that relates to an image of oneself according to two poles: through his own look and that of the Other. With the axis k, it is about the axis of putting into sensory form. It relates to the sensory baggage according to two poles: that directed towards oneself and that directed towards the Other.


The access to the representation passes through the sensory and the emotional. The sensory makes a lever for the representation. To change representation, it is necessary to gain access to the sensory lever by a reshaping of one’s senses. “To play another part, the actor must initially not incarnate the preceding role anymore.”

2. Quarters


With the two axes we can break up the general schema into four quarters: k + p -, k + p +, k - p + and k - p -.


We think that each quarter constitutes a stage in the course of the creator.

1. Quarter k + p -

We can design two aspects according to whether one looks from the point of view of k + towards p - or that one looks at oneself from the point of view of p - that looks at k +. We think that the nature from the points of view between these two positions is sufficiently different “to make them to be considered.”


To locate the aspect of k + turned towards p -, the position of R. D. Laing is rather explicit within the framework of the current of anti-psychiatry to illustrate the point of view of k + compared to a p-. Indeed, one of its broad topics consists of what the experience and the behavior considered schizophrenic would represent as a particular strategy that a person would invent to support an unbearable situation.


But Maldiney is more categorical to underline the “combat of Titans” that hides sometimes in the search of l’ipseity [the self] faced with l’altérité  [the Other]:

The delirium is a combat of the Ego for existence, in order to maintain a certain precession [going first] of oneself to escape stagnation of its own possibility, delivered to the helpless supremacy of a destiny of no meaning and to the fatal consciousness “of being made” and “of being taken”… by another or others or by the altérité anonymity. The effort to be oneself through a presence in check of oneself is registered in the delirious language. Undoubtedly one pays attention to the common language. But how could the common language become the language of a world at the margin of the common world? How especially the capacity-being of a man threatened in his ipseity [individuality] could he try to bring into the light of day, in words absolutely his, by means of the concepts and of the categories of the ordinary language of communication, which is repugnant, by construction, to the expression of the singular? (Maldiney, 17, p. 65)


To enter virtuality by detachment makes one dismiss the influence of reality and the wounds to oneself coming from a world that can harm his world in himself. The detachment is an invisible barrier that protects the ego by a capitalistic withdrawal of the libido from one’s objects.


The aspect of p - turned towards k + is the point of view of the social (p-), and according to it, the look of k+ is disputed more. Indeed, a free and uncontrolled activity, controlled by pleasure, is incompatible with an economy based on saving, self-control and precaution.


It is here between these two points of view -- that of k + and that of p - -- that we find a schism in the nature of the viewpoints [des regards] that clash. One of these viewpoints is a judicious managing that eliminates the conflict:

Any schizophrenia is a psychic organization ready to last and a defense against the catastrophe. (...) This psychosis is thus a managing. (Racamier, 25, pp. 50-51)


The other viewpoint [regard] is that of a society on an individual who belongs to a system of laws and rules valid for all.





1.    Passage from k- to k+

This is the passage of the half-circle k - to the half-circle k +. What occurs when one passes from k - to k +?


One regresses in relation to the circuit of the ego. One leaves the reality principle to enter the pleasure principle. Reality leaves the place to the imagination. The sacrifice of the self is erased to the profit of a narcissistic position. We pass from the negation of oneself to introjection. We in turn pass from a centrifugal movement in k - (directed towards the Other and a distancing in relation to oneself) to a centripetal movement (directed towards oneself and a distancing in relation to the Other). The center of “perceptive and sensory gravity” moves from the other towards oneself. A great movement of internalization is set up. The libido leaves its objects and invests in the ego. “The ameba retracts its pseudopodes.”


One passes from a self-critical no to an oppositional no. In k -, the potential self-destruction nourished in a kind of hate of oneself is transformed into an omnipotence potential introjecting person of everything and nourished with a kind of hate for the Other. The hate seems to reinvest what the libido had abandoned and the libido seems to reinvest what the hate had abandoned.


The oppositional no person is necessary in this process to preserve his or feelings and his or her vision of things and to go further in order to perceive another thing. The oppositional no of k+ (“No!, I do not want to function any more like that even if two-thirds of the planet does so”) that is in opposition to something is different from the k – no that criticizes and that negates (“what I tell you is bragging, pay no attention”), i.e. which denies its own words. The oppositional no person forms a reaction against something. The self-critical no deconstructs.


To be opposed to something that is harmful to us, it is imperative to know to detect it, to understand it, and to encompass it in order to apply to it the negation that separates by the uttering of “no.” How to be opposed to what does not have a form, a face, a trace? Without this recognition, there is no opposition.


Very often, we have only a mixed intuition mitigated rather than a full and solid recognition that directs our course. The stage that consists in transforming this vague intuition into an effective and certain recognition of what can harm our identity is by far the most difficult stage to cross. All the procedure of the creative act will consist in capturing by means of putting it into form, through color and in words that of which one had the intuition.


While thus passing from k- to k+, one passes from an anti-creative reaction to a pro-creative reaction. Indeed, the attachment to the Other yields its place with the detachment. For the k+, the Other tends to virtuality [that which is not realized; that which does not have actual effect; potential existence]. This contamination of this virtual facet suitable for the detachment will also invade the rules and conventions of the Other. The law of the Other tends to become invisible. Questions appear and will fit in relational cement with the Other and, like the roots of the trees, these questions will fissure and tear apart the relation with the Other until the “block of stone breaks into pieces under the pressure of the roots.” The questions abound and the answers tend to being more precise and also more distinct; certain questions obtain answers that will not any more be called into question: choices are made. After a string of questions and answers, the view [le regard] toward things changes; the interest given to things changes.  Then, a new viewpoint [regard] appears; it has came silently.


k- tends to render virtual the world of the individual in his fantasy and narcissistic realm and to give a feeling of reality to what relates to the world of others. k+ does the reverse; it makes virtual the Other and what relates to it and it gives a feeling of reality to his own imagination. With k +, the senses and perception are quasi educated to take only into account what interests the creator, the rest holds on to that which it is: remains.


2. The “Break” [La faille: also the fault, the rupture, the fissure, the flaw]

The “break” could be defined as the discontinuity of the participation and as a crisis in the object relation.

2.1 The “wound with the Other”


We observe in the personal history of the creators during their youth the fact that they felt in their relation with the Other a negation of what they were. They would have undergone the look of extinction, the look of Gorgon. If the persons who denied them were the most important, then the interior blow is unspeakable. As Corneille said, the more the offender is beloved, the greater is the offense.


We will let the words of Alberoni (1, pp. 118-119) describe for us what each one of us perhaps can most fear in one’s life.

Little by little, in order to no more desire the person whom he has loved, he will have to find in himself the reasons to release himself from this love and he will have to seek to rebuild what he has experienced, investing with hate for all that was. By the hate he will try to destroy the past. (...) He must achieve the absolute transgression that consists in destroying what is the base of any value and of any hope. Then, all desire abandons it and the ego, which has lost its ontological dimension, is pushed back into the universe of appearances. Nothing has any more value and nothing does not any more have meanings. To act, he can only copy the gestures of the others, the everyday gestures such as he sees them and repeat what he knows to prove feelings that he had learned and to pronounce words emptied of their contents; it is petrification. The only true, deep feeling that he has experienced, marked from the painful stamp of authenticity, is nostalgia, the nostalgia of a lost reality. And to deny oneself nostalgia, one is constrained to fight with the past, to feed in oneself resentment and hate. He had known the good, the being who says yes; the bad, then, was only not to be. Now he must build the bad as being, the being who says no, the bad like the power of the negative.


The “being who says no,” because to say yes would be to disappear. Energy deployed to create resembles to be mistaken there with these colossal energies that are sourced in total despair and in vital urgency, when imagination starts to imagine its own scenarios of destruction.

Nobody knows where a point of no return is. The only signs are an interior revolt, a despair, an anticipation -- sometimes for a few hours -- of petrification. (Alberoni, 1, p. 136)


When the countdown started, the point of no return was in front of one, then like a last mischievousness, a “playful” jump, one diverts the energy of the urgency into a project that will crystallize what remains of his own forces. The hate is always a good adviser in these moments. Hate as the “ultimate essential reaction.”


This extract locates how the hate can be essential for leaving the petrification.


Georges near the age of four was abandoned by his parents who “could not care for him any more.” Jean-Marie was a teenager disjointed in relation to his environment, he was stared at and he stared at “the people there” at thirteen; he knew that he would leave his social environment because he did not feel any more at home there. Violence was usual for him by several methods going up to the most subtle: blackmail of a mother with death. Jeanne also knows violence, struck by her father for not having obtained 80% (she had obtained 79%) at school; she remembers another incident: having been pursued by her father with an axe in his hand, she took refuge in a church. JP had been in prison and had known the deep malaise of believing in values that society hid. Joseph was struck with poliomyelitis in Africa and lost the strength of his legs. He passed his childhood and his adolescence in hospitals. Pierre, Zéphyrin,  and Anne always felt “displaced” seeking their significance through marginality and the “forgotten.”


Zénon d'Elée was rather in the norm, a boy who followed the others and who did not feel the necessity of a creative course. Little before being registered at the university, he went to find his father to inform him of his decision. For him, this was a big step since the shock of the divorce of his parents had left him confused. Arrived at the home of his father, he speaks about his decision and at this point in time his father, speaking to him with the warmth of a benevolent father, says to him that he is absolutely not capable to do higher learning and who even advises him -- benevolent council -- “to give up all these ideas that are not made for you.” It is shortly after that Zénon felt profound shock; his father had not paid attention. A few years afterwards, Zénon had wolfed down book after book and had found himself with a first license [bachelor degree] at a university. Since this conversation with his father his internal search became a necessity for him. All his world was shaken.


These elements underline the shock and the violence that expels the creator from his old world.


At the beginning, the question then is in the relation with the Other: to be or not to be? Afterwards, following more wisdom, the question becomes: how not to be in order to be? That is, how to reconcile the negation of oneself in relation with the Other in order to exist with this other? What in oneself cannot be modified and what in oneself can be? The answer is to know oneself and creation is a path among the others.

2.2 Hate

The rage while being situated in a reflexive process that engulfs becomes a “tool.” A rage for the rage is sterile because not workable. Hate is a powerful factor of individualization. To discover the object in the hate creates a state in a process of the emergence of one’s own perception without which there would not be an I.


Let us see in what way hate is “productive of an altérité [an Other]” according to the expression of Jean Baudrillard.

“I hate” and this hate does not have an object; there is a passion without an object. It is as if “I express” or “I assume.” It is the kind of expression where the words creates themselves. They are formulated in the first person, but the object has disappeared. The hate is a subject without an object that speaks. (...) The hate is perhaps something that remains and that survives any definable object. (...) The hate remains an energy that lives on with all definable objects. The hate remains an energy, even if it is negative or reactionary.  The hate belongs to this paradigm of a reactionary and reparational passion: I reject, I do not want any of it, I will not enter into the consensus. That is not negotiated; that can not be reconciled. (Baudrillard, 6, p. 20)


Indeed, “I have hate,” and it is like a kind of final capital. But there is nevertheless a kind of altérité [otherness], somebody opposite, that can be always negotiated with in one way or another.


Returning from Australia, Baudrillard notes that:

The aboriginals -- anthropological extreme, but revealing -- have kinds of visceral and deep denial of what we can represent and of what we can be. As if these people had also hatred. There is something of the irremediable and of the irreducible. One will be able to lavish all the universal charity on them of which we are capable, trying to understand them and to love them; there is in them a kind of radical altérité [otherness] that does not want to be understood and that will never be. (Baudrillard, 6, p. 21)


The hate described here is not comparable to the hate of the classes according to Baudrillard. The hate of classes is different:

This hatred had an objective; it could be theorized and this has been done. It was formulated, it had a possible action, and it bore a historical and social action. It had a subject, the proletariat, structures, the classes, contradictions. (Baudrillard, 6, p. 21)


According to Baudrillard, the communication, while becoming universal, was accompanied by a fantastic loss of the altérité  [otherness]. There is no more other. Perhaps that people seek a radical altérité, and the best way of revealing it, as exorcizing it is perhaps the hate, desperate forms of production of the Other. In these meanings, the hate would be a passion in the form of provocation and challenge. The hate is something strong; it must provoke a poignant adversity….


The hate would be also the violent reaction to the fact that there is no solution and that there is no possible resolution of all the problems that history had posed.

That which remains of the energy would be reversed into a negative passion, a rejection, a repulsion. The identity today is in the rejection; it hardly has any more a positive foundation. It does not remain any more but with the anti-determiner by the expulsion of the other rather than by relation or emotional dialectical with him. (Baudrillard, 6, p. 22)


But Baudrillard goes further: he embeds hate in the human species as a reaction of life deeply engraved in us.

Perhaps the hate is vital, vital in the sense that if you do not have any more an enemy, an adversity, an antagonism, at least virtual, it is the worst that can happen. Remove from a species its natural predators, and it destroys itself. There is a vital transformation, a kind of balance that implies that there is an other, and a malicious other, an enemy. If one does not have to defend oneself any more, one ends up destroying oneself. This is what I called depredation, depredation in the sense that one is deprived of predators. Hate is perhaps also an ultimate vital reaction. (...) There is a residue that is not treated because it is not treatable; it becomes inevitably residual and negative, and changes naturally into hate. (Baudrillard, 6, p. 23)


It is, we think, this force that is underlying the creative course. We think we are able to locate it in k + in partnership with e -. This hate appears in the profiles when the creator is opposed in his search often in relation to concerns coming from the other persons. On the other hand, when he can give himself to creation, the hate seems “consumed” by the process. We even think that the hate can take the face of d +! which, in the case of Anne, would mean: “I cannot hate the others without my being made to feel guilty; then I transfigure the hate by an intense search that unceasingly cuts the ties that are created.” We will try to clear up this last point in the analysis of the results.


The qualitative jump of no of the catatonia in its negative aspect (k-) into its positive aspect (k+) that passes from critical no to oppositional no is also a passage from an anti-creative position to a creative position.


The idea would be that the oppositional no person realigns the individual if he is associated with a center of p + gravity that enables him to enter into creation. The emotional engine that gives this coherence and this cement of the person vis-à-vis the world would be the hate. Hate as the ultimate generating vital reaction of the altérité [otherness]. The enemy is in front of oneself and no more in oneself; the “combat” can start.

2.3 Possible Psychoanalytical Meanings of the Break [la faille]


If participation originates in fusion with the Other, the stage of pre-subject--pre-object, the relation mother-child; then, the break [la faille] considered as a rupture of the projection-participation is a process that originates in the separation of the mother with the child.


If we take as established the psychoanalytical fact that stipulates a desire of returning to the origins, to the womb of the mother, in a world without tension, of total plenitude; we can consider without too much digression that the incestuous desire is one of the principal methods of this desire of returning to the origins.


The break  [la faille] becomes thus the reactualization of the non-participation and, to extrapolate, it is also non-satisfaction of the incestuous desire in reality and the incompleteness that will follow from this. We wish to state that the break [la faille] would be the total impossibility of  being able to satisfy in reality the greatest and most powerful of our unconscious desires: the desire for union with one’s origin.


Symbolic Murder of the Father

The creators say no, they react against. This would be a symbolic murder of the father because of saying “no” to the others. However, reason, the law (of the others) is inscribed in the figure of the father.

To create is always in a certain way to kill somebody, the killing being facilitated if this somebody has just died because one can kill him or her with less feeling of guilt. One of the largest internal obstacles to creation remains indeed culpability. (...) The creative course, let us repeat, is not unequivocal: according to the types of geniuses, or productive times, to create, for them, consists in killing symbolically a death person and, for others, in killing symbolically the living. (Anzieu, 3, p. 10)


The culpability of the creators is strong and as Michel Mathieu stressed it (3, pp. 104-105):

This culpability is attached to the fantasy act that the creator perpetrates on the person of the father: a symbolic murder. As through the symbolic murder of the father, it is the question of the Oedipal identification that is in play -- here am I -- indeed, at the heart of the problem. (...) The sudden appearance of the creative energy would aim at surpassing the father, replacing the investment of the object by a transformation, total or partial, of oneself.


Michel Mathieu (3, p.112) goes further in proclaiming that:

For Freud, the artist kills the father symbolically; he becomes through that a recognized hero of the public.


Classically, the murder of the father is a matter of affects initially. If this should be located in some part in the Szondian schema, it is from the side of e -. It is initially an affect. The idea of the murder of the father is generated by the fact that there is an obstacle that, suddenly, emerges on the path of the realization of the desire. The father is the object of hate only because he comes to interpose.


The conception of Chasseguet-Smirgel starts from a Freudian conception of the artist as an anarchist who refuses the law and who refuses to be subjected to the common law. He does not want to be k - because to be k - would be like saying one accepts the common reason.

2.4 Philosophical Interpretation of the Break [la faille]
2.4.1 “Que philosopher est apprendre à naître ” [Whoever philosophizes is to learn how to be born]

This is the title of an article of Eric Clémens on the thought of Max Loreau entitled “La genèse des phénomènes” [The Genesis of Phenomena] in the editions of Minuit, Paris, 1989.


Max Loreau is located in the phenomenological tradition all while introducing a conception that tends to put him “at the end point” of phenomenological thought.

Undoubtedly, his thought tends towards the phenomenon, of which he inflects already appearance as innate, but his stand is reinforced with what this genesis cannot have a place, for philosophy itself is in a logical fiction…. (Clémens, 10, p. 78)


According to Clémens, Loreau thinks of phenomenon as formation, history, appearance, becoming -- but excluding of any form, of any end, of all views or all givens and of any presence or any appropriation.

Besides to determine always comes back to deny or to deprive, a venerable philosophical story, and to deny a determination and to deny a negation does not make change of course. The rigorous criticism that leads Loreau faced with any negative ontology [in philosophy, the nature of reality], all “retreats,” any regressive or destructive method (...) appears to me logically unanswerable. It follows from that that another thought can only be itself a beginning in order to think the beginning, the genesis, the emergence. If necessary to be specific it is not in any case the search for a point of origin that would be the oldest, but well its requirement is to be itself a movement of birth and origination? (Clémens, 10, p. 79)


Thus, according to Clémens, the method of Loreau is based on a logical criticism that requires that what is rejected does not serve for negative reference and does not dictate with a wrong side what will be the progressive thought; it calls on the contrary, in any consequence, with the pure and simple disappearance of what it criticizes.

In short, it passes logically and methodically from the criticism of logic to the genetic fiction. Better: since the logical consequence of criticism is the requirement of nothing of the presupposed, of the given view and of denial-reversed, it obliges with the creation and with the original shaping, which can be said only to be like fiction, since nothing of the original imagination, but without ever giving up the rigor: what makes a philosophical fiction of it. (Clémens, 10, p. 80)


The question is not: is there or is not there a world? but: how does it emerge?

The genesis is at the same time splitting and formation. The question becomes consequently: what made at the same time the irruption and the formation -- and of what kind can it be as anterior to oneself? Neither things, nor even bodies, nothing else than the words, which are nothing before being uttered. It is not a question to say that before the genesis there is nothing: before the genesis there is nothing to say. But it is a question of saying the genesis that is nothing and can be only nothing. However, from a different point of view, the word is never given, it is a movement of becoming: the genesis is rightly the genesis of the word -- first approach of fiction. Not in the sense of the utterance, but the word as “dissidence” or “discordance” whose rupture involves another relation to the language that is the given, constituted, determined language. (Clémens, 10, p. 83)


According to Clémens, when the word is not folded back on an already-seen or already-heard, it does not belong to what is visible, it carries in it an other element that occurs in the visible one. The word breaks the continuity of the visible and the unity of the view and of the seen, the only way of establishing the contact with the visible. In the uttering, it makes itself heard, it is “hearing” that means to move away to within oneself, to lay out and consequently produce a gap in the visible without which this one would not be seen: “for the procession of the sight, one needs a view of the view that interrupts and discerns” (Clémens, 10, p. 83).

This double differenced, in the utterance and the vision, introduced a double fiction by a double contact: the utterance causes a contact with the visible that involves a contact of visible with itself. And this double contact is entirely imaginary; it is a fiction of feeling and logos [the word: in Plato: the god of ideas] that forms what one could call the unlimited body of fundamental imagination. All separations -- of sight and other meanings like front and back -- formative of the body born from there and do not cease being born: the fiction is the perpetual change without which no phenomenon appears. (Clémens, 10, p. 83)


The fiction is thus according to Loreau the infinite self-becoming [l’auto-avènement] of the logos of the body. But how does this rupture made its formation? How does the dissidence of the word become fiction?  How doesn't it remain with this yawning abyss and with chaos open between front and back and seeing and not-seeing?

The logos, the occurring word, the utterance takes place only on the mode of “as if”: the thought makes as if the logos were not yet, although it makes use of it. It is the same condition so that anything new and inventive emerges there. This implies that the word does not answer to any end and to any determination, therefore it can only appear “gaping chaos” that it opens. But at the same time, it opens itself, it is placed outside itself, it is made logos of logos -- thus relation and first formation. (Clémens, 10, p. 84)


The rupture produces the discrepancy that by the distance from oneself with oneself operates a returning where the difference becomes a formative relation: such is the essence of the genesis and its fiction.


The formation is indeed a view, but a doubled view, a view of the view (from a distance), a view imagined originally by the word that frees itself and clarifies itself.

Only the cry, the utterance of the inhuman, which does not say anything, but which draws aside from itself and deviates from itself, can make a return on oneself and understand what it is, to address oneself to oneself -- to become oneself, to become human. (...) If the fiction is indeed  the self-construction of the beginning, the logos of the logos is the fiction since in it “the logos is the fiction of the logos. (...) The fiction is rolling up on oneself of the logos, through this “fiction of oneself,” “self-construction of the logos.” (Clémens, 10, p. 85)


The fiction is recounted in two times. Initially, logos of the moment is a dazzling rip and cry that hollows the vacuum. Then, it can continue only in the vacuum thus created, that to traverse it and to be discovered there by discovering it, to be logos of logos whose movement of differentiation generates phenomenality. “Only, the instantaneous effect operates for establishment of the logos among the phenomena of the world.” (Clémens, 10, p.85)

… to think becomes to be born, give birth to, to think is the fiction of birth where the being and the thought, the phenomenon and the saying appearing as co-births. Always threatened by indifference and death, the fiction is the infinite birth of the difference, of the body, of the language, of the world of the man who is finished only for infinity. (Clémens, 10, p. 86)


Each person has a logos that constitutes the collection of lived experiences, the collection of the ideas to which this person adheres, the theoretical base on which each one performs one’s choices in life, which gives meanings to the actions that we carry out in our life.


The break [La faille] could be conceptualized as the rupture of the logos and the rupture of the continuity of the logos. New logos, if all goes well, will install itself, i.e. the logos of the logos. More precisely, logos of his old logos, like a view of the old view. It is henceforth a question of seeing oneself seeing the things, to see oneself understanding the things. The new logos is in a “méta” [in between] position compared to the old logos.


This logos of the logos will be built gradually. The essence of what one lived is altered in a new logos. The passage of old to new would be this fissure [faille] where the elements are suspended in the course of the things by the thought.


The logos is generally a collection of representations. Those calibrate perceptions so that they agree with the image of oneself that one wants to promote. To find a new logos then requires an altering of its representations. This is possible if one’s sensibility allows the construction of such representations. What wants to be expressed in order to nourish the new representations is undoubtedly necessary to reconfigure one’s own perceptive capture as its putting into form in a design different from the old way.


The break [La faille] would be this experience-limit that inexorably leads us to detach ourselves from to what we were attached, with this logos previous to the break. The break makes a distance of oneself to oneself.


In the uttered word, we find, according to Max Loreau, this view of the view. This star-like distance of the visible that becomes perceptible through an outside thanks to the word.


The break ejects us from our logos and the load-bearing word leads us towards a precession [going first] of saving oneself in the act of uttering its new logos. When this is made a body, representations, and finally a new image of oneself, we will have found an identity.


To say to oneself: “I would like to be such or such a thing” or “I will manage to achieve my goal” or “I was this way, but henceforth I will not let myself any more be like that”; this leads to a relation to oneself by means of a word that expresses a self in the state of becoming. This self in the state of  becoming is in filiation with the subject that states the “I” of discourse, but this self anticipated and uttered in the word is a self that carries the mark of an altérité [otherness]. This altérité results owing to the fact that the object of the discourse is a self that one has constructed, it is a self that does not exist yet. Its altérité [otherness] rests on the concept that the I of the discourse is offered towards an image of a self that will be integrated in a reflexive relation with oneself. But it is initially necessary to consolidate this image in a formation. This I who is the object of the discourse is not accessible as I-reflexive but as an I-image anticipated from oneself in a creative fiction of oneself.


Let us see in what Henri Maldiney detects the altérité [otherness] registered in the object of creation (17, p. 62):

What Schelling called “the objectivity” of the work and that is -- more radically -- its reality, is imposed on us, like any reality, in a meeting. Any meeting is meeting of another, of an altérité [otherness]. (...) But the altérité [the other] of the work of art, in its radiant and fetching manifestation, has this of the specific and the paradoxical that it is a transparent altérité [otherness], and not opaque like that of the thing. (...) The characteristic of esthetic perception is not to be intentional. Structures constitutive of our presence with it and, through it, all -- beginning with our driving space -- are the same structures of the work. Our opening to the work is a co-presence at the foundation of participation. It blames directly the question indivisibly ontological and ethics which is most fundamental of existence -- that of the relation of l’ipséité* and l’altérité [the Other]. [*l’ipséité: oneself; in philosophy: that which makes a being oneself and not the other]


Thus, this word between oneself and a “self becoming” makes it possible to create a relation with oneself. This precession* of oneself allows an exchange between two entities: that which express the movement to being and that which is the object of this movement. It inscribes between oneself and oneself a specular relation with oneself. Indeed, it is “I-reflexive” that creates and anticipates another I and to anticipate it creates an “I-image” as when we look at ourselves in a mirror: I see in the mirror an image of myself that I can use to guide myself. It is in this sense that the word can make emerge a specular relation with oneself. At the same time, this word installs between oneself and oneself a real exchange that makes it possible for I-reflexive to occur of itself because this word prevents, in the best case, from closing itself with oneself in a mental autarky that does not evolve any more -- being satisfied with itself. [*precession: a movement of a rotating body that -- from the exertion of two bodies – proceeds on its course]


This word puts a distance between oneself and oneself and by doing this, it registers a fissure [une faille] in our unity. To accept this incompleteness that pushes us with going towards others opens in us the possibility of changing. But, for that to occur, it is necessary to accept this fissure of our unity in order to have the required time to pass through the transition between what I am now and what I will be afterwards.


This incompleteness is basically intrinsic to the movement of the desire. The thought of Lacan tends in this sense; listen to one of his disciples (Nasio, 23, p. 52).

Where the desire does not achieve its goal, I want to say where the desire fails, a positive creation emerges, a creative act is constituted.


The desire rests on a lack of something, it aims the spirit towards something. It is concomitant of this fissure [faille] in us. We could even dare to add that without this fissure [faille], there is no desire.

For this reason Lacan characterized the desire hysterical and, therefore, any desire as fundamentally dissatisfied, since it is never realized fully; it is realized only with fantasies and through symptoms. It seems important to me to stress this always dissatisfied character of the desire. (Nasio, 23, p. 49)


It is in the sense that the most powerful unconscious desire, the incestuous desire, the desire for returning to the origin is generated by an insuperable break [faille] and that could be formulated as follows: “If I exist as a differentiated being, it is because I am the movement that separates me from my origins, i.e. the point where all turns over towards the lack of differentiation.” In other words, the break [la faille] is not the result of the omnipotence of the incestuous desire. According to Lacan, any desire diverts this fundamental tension into multiples of small wishing tensions.


Therefore, where the word -- a word of the exchange with an altérité is registered in oneself or in the other -- stops, the precession of oneself grows blurred. There is no more opening in anticipation of one’s own being.


To abolish the indivisible space between the desire for a return to the origin and its satisfaction is to become again fetal. To maintain this indivisible space is to register in our being the rupture [faille] of the desire; it is to maintain the impetus of the desire, i.e. the movement tending towards others and things.


To bear one’s fault [faille] is to carry one’s destiny-choice as a differentiated being who moves away, the heart in the soul, of the lack of differentiation of the beginnings where time was folded up in only one movement.


Henri Maldiney (17, p.61) allows us to make the connection with the Szondian system. Let us leave the last word to him:

The ego “pontifex oppositorum,” builder and promoter of bridges between opposites, builds initially its own interior bridge. The first break [faille] that it has to cross and on which all the others depend is that which it is. It constitutes a line of fracture and division corresponding to the diffraction of the Ego according to two plans of presence: that of the analysis of the destiny named destiny-constraint and destiny-choice. According to the first the ego is only drive, i.e. nature. According to the second it only exists in a strict and full sense of the word: it exists to anticipate itself through its instinctual constitution that it goes beyond all the possibilities that open in itself in this precession of oneself. It is starting from this issue that it originates. (...) Whether it crosses the break or not, it gives a meaning to the break [la faille]: a meaning of direction from nature to freedom.


This word of the destiny-choice will be load-bearing if it remains and if it is registered and materializes into a putting into form. This capture of this word injects in it a materiality and a density that makes it pass imperceptibly into the concrete.


So that this word destiny-choice takes shape, it needs a “body” articulated according to written words, words uttered again and again, gestures, movements, colors, forms…. This “plastic” facet (Roget definition: Who has the capacity to give form) of the creative word is the mark of his furrow in the mental.


The anchoring of the new logos (which has its source in the word uttered in the precession of oneself in the place known as the fault [la faille]) in reality thus behaves as a plastic stage.

It (the work of art) only exists to cross the fault [la faille] that it opens in itself, while realizing, in the evidence of its appearance, the impossible passage of freedom to nature. (...) It requires and exceeds the operation that produces it. This is an act of freedom. However the work is presented as a “objectivity” that goes beyond the subjective side of the conscious and free activity. We can follow indeed in it the paths of its creation. (Maldiney, 17, p. 61)


If our life is of a “distracting” continuity, it is not very favorable to creation because the motivation to find a logos is not felt because the actual logos fulfills its role well. The persons who enter into creation very often do not have a choice. They feel badly at ease and do not find their center of existential gravity within the model recommended and developed by their society. If they want to continue to function as they wish it, they must reinvent a new logos that will become their personal myth.


The fault [La faille] would take its place as the solution of continuity between the basic look [le regard basal] and the look of the look [le regard du regard], the passage from the inside of a system towards the outside of this system. The basic look can be described as the participative look; it is a look inside the things and that tends clearly not to break away from this thing. The look of the look is a perception on this first perception: that tends “to break” the participation.


If the “I” of the creative discourse and of the creative fiction is an “I” that takes its essence in the looking at the participative looking, it can be only in p+. The creative fiction being either with a participative looking (p-) or with a self-constitutional looking (p+). On the other hand, the root and the source of the creative intuition can be only in the “flux of the world” and in the universe as containing all our individualities, i.e. in p -. The trajectory of creation is consequently that which goes from the root to “I” thinking about its root. From the material to the abstract, a vast movement of making a distance is organized in order to make emerge the human thought bearing the “spirit of creation.”


From the fetus to the psychoanalyst man, the thought procreates his trajectory in order better to play “the Play of Creation,” a play that consists in surpassing oneself more and more and whose finality consists in knowing the program that makes us function so as to push still further. The destiny-choice is perhaps to arrive at the point of his program in order to create the continuation. All art to create would then consist in not entering a dead end, i.e. to repeat indefinitely the same thing.

2.5 Illustration of the Break [la Faille] by a Profile

This is a profile “outside the course” of Anne, dated 7/28/95. She says herself that she is attracted by fusion and she fights against it. Concretely, that means for her that she is in “lack of the Other” and that she wants to plunge into it and to forget her personal search. She feels bad. She presents symptoms as a “swelling” in the throat and of esophagi-gastric acidity; she has been anorexic for a few days. She tends to drink many beers and to leave in debt at bars strongly attended by a multitude of people wanting to have fun.


She presents an ego k + p -. Her comments summarizes the situation: “I have brilliant ideas for my dissertation,” [k+] and she adds “but I am afraid that they will not be accepted within the framework of the academic view.” (p -).


profile: Av = h -! s 0 e ±  hy ± k 0   p 0   d + m -

                     Ar =  h 0 s ± e 0 hy 0  k +! p -!  d + m ±

[Av = Foreground; Ar = Background [E.K.P., not Th.K.P.]

We can schematize her profile like this:


From the start, we see with the foreground, an “empty” ego in Sch and the affects in P in a “catastrophe” position: all the positions are present as if facing a threat.


By referring to the positions on the cross, we see a tugging between a specular reference in the glance of the other (p -!) that is at this time the only judge; and, a secondarily in k +! that pushes strongly for a strictly private use of her senses and her perceptions for the capture of a representation that is alas personal, i.e. situated in k +. It is thus incompatible for Anne to accept this personal assumption without calling in question this viewpoint [regard] of the Other.


However, on the side of the affects is indecision, a superego faced side by side with the hate. Indeed, the superego e+ hy- and the hate not censured e- hy + are both present in e± hy±. The affects are not for her a great use to slice through this situation because they say yes and no. What to do: to act or to submit? The same thing is the blocking in the questioning situated in the ambivalence in factor s.


The question is: aren't these brilliant ideas too “disturbing” in one way or another for ethics and the viewpoint of the Other, specifically the university and its famous requirements? Finally, one can pose the question: what am I worth? My ideas that I believe brilliant are they indeed brilliant? It is in these remote regions where one feels pushed to one side and repulsed from the other side that the choice is imposed especially when the stake is high. How to choose?


It is at this crossroads that the affects can slice through and decide between those that are accepted and those that are denied in order to leave the place to the viewpoint of the Other whatever be their reason.


What affect can slice through the situation? The answer is the hate that says no to the other and strengthens one’s own being in the defensive in order to preserve what the individual regards as essential. The productive hate for the l’altérité as Bachelard puts it.


Or then in fact the superego says “drop it, the stake is not worth a candle.” However, precisely with Anne, who has a rather powerful superego that makes her feel guilty and that prevents her from yielding to her hate, this affect that could help her not to waste time while being blocked. Indeed, she does not want to let go of her ideas, but she does not know how to do it. She knows herself to be subjected to the influence of her superego: “Each time I was aggressive with somebody, I must repair even for my animals tricks; then, I say the things with the smile. That sticks!”.


It is the choice between keeping silent under the common viewpoint [regard] and to be “afraid” of it and the fact of assuming one’s being, one’s sensory style, one’s viewpoint [regard] and one’s destiny.  The second solution requires one to negotiate with one’s superego, to activate less social affects, in short, to make in some part a symbolic murder of an important person in her eyes and of her substitutes.


This is an illustration of what we call the fault [la faille], i.e. the moment when the participation with the other is called into question in important existential realms. The others have some part in us and imprint a “Northern” direction. But in one’s soul and conscience, the individual knows at the same time as to what one feels as one’s own being calls it in a “Southern” direction. One must choose because the two tendencies are strong and fight to take “its share of the cake.” It is all the psychic economy that seems to us at play in these moments.


To pass the fault [la faille] is “to lose much” and “to gain enormously” because henceforth, there are two points of view: that of the others and yours. To choose a point of view gives the sense of a trajectory. In the case of one’s own point of view, it is the trajectory of the differentiation of the Other in oneself and of the distance in relation to the Other in order to come closer to oneself. It is a trajectory that tends towards creation.

3. To perceive Is to See the Difference

Bateson states that at the base of the perceptive act itself, there is a difference. To perceive is to see a difference. To perceive something mental, it is necessary to bring about a difference within one’s own self. We will reconsider this facet amply when we speak about the sensory and perceptive capture.


By doing this we redouble ourselves in the act even of perceiving, i.e. to perceive that which one wants to distance from oneself as being different henceforth from oneself while still forming part of oneself. All this stresses the great importance of a reappropriation of what one wants to be within one’s self.


One of the functions of k + would be the reappropriation of its mental fields by a distancing (withdrawal of investment from what makes an obstacle) that is expressed by the oppositional no to what tends to limit and to close our possibility of imagination’s expansion. That would mean the negation of the negation of k -, oppositional no distancing itself from the self-criticism no, k + denies k -.


This is also to enter a “narcissistic field.”


It seems preferable to us to speak about a narcissistic relation to oneself within the meaning of a specular relation with oneself rather than to speak about narcissism and about a narcissistic structure. Jean Mélon (18) thinks that “the work, be it plastic or literary, has always something to be seen as the image of the body. Therefore, whoever builds his house, builds it according to his image of the body, but there are obviously people who do not invest like that. But if one is invested, one builds it with the image of the body.”


To speak about a relation induces the idea of a distance to oneself. Jean Mélon (18) thinks:

“that there are several narcissisms and that this narcissism k + is a narcissism of form and thus that returns us to the first form that is the image of the body. To put into form is always to find again the jubilation that Lacan evokes in connection with the mirror stage; it is the same jubilation in front of the work of art; the artist is a little like a father who would abandon his children.”

4. The Sensibility and the Perception

We will try to question the relation between the perception and the world of senses. We will base our ideas on the thesis of Etienne Dessoy (11, pp. 293-301) who allows us to enter clearly the world of the senses according to Erwing Straus, “Le sens des sens. Contribution à l’étude des fondements de la psychologie”  [The Meanings of the Senses. Contribution to the Study of the Basics of Psychology] (29).


If fusion is tested in the world of the senses and that perception detaches the look [le regard] from its object of perception, this detachment is a rupture in the link that plunges us within the senses. How is that possible since we bathe continuously in this sensory bath?

Dessoy (11, p. 293) answers that:

Perceptions are produced by a going beyond the perspective link defined by each particular point of view and by a going beyond of the horizon of the landscape. In other words, perceptions can appear only while being temporarily released from the senses. Straus insists on this necessity of a jump or a rupture with the senses in order to reach perceiving. He stresses that if perception is an objective knowledge, it is only on the condition that perception is sensory perception and the determination of the sensory impression. But he warns us: this determination is not an actual “fusion of impression” and lasting because in the process of determination, the immediate character of the sensory impression is sacrificed; it is in this meaning that it should be understood that by showing something, we break the horizon of the sensory experience and we enter a new world.

Dessoy quotes E. Straus (29, p. 531):

Perception is not a simple summary, a simple repetition of the impressions of the world of sensation. It is not the summary of a process of comparison and differentiation; only the rupture of the horizon of the sensory experience makes possible the comparison and the determination.


E. Straus insists on the fact of differentiating the sensation of perceiving and on the fact of not making the perceived an entity that would synthesize or would summarize the sensation. For him, to sense can appear in no manner as a prefiguration or a primitive form of perceiving. It makes of sensing a world “with full membership.”


“Perception is a reflexive process.” Straus stresses that the word perception has also a reflexive significance, in the act of perceiving, “I stop the closed-circuit current of sensation in order to orient myself towards the object, but also towards myself.


At the same time, if the object is taken as one “in oneself,” the look [le regard] that we put in our perception of the object can also be to it taken as one “in oneself.” From there is born the idea of a look on a look [un regard sur un regard].


By doing this, the object of perception does not any more concern the subject, and, in fact, this object does not any more prevent the subject from being detached from its object.


It is the distinctive feature of the participative look [regard] to consolidate on the same base that which looks at and the looked-at thing, i.e. that makes the subject to participate in the inside of the looked-at thing, which makes it possible to form a unit with the looked-at thing. The prototypic example of this participative look is the look of the baby with respect to its mother. The amorous look in him is obvious to understand as this type of look makes us “stick” to the looked-at thing without possibility of emerging from the inside of this sensation. It is a look that tends to the lack of differentiation. Without a difference, there is no separation.


The manner of being in the sensation falls under a ceaseless communication between the subject and the object where it becomes almost impossible to divide the two entities in as much the world of sensation obliges the “subject” to form a unit with its “object.” Dessoy speaks about pre-subject in the world of sensation.


On the other hand, it is exactly the reverse of this participative look that occurs in the look that pursues the trajectory of the creative process. The basic logical movement of this trajectory is, according to us, the distancing. The distancing is finalized in the process itself. That means that the process sets in motion itself -- it is in its nature -- the distancing. It is expressed in the principle of differentiation: the difference as indivisible distance.


On this trajectory is a passage that corresponds to an exiting of the world of sensation via the perceptive act. In “detaching” the look of the subject placed in the pre-subject in the world of sensation, the perception “strikes” [sidère] the world of sensation and makes occur the source of this look as a subject.


It is not esoteric to postulate at this time the establishment of what we could call “a perceptive interiorized center of gravity” that imprints with perception a center of which operates its original filiation. It is the participation with the other that is destroyed in the sense where it revolves around a center of gravity located in the relational interval or inside of the bond of sensation that ties the looking to the looked-at thing. The passage from sensation to perception would be reducible to the displacement of the center of gravity of our being to the world in us, i.e. apart from this interval.

 In these senses, the rupture of the contact is a push towards objective differentiation to the condition that the person does not cease reconnecting. On the contrary, the fusional contact imposes the lack of differentiation…. (Dessoy, 11, p. 301)


In the passage between sensation and perception, the position m + -- especially if it is associated with p - -- is that which is consistent with sensation, in the inside of the look that participates, the look that tends to the lack of differentiation. It is the look that cancels the differences. Its existential center of gravity is located in the interval.


The position m - assumes the rupture of the contact with the world of sensation especially if it is associated with a p+. The position m - is registered consequently apart from the participation, in the look that tends to differentiation, therefore, that tends to make emerge differences. Its existential center of gravity is interiorized. As a rupture of the horizon of the sensory experience, it is a position favorable to the establishment of perception.

5. To Startle [Sideration*]

 [*Sideration: to startle; to strike something, to dumbfound; to astonish; to strike one to the point of the person seeing stars (the etymology of sideration is stars); to be struck down as by lightening or a blast]

If you are followed by a wandering dog that will not stop following you in spite of your efforts to dissuade it from following you and if you cannot detach it from you, you are then obliged “once and for all to strike” [sidérer] this dog by showing him once and for all your clear intention in this connection by a kick, a cry, a throwing of an object, etc. By doing this the dog “is focused” on you as a subject and stops following you. Consequently, between you two, a distance is created, a distance that would not have been possible if the dog had stuck all along the way with you.


This is a little like the same thing on the level of perception. To make visible an object of perception, it is necessary initially a striking [sidérer], give it a contour, a limit, a seizable form by the senses,…. Once this sideration is established, perception can consequently be unblocked and can place an external look at this object that is seen such as it is.


The refusal of the verisimilitude of things is registered accordingly. Kandinsky is rather eloquent on this subject:

 The disintegration of the atom meant for me the disintegration of the whole world. In one moment, the thickest barriers crumbled. All became uncertain, unsteady, weak. I would have been by no means astonished to see a stone dissolving in the air and thus disappearing completely. (Dûchting, 12, pp. 10-11)

6. Detachment or “Disengaging”

Marcel Proust in “A la recherche du temps perdu” [Remembrance of Things Past] gives us a possibility of introducing this facet.

In order to go for a drive, it is not necessary to have the most powerful automobile, but an automobile that does not continue to run ahead and cross a vertical the line that it followed is able to convert into upward force its horizontal speed. In the same way those who produce brilliant works are not those who live in the most delicate environment and who have the most brilliant conversation and the most extensive culture, but those who have the capacity, abruptly stopping [all this] to live for themselves, making their personality similar to a mirror, so that their life, if mediocre indeed in that it could be mundane and even, in a certain sense, intellectually speaking, reflect itself there, the consistent genius in the reflecting capacity and not in the intrinsic quality of the reflected view. (24, p. 555)


We have here in this extract the possibility of illustrating the distancing movement of creation by using the metaphor of Marcel Proust on the course of an automobile. It is a matter, in fact, of passing from a horizontal line to a vertical line “without raising the resistance,” i.e. in a solution of continuity in any course. What Proust proposes metaphorically is a passage between two planes. The important thing is not to locate each plane in themselves but in the relationship between them. It is the crossing, not the contents, that is the movement of creation.


How to reach this upward movement on the basis of a horizontal movement? It is the logic of the movement of the creation that gives us the key. In fact, according to us, creation obeys this basic logical formula: to move away as much as possible.




The horizontal line gives the movement from which it is necessary to move away. How to move away as much as possible? The maximum distance is situated at an angle of 90 degrees. If we are below this angle, we do not move away as much as is possible. Beyond 90 degree, our distance brings us closer to the base line. In this case, it is a little as if one took the counter-current but all the while always locating in the same realm, the same plane. This is what illustrates the two dotted arrows that lean towards the direction of the base line.


The only direction that moves away as much as possible is the vertical, upward line. Indeed, this direction is that of another plane. No possibility of approaching the base line with this direction.


Here illustrated metaphorically and schematically the disengaging, the detachment, the movement of which the beginning of the creative movement that, according to us, is to move oneself away as much as possible.

The authors who were interested in the experimental study of creativity defined this time as that of “divergent thought,” i.e. which diverges from the stereotypes and the standards, by dissociation from the usually associated elements. A correct description, but impoverishing, of the process.... (Anzieu, 3, p. 4)


If the person’s look [regard] follows this upward movement with respect to oneself, it opens for itself the possibility of a specular [mirror-like] relation. One can look at oneself living, thinking, speaking, and even reasoning. This is a mirror to oneself.


The person’s look becomes the object of his looking and by doing this, the looking at the look [le regard du regard] is the result of a qualitative jump and of another nature according to two different planes inscribed under the same banner, that of the unity of the creator beyond this specular relation with himself or herself.


We tried to trace the trajectory of the creative look and its principle of direction in its logical nakedness. Simply and terribly effective, the logic of the moving away “as much as possible” infallibly will lead us to return our looking on our own looking. And, there is only one looking of another nature that can move away from this basic looking.


The possibility of being affected by this looking on a looking is registered in the experience of the detachment whose paroxysm is located at the moment when it is our own looking that is the object of this “disengaging.”

7. The Capture

Thus, from another side, there is a capture in the sense where what one wants to promote must be captured in order to be injected in oneself and in order to collect and to capture in the ceaseless flux of what is happening in order to prevent it from escaping. Thus, the putting into form that which corresponds henceforth to oneself will consist in selecting in the sensory and conceptual flux what corresponds to the new image of what one wants to promote. This is the function of k +.


In k +, there is seizure of an image of oneself in its sensibility, all the more strong as its identity is threatened with disintegration. This is what the catatonic schizophrenic expresses intensely. It has a movement of capture in our perception and of putting into form of what is judged to be oneself. We will draw from the immense flood of information that our senses collect at every moment:

By the sensory organs, we collect in the environment a tremendous amount of information (a billion bits) of which only one weak part (ten to hundred bits) becomes conscious to us. (28, p. 274)


Music, ceramics, painting, the sculpture…requires on the whole a perceptive capturing that is worked out in a personal relation. The creators use their senses for their use to build an image of oneself by oneself.

 By defining us as passive agents of perception, the language dissimulates how we take part in our sensory experience. For example, each one of us knows that electric bulbs produce light, and it seems natural to say “to extinguish the light” or “to light the light.” But does the bulb produce the light? A physicist would say that the electrons are propagated in the filament of the bulb that, when it became rather hot, emits electromagnetic waves that act on the rods and the cones of the retina of the eye. Under these conditions, an observer situated in an appropriate way and with the nervous system functions normally, has the experience of the light. (...) By defining the light as a property of the electric bulb, the language dissimulates how we take part ourselves in our sensory experience, since the light is then defined as an objective property of the world, i.e. independent of the observer. (Segal, 27, pp. 55-56)


We turn now to Bateson to question the subjective threshold of our representations.

The thesis of this book…rests on the idea that science is a way of perceiving and to give what one can call “a meaning” to the perceived things. But perception is carried out only by differences. To receive information, it is necessarily to receive awareness of a difference, and any perception (of a difference) is limited by a threshold. The too feeble differences or those that intervene too slowly are not perceptible: they cannot be used as food for perception. It follows from that that what we, as scientists, can perceive will always be limited by a threshold. That means that all that is subliminal will not bring water to our mill. Knowledge at every given moment will be a function of the thresholds of our means of available perception. (Bateson, 5, p. 35)


This is what makes Bateson state that “science probes; it does not prove” (Bateson, 5, p.36). Indeed, for him, science can assert only to be entitled to be a method of perception limited in its capacity to collect the external and visible signs of what could constitute the truth.


All the subjectivity of our experience is what is proposed here. Just like our personal knowledge, the collective knowledge rests on a perception oriented according to finalities. But those of the ordinary “oblige” our sensibility to “seeing correctly” what it is necessary to see or not to see in order to live in society according to the rules that this society enacts.

Any experience is subjective…our brain creates the images that we think of perceiving. (...) The experience of the outside world is only possible except by our particular sensors and by nervous pathways. To this degree, the objects are my creation, and the experience that I have of them is subjective, not objective (boldfaced by us).  (Bateson, 5, p. 37)


The analysis of the Rorschach protocols puts the finger for the diagnosis of psychotic troubles on the quite relative notion of reality. The teaching of this “reality” to the future psychologists rests on some concepts of which we will form here state according to one of our professors of psychology in the University of Liege, Chairperson Mormont, in an article entitled: “Rigueur et mise en doute de la perception dans le diagnostic de psychose au Rorschach”  [Rigor and Setting into Doubt of Perception in the Diagnosis of Psychosis in the Rorschach]. (Mormont, 22). On the first page, we can read:

It is that we know only what our sensory and conceptual systems allow us to integrate; we are thus in the impossibility of seizing and of even guessing the share of reality that escapes these systems. And consequently, to verify our perception up to the degree that gives justice to reality that, for us, can be only virtual and unknowable in its totality and its “truth.” In fact, what we call reality is our share of the world that we apprehend by our senses.


Thus usually, the analysis of the psychotic processes rests on data that are: 1 - precision of the quality of perception (F+%), 2 - the conformist aspect of this perception (A%) and 3 - to be in agreement with the collective thought (Ban%). But even with these criteria, there remain remote regions because always according to Mormont (22, p. 9):

Empirically, one observes that often the psychologists dismiss the hypothesis of psychosis if these variables (“adaptive triad”) reach satisfactory values. However, certain psychotics (in particular the delirious that are not dissociated), preserve a rigorous perception of reality associated with putting in doubt this perception. In this case, the adaptive triad can be excellent whereas the individual is openly psychotic.


To preserve a perception of reality rigorously associated with a putting in doubt of this perception is a frequent process in creators according to their own statements. If, with Chairperson Mormont, we pay attention not to too quickly label certain persons in one way or another, it is undeniable that a creator faced with this kind of evaluation is a “particular case” that calls for prudence in the analysis.


It is here that we invite the psychologist to remember that it is possible to function as a “psychotic,” as a “pervert,” as a “depressive,” and as a “narcissist” without structuring itself as such. There would be “times” and “situations” to which the creator subjects himself for his own pursuit. Obviously, the creator can “go off the rails” but all do not do so.


We will finish here with the thought of Gaston Bachelard (4, p. 10).

For all, it is necessary to become aware of the fact that the new experience said no to the old experience, without that, obviously, it is not a question of a new experience. But this no is never final for a spirit that knows logically to discuss his principles, to constitute in himself the new kinds of evidence, to enrich its corpus of explanation without giving any privilege to what would be a corpus of natural explanation suitable to explain everything.


Let us return to Bateson because he highlights what, in perception, is perception. It is the perception of a difference, an intangible concept but however quite present at every moment of our life.

Of all the examples, the simplest but the most profound is the fact that one needs at least two things to create a difference. In order to create the “awareness” of the difference, i.e. information, one needs two entities (real or imaginary) such as the difference that exists between them can belong by rights to their mutual relation. (Bateson, 5, p. 74)


A spirit, according to Bateson, is a collection of parts, or components, in interaction. The interaction between the parts of a spirit is brought about by a difference, and the difference is a nonmaterial phenomenon, to which one cannot assign a place in space or time: “the difference is to be brought closer to the negation of entropy and the entropy* more than of energy. ” (Bateson, 5, p. 98) [*entropy = measure of the unpredictability of energy]


Thus, that which does not change is unperceivable unless we decide to be changed by relationship to it.

The difference, being of the same nature as the relation, is situated outside of time or of space. One says that the white mark is “there,” “in the middle of the blackboard,” but the difference between the mark and the blackboard is not “there.” It is not in the mark; it is not in the blackboard; it is not either in the space ranging between the blackboard and the chalk. (Bateson, 5, p. 105)


Obviously, a context where there is no perceptible difference between two stimuli is not a context allowing a discrimination.


In any object, there exists an infinite number of differences. Of this infinity of differences, we select a very limited number of differences that become information. In fact, that which we indicate by information -- the basic unit of information -- is a difference that creates a difference. A perceived difference constitutes information because a black spot on a white sheet raises a difference that will create a difference on my retina and then in my brain. Thus, this difference will constitute an information. The difference is an abstraction; it is contained neither in the sheet nor in the black spot. It is the relation between the two.


Without a difference and without a distinction, there is no possible relation. Even in the cases of the relation between a human being and himself or herself, one distinguishes then the entities that communicate among themselves. Part of the individual is made a spectator of the totality of the individual of which he is a participant.


It is the difference that permits the distancing between two things, two objects, two ideas.

8. Sensibility and the Work of the Senses

If we take the functional definition of the senses, we conceive the senses as channels of related information that inform us about our internal state and the environment. Each sense is regulated on a basic level and the variations related to this level indicate the value of received information to us. There is thus a sensory reference that is to some extent a “zero,” a thermostat. Indeed, since the sensibility is perceptive, we recall that, according to G. Bateson, perception is only possible with the condition that it is discriminating, i.e. it is based on a perceptive difference. It is here that the sensory reference plays its part.


There are consequently classically the five senses that relates to the body. But by analogy, mood (joy, anxiety, anger), the sense of the other and oneself, the sense of time, the sense of space, the sense of the specularity and in another the sense of continuity are all of the processes comparable to the functional definition of the senses. We could continue with the “sense of honor” that indicates to us if our conduct is in the traditional, in the image of oneself where if the image deviates from it; that which is in oneself a related information that informs us about our representations compared to a reference.

Meanings of Specularity*

[*Specularity: related to a mirror and its reflection]


But let us return more particularly to the meaning of specularity. The “specular” term returns us to the mirror but we would say more simply than that that it returns us to something supposed to give us a representation of oneselves. When we look at ourselves in a mirror, the mirror returns to us our image. We seize this image and we make use of it to guide us and to evaluate what we are outside given that the image is an exact reflection of our external appearance.


If the sense of the specularity is correctly a sense, it must be necessarily regulated perceptively by relation to a reference. The sense of the specularity is an analogy of the mirror applied to the realm of our internal, mental, and representational perceptions.


If we speak of a specular relation to the Other, that would mean that the reference is the Other. We are, in this case, in a participative relation (p -).


On the other hand, a specular relation with oneself would mean that the reference is to oneself, i.e. our project of being. We are, in this case, in an inverse relation to that of participation; this is the individualizing position of p +.


What we highlight in this matter on the specular relation is the primacy of one’s view [regard] or the view of the Other as a perceptive reference to a representation of oneself. Being understood that what we call the view of the Other or oneself constitutes this image in this mirror where we look at ourselves internally to situate ourselves.


In fact, it is the bond in the origin that maintains the specular relation: “I look at myself in the glass and I know that it is me because when I move, the image in the glass moves. It is thus my will that arranges this image. This image is me in the sense where the I that looks at me is exactly the origin of this image. Therefore, as a beginning, this image belongs to me since a change in the origin (to blink my eyes) is reflected automatically in the image.”


Pierre Legendre is more explicit in this respect:

The essence here is to discern that the function of the mirror…returns to the problem of the relation to causality. Thus, the opening of the narcissistic problem to the problem of the thought is revealed. I will say: if that, “this shade of the image, sends back to your looking” according to the Ovidian formula, is the image of oneself because that is recognized as a different self, such a proposal includes that the subject entered into its own division, i.e. it exists there as a caused subject (underlined by us). (Legendre, 16, p. 80)


From the start, the function of the mirror is announced as a “schizophrenic” function but in the higher sense of the term, i.e. which institutes a relation with oneself, a relation of the relation: the ego function. Let us listen to a continuation of the above:

One can conceive that, under this relation, the mirror can be for the person the causes of the self. (...) The reflexivity is the only possible return of the looking on oneself, the obliged way of the looking that sees itself: the reflexivity orchestrates the dialectical schema of the causation of the subject. (...) Of the kind, the relation of identity, by the stage of the metaphor of the mirror, introduced the person to causality as external to the subject. (Legendre, 16, p. 81)


And Legendre states that the subject “is caused” starting from the image that makes a return to him or her.


It is, we think, the heart of the creation that gives insight by means of this specular relation with an other of oneself that gives us our “existential causality.” Indeed, since the bond of origin connects the image to its source, the creator reads in his creation that it comes from him. His creation would act as a mirror that gives an image to him of what he has become while creating. That would make it possible to a human being to be created through the images that he creates.

9. Sedimentation

There is art only if the word is laid out and formed in a deposit in a representation, a form that the matter seizes. (Mathieu, 3, p. 162)


This sensory material selected by our k + “forms a deposit” in thoughts that are strictly personal for us (in agreement with our project of being: p+) because they are constituted by our own sensory history. Each one has one’s sensory mode of apprehension and each person sees events whose results gradually mark an eminently personal trajectory. It is that which we call a sensory history.


The capture of the senses and the thoughts results in repeating an “imprint” that is engraved a little more each day in our mental realm; it acquires a weight and an importance in our eyes. One turns to it when one looks in the direction of one’s own being. “What the mouth is accustomed to say, the heart is accustomed to believe it” as Baudelaire states it. Therefore, sedimentation implies a temporal recurrence; it acts to maintain something.


This sedimentation maintains the perceptive and conceptual elements to which we adhere. It is an injection of a material in our image of oneself. This process stresses the great availability for oneself that it is necessary to have.

2. Quarter k + p + 

1. Relation with Oneself

We speak about an autocentric relation in k+ p+. It is interesting to note with Jean Mélon in his Doctorate thesis that:

The interpretation of Rorschach, which sees in the banal answers the sign of the “participation in the manner of conceiving of the community,” has never been disputed. The more a subject is a conformist, the more Ban% has the tendency to rise; the more it is original, or autistic, the more the Ban% is low. (...) Ban% is highest (>30%) when the functions of negation (k-) and participation (p-) are coupled. The Ban%  is lowest in the group (Sch) ++. (...) The percentage of the Ban confirms the adaptive character of (Sch) - - and, on the other hand, the hyper-originality connected to (Sch) + +. (Mélon, 19, p. 77)


The relation to oneself is an engine of powerful development thanks to the detachment of the relationship to others and the strength of one’s look on that of the others. But the narcissistic relation can become an absolute relation in the sense where the Other is excluded as a specular reference in one’s relation to oneself. There is nothing any more but oneself and oneself: it is in this sense where that becomes absolute. Because if in oneself, there is no more the negation of oneself, the system can get carried away.

The Absolute Aspect of the Narcissistic Relation


The absolute aspect of the narcissistic relation prevents the access to what is not registered in this relation, i.e. the Other. In this sense, narcissism is an obstacle to self-knowledge that is basically relative. Perception is based on the perception of a difference. From this perception is born knowledge. If its own perception is enclosed in an absolute relation with oneself, it is not very probable that the perception can capture what would be different from oneself, i.e., to some extent, that could call in question this self. Perception would capture only what the individual wants to see to maintain his or her absolute relation with himself or herself.

The Relative Aspect of the Narcissistic Relation


A person postulates a relation with oneself in the sense where, for example, we anticipate ourselves with ourselves a personal project that we are alone to carry out. The relative aspect would result owing to the fact that this individual is conscious that he will have difficulties and perhaps that other persons who judged this project negatively are not wrong….


It is this amalgam of doubt and personal convictions that maintains the relation with the Other. Their view [regard] is put between parentheses but it remains a delicate pattern in the background. Sometimes, the subject will dash towards his personal belief in his or her choice and will decrease the influence of the judgment of the others; and at other times, he will doubt so much that it will take two hands to stop his project.


But, to advance in his creative project, he will have to fit it continuously in a relation with himself. Within this relation, he or she will waver between two poles: that of the Other apart from the project and that, omnipotent, of an absolute relation to himself or herself. It is a good balance between these two poles when the subject can be confined to a project without losing the relation with the Other. On the other hand, excesses will push him towards impotence in relation to his project when it is located too much in the viewpoint [le regard] of the Other; maybe towards the entry of the mechanisms more psychotic if he evacuates the viewpoint of the Other.


Thus, it is truly the positioning of the individual compared to his own negation or more precisely compared to introjection of what can deny him what is essential to situate him when he enters a specular relation to his powerful self.


The creator as long as he does not completely invest his ego in its production, as long as he makes creation second to more human aspects, and as long as he counts creation as a means -- he is ensured to remain in a specular relation with himself that maintains the distance between the imaginary and the reality through the symbolic system that holds the place of a guardrail. If this relation is fulfilled, he endorses his creation instead of his being and blocks any process of revival and of distance in relation to his own productions.

2. The Creative Fiction Is a Differentiating Fiction

The majority of people invest a relation with somebody and live out a desire for fusion with this Other in reality. For the creator, it seems that, rightly, his ego feels itself in danger faced with an intense fusional pressure. That is deduced by reversing the general direction of the creative process. If we know towards what this one tends, we know at the same time what it moves away from.


Thus, the more creation is indispensable to the creator, the more there is a danger not to move away from it towards what the creative process moves away from. This conception of creation rests on a vision of it as a possible mechanism of defense. It is in the disproportion of the process that is born the intuition of the observer that consequently suspects the not innocent nature of the process.


That is all the more obvious as there exist creators who cannot tear themselves away with their creative process to that which he clings at all costs to a life buoy.  The question that jumps at one then is: Are they afraid of something by releasing creation? And then, in the affirmative: of what are they afraid?


Consequently, in order to know more, we question the creative process itself and while turning around its direction in the exactly the opposite meaning, we have the possibility of comprehending from where or from what it moves away from.


· The first thing that we will see is the Other (“popular masses”), the common run (and the leveling and the lack of differentiation of oneself in the mass), the collective (>< solitary creator).


· The second is a fusion with the Other, the participation with it without any distancing.


· The third thing is reality.


Why vigorously move away from these three elements in the name of an omnipotent and imaginary I? It is that this I is in danger. More precisely, the ego of the creator is in danger.


In danger of what? Danger of drowning oneself in fusion with the Other in reality. More precisely, the limits of the ego are so permeable that it is likely to disappear in the participation with the Other.


We would say that, in the creators, their ego tends with them naturally towards openness. Thus, one of the principal activities of their ego would consist in fighting against this basic tendency to open their ego. That could explain their great capacity to enter into resonance with people. Their great empathic capacity would result from this basic permeability of their ego. Thus, the creators conceal a very great sensitivity that is often at this point excessive so that they lose themselves in the sensory flood that inundates them.


By doing this, the limits of their ego would arrive at being so “porous” and so permeable with the Other that the distinction between oneself and the Other would become very difficult.


A real effort at paying attention is then necessary to make a dam for this sensory flow in order to channel it. Putting into form their sensibility is often a necessity to preserve this excessive sensitivity. This putting into form would correspond to a systole of ego with a specific use: this is the function of the factor  k +.


From there to use this potential for other things, there is only one step that they briskly cross while creating.


It is important to moderate the permeability of the ego. The ego can be plastic*, i.e. there can yield the place to the other while remaining itself. And, in the extreme, the ego can become porous and, in this case, the creation becomes a defense against a psychotic mechanism. [*plastic = easily molded or shaped; easily influenced; impressionable]


Thus, to move away from reality would make it possible for the ego to keep its borders. The creative process gives the exchange to the desire of fusion while allowing it to live itself through the imagination. Still it is necessary to create a self that can be taken for this Other. Once the actors are established on the imaginary created scene, the great fusion can begin. It is in this sense that the p + can “be taken” for a p - and that one sees appearing in the test the people with p - who are registered under the benevolence of a p + sitting enthroned above the scene.


Thus, the creative process would allow a satisfaction of a desire for fusion without putting the ego in danger since the place of this lack of differentiation is imaginary. An imagination held tightly by a p + that orchestrates the setting of the scene of fusion. The I thinking of p + would have sufficient distance not to be “fooled” by its own fiction that is played on the imaginary scene of creation. The implicit influence of p + in creation is placed hierarchically above this imaginary fusion because it is from its intention that is born this creative fiction because creation is above all a fiction.


We think that the creative intention is in p + and not in p -. Situated in p -, creation would not have a director within the meaning of an external I that thinks up the course of the creative fiction. And p+ is the most developed position at the level of the ego.


Since creation is a fiction, we are able to state that one of the elements of this fiction consists correctly with the fact that the p + permits itself to be p - from time to time.

3. The Search for a Lack of Differentiation

Hate allows a differentiation because it is producing an altérité [otherness]. It allows its own space that can become a place of creation. But the creative process paradoxically seems to nourish the desire for returning to the origins, a desire for a lack of differentiation.


There is a paradox because it distances one from others in reality in order to create and, at the same time, it tends towards the lack of differentiation and toward the Other in one’s imaginary. This paradox can be raised by adjusting the reality and imaginary plans.


If the creator is somebody who has a strong desire of fusion, the lack of differentiation, he seems to figure out the threat with this desire. He wants, on the one hand, to satisfy this desire there and, on the other hand, there is a whole psychic mechanism that tends to preserve the integrity of ego faced with this tension towards the lack of differentiation.


The idea would be that, in creation, he can live out what he cannot live out in reality otherwise he really loses himself. In imagination, that remains imaginary and fusion with the Other preserves his ego that does not risk anything since all that is imaginary.

4. The Essence: the Total Choice

In k+ p +, the creator would draw from his essence his potentiality to be in order to resituate himself or herself in the pure movement of the absolute choice. This potentiality to be, registered in each one of us, would consist with to be everything and to have everything in potentiality because no effective choice would be made. The imaginary has this property virtually to allow choices that are not each time at each moment renewed. “L’homme, ce voyageur disponible [Man, This Available Traveler] .” (Beaujon, 7, p. 192)


The absolute choice is the possibility of choosing everything without choosing anything.


Not to choose is to have the possibility of choosing everything; it is total freedom. Freedom because it is not attached; total insofar as one would not choose anything specific, that is to say everything. This is a movement of thought that tends towards the lack of differentiation.


We can speak about the opposition between to be [l’être] and being [l’étant]. Being is what, from to be, appears on the level of the phenomena. It is what we can perceive from to be. The being itself escapes us, to be is with the principle of being but one never has a good grasp of it in phenomenon and, thus, one can only know that which is of the order of being.


In the viewpoint by what preceded, to be [l’être] presents itself as the negation of being [l’étant] that is sensitive, i.e. accessible to the senses. To be is a “movement of an occurrence tended towards something.” Being has this property to be accessible to the senses, i.e. to fall under a reality that confines it and that removes from it this “dimension of potentiality.” In the same way, conversely, being would be the negation of to be.


· To choose an existence is to plunge in being [l’étant] -- something that is maintained and is accessible to the senses. This is to deny the possibility of all the other possibilities of existence, i.e. the choice allowed all positions. Being would seem here to be a process of differentiation.


· To choose the choice for everything is not to exist in such or such other direction. This is to be at a crossroad of paths without deciding for one or for the other. To be [l’être] would seem here to be a process of the lack of differentiation.


To create would be to plunge one’s self in one’s essence. This would be to some extent a reminiscence of our being [être], to remember that one has a movement to be [être] transcendent, continuously to happen beyond any choice. This would be to remember that we can escape all constraints some of which are by releasing us from our choices of existence. To remember this freedom registered in each one of us, that is the omniscience of the absolute choice.


The creator would tend towards to be [l’être] while letting himself move towards the deconstruction* of his choices of existence. He will let come what may come; he would let go and would not register the free movement of his thought in reality; he would not choose as much as he has not decided on it. The only limit that he would set is to limit the limitation. He turns around the process of limitation against itself. He short-circuits the brakes of thought that, consequently, carries it away to not finishing. [*Deconstruction involves the close reading of texts in order to demonstrate that, rather than being a unified whole, any given text has irreconcilably contradictory meanings.]



After to be [être] goes in its essence to detach itself from its existence, it would make a return to its existence by posing certain choices that would be maintained at all cost. This return could be done only by the negation of its to be [être] potential and of this potentiality to be [être] everything. The choice that the creators would have made would consequently be actualized as new data resulting from their return to the sources of their existence. k- and p- move towards a process of limitation and of differentiation.


In the final analysis, the choice would rest on the desire to give body to his choices. That would stipulate the space-time inscription of his choices that would defer to the creator the decision that he took to choose something.


Therefore, to choose and to be held to it (a kind of capture) would logically make us leave the infinite fields of the potentiality to be [l’être]. “Main-tenir ” [“Main-tenir“ = literally: to hold (tenir) in one’s hand (Main): to maintain] one’s choice is to repeat the same choice. This is to give him initially a temporal body in the sense where the result of this choice and the object of the choice is recurring.


Then, to register this body in space by giving it forms, colors, and words is to give to the carried out choice a sensual body, i.e. that can be harnessed by the senses.


The conjunction of the effect of time and the effect of space makes this choice real. It takes part with space-time reality and, so it tends to exist. To some extent, it also tends towards the irreversible. Therefore, the space-time inscription in the procedure of the choice puts aside the potentiality (which could lead back this choice towards the imagination and cause its disintegration in the movement to be [l’être] by the lack of differentiation) by giving a body to the work.


With the inverse -- with remaining too long in creation -- one risks remaining in a total lack of differentiation.


The creative journey would make it possible to control the impact of the lack of differentiation and to live that in his imagination. That avoids him from wanting to live that in reality. The goal of the creative play then consists in preserving one’s ego from an intense sensibility to the desire of the Other in order not to drown there.


The creative process would make it possible in the imagination to drown in an Other that would be, in fact, a self created and taken for an Other. The principal characteristic of creation being to create something of the unknown thus inevitably different from the Other in reality. That would be equivalent, perhaps, very well to convince himself or herself that it is not a question of the Other that exists in reality. There is possibility of confusion between oneself and oneself in creation because one of his or her two selves is taken for the Other in order to satisfy the desire for fusion and a lack of differentiation.


The self taken for the Other should consequently have sufficient distance in relation to the genuine, alive Other in reality and it is in this sense that the creative act should create something of the new, something of the different, and something of the imaginary l’altérité [otherness] for which there cannot be confusion between the self-other and the real Other. The new character of creation would prevent this possible confusion.


Once this self-other is set up, the self begins to enter into fusion with this self-other and fully satisfies in the imagination the desire for fusion. Afterwards, he or she has lived this fusion in his or her imagination, he or she should not seek as much this fusion in reality. The push for a lack of differentiation is calmed; he or she can find the Other in reality (the real other) without putting in danger his or her ego.


He always keeps his self-other in him for the situation where a fusional push has suddenly put the integrity of his ego in danger. This imaginary self-other would act as a protector of the limits of the ego when faced with the Other that in reality becomes too invasive. If there is danger of disintegration of the ego in reality through the relation with the Other, he can find in his imagination all its mechanism that satisfies the desire for fusion while remaining himself.


This matter would open a door for the explanation of the emergence of the psychotic process in the creators.


To create the new one in oneself, the Other of oneself would thus correspond to a psychic defense that consists in preventing any possible confusion between the imaginary Other created by oneself and the Other in reality with which fusion is dangerous.


The oppositional no can say no to the Other in spite of the force of the desire for fusion with this Other implicit in creation because this desire finds its full expression in the imagination.


At the exit from the creative process, a step towards differentiation in the relationship with the (real) Other will have been taken. To want to give birth to oneself by oneself would indicate the desire to be a different self and to exist for oneself. Conversely, that indicates the implicit primacy of the Other in the imagination of the creator and the omnipotence of the parental imagoes against which it is necessary to fight to exist: to reject them is to be in oneself one’s own creator.


Thus, the first stage would be of producing l’altérité by the hate as a defense against a desire for fusion in order to differentiate oneself in reality (the role of the detachment).


The second phase would consist in producing an imaginary self-other in the creative process not to be different without putting the ego in danger thanks to the maintenance of the specular relation.


The third stage would be, after the going beyond the desire for fusion operated in the imagination, the return towards the Other in reality within the framework of a healthy differentiation.

5. In What Way Is an Other a Creation?

Jean Mélon (18) underlines the fact that people very often consider that a work expresses something. In fact, it never expresses anything; it is itself itself. A work once it is realized is like a person; it is sufficient for itself. It does not represent anything.


The artist is a kind of medium from this viewpoint. The creator is a medium in the sense where the creation passes through him and he himself does not know for that matter how that is done. He lets himself become immersed; it is necessary to abandon himself in order to create; it is necessary to let come something that one does not know from where that it comes exactly.


A work is. Autonomous, released from its creator, it does not express anything except its existence.


The filiation between the creator and the work within the framework of the specular relation to oneself (in the precession of oneself) can allow the illusion of the sameness (relation of ipseity [individual, individuality]) between the creator and his creation. This illusion can make it possible to maintain an imaginary lack of differentiation between oneself and the other by means of the work. On the other hand, the strangeness of work and from its origin has this sufficient altérité “to incarnate” in imagination this Other that lives in reality.

6. Autopoièse

The quarter k + p + suggests a configuration of existence [l’être] according to a principle of self-emergence. The term that gives form to this configuration is “autopoièse” [self-creation]. We think that the quarter k + p + is an organization of  an autoplastic and autocentric self. It is the direction of the movements of the thought and the senses towards a virtual center of gravity located in oneself that poses the idea of an interpretation of this virtual center as a reference for oneself. This centripetal movement and this reference in oneself are what one cannot more significantly present than in the term “autopoièse” [self-creation]. It is in this sense that we hope that the clarity of this concept will make it possible to illustrate our subject.

The Chilean neurophilosophers Varela, Maturana and Uribe formed the term “autopoièse” with two Greek words: auto (oneself) and poesis (poetry, or creation). This suggests something that makes itself. (Segal, 27, p. 163)


Andrew (2, p. 359) defines autopoièse as “the capacity that alive systems have to develop and to maintain their own organization, the organization that is developed and maintained being identical to what achieves its development and its maintenance.” Varela (30, p. 13) described an autopoiétique [self-creative] machine as “a homeostatic system (or rather composed of stable relations) that has its own organization (defined as a network of relations) for fundamental invariability.”

The systems autopoiétiques [self-creative] are autonomous. They determine their own operations. If they do not do this, they disintegrate and die. A system is autonomous when it controls itself and defines for itself its own laws. (Segal, p. 164)


We think that it is in the quarter k + p + that this concept of autopoièse [self-creation] is carried to its acme.

3. Quarter k - p +

The reaction k - p + is a reaction of a sophist; it is also the reaction of the rational individual. But it is above all the reaction of a subject who defends his opinion.


The individual who functions in the myth is opposed to that which is positioned in the logos; they are irreducible enemies. Indeed, the sophist destroys myth and what counts is the subject who speaks his mind. That brings us to Descartes: I think, therefore I am (the only thing that I know is that I am a thinking thing). The position k - p + is a Cartesian position, i.e. a position of doubt or rather it is what succeeds the doubt. Descartes states: “I doubt everything,”; it is really that which does not believe any more in anything.


The one who is in the mythical position himself believes. k + p - absolutely needs to believe; in order to exist, he believes. If we adopt the opposite position, we adopt the Cartesian position: “I doubt, it is perhaps true, it is perhaps false; I decide that the only thing that I know is that I think therefore I am.”


p+ is “I think.” k - p + is the claim of its word of oneself against an imposed word (I believe in myself as a giver of an answer). p+ is a transcendental position: “I dominate the world.”


In a culture like ours, let us say logos (oratio, ratio, proportio [oratory, reason, and proper relation between parts]), this position is the ideal that is imposed on each person (Compare the obligation of the dissertation for the advanced student). One does not have a choice; one is practically obliged to function like that. If one does not do that, one is outside of the system; therefore, this is a constraint.


The position k - p + is the position that one meets most often in neurotics because it pertains to what one has tried to encompass: this ambition and, at the same time, this obligation to be oneself and to free oneself from something that would be this mythical universe of which we do not take part any more.


In the reaction k - p +, there is an inhibition, but what does it mean to inhibit? Hemmung (inhibition) is understood in the Freudian sense and in the metapsychologic* sense, i.e. to perceive the object in its external reality, it is necessary to inhibit the hallucinatory activity. However, the hallucinatory activity implies belief: “I believe, thus I hallucinate”. “If I believe, I will end up hallucinating (Compare: spiritualism, a trance).” [*metapsychologic: beyond the psychological]


The person who puts himself or herself in this position k - p + is inhibited in the sense where he or she refuses to be in this state of influence where the hallucinatory capacity is released. Hemmung is the refusal to enter the hallucinatory process, which explains why k - p + is the position of the individual of logos, i.e. the rational individual who bases his conduct on reason. k - is a realistic position.


According to Mélon, when one does a research task, one is all the time hallucinating. Then, one is obliged to do an anti-hallucinating work; if not, one lets oneself be carried away.


Creation is the fact that one lets oneself be carried away by something that is not of the order of p+. The root of creation is necessarily found in p- and thus in adhesion to what comes to us by the channel of intuition. That implies that one believes, that one lets oneself be infiltrated by an idea that can be absurd but to which one adheres to as little as it is. “I believe that,” it should be done. The one who is k - p + will not budge, he or she is too realistic, too scientific one could say, too much a checker, and too cautious to create. To create, it is necessary to be let oneself be carried away by no matter what.


Hemmung means also that it is fixed, blocked, stopped because it is very good at stopping the hallucination, otherwise one is autistic, but if one adopts the exactly opposite position that is to adhere only to what is absolutely sure and certain, one is not allowed to innovate. There is nothing to do with the above since a creative thought implies a paradox because to create, it is absolutely necessary to pass by that position since it is necessary to give up this position and, at the same time, to restore it. There is all the time a balancing that must take place.


In the population that seeks advice, k - p + is the most frequent. These are the ordinary neurotics who are the people who suffer from inhibition; they lack fantasies; one would readily say to them: “Let yourself go.” They are people who are perfectly integrated into the system; it is not false to say that they are the sick from civilization. In fact, they adhere so much to what is imposed on all of us, which is the Cartesian ideal, an ideal which is very castrating from that point of view, which does not allow any more any fantasies and which is the purist scientific ideal. The devastations of this ideal are immense because it is a true castration at the level of thought.


k - p + is the most widespread position among civilized people in our culture because they adhere to this ideology of the individual in the sense that it is necessary to become someone: “You must, it is necessary to go to school, to miss one year and the world collapses….” Even if it is true that it is a position of progress, it is paradoxically very inhibiting because it imposes an ideal that is in the final analysis unreachable.


The ambition is p+ and the means is the verification, k-. From time to time, one is k+ also; one lets oneself go. p+, “to be everything,” is what characterizes the ideal of our culture, i.e. to be sufficient for oneself, independent, autonomous. It is a paradox because, how still to form a community when the ideology pushes individuation to the maximum?


On the other hand, attachment is a force that it is necessary to take into account as a human because it forms an integral part of our beginning and of our source.


Thus the entry in the quarter p + k - supposes in the creator the capacity to deny his creative course as a defense in order to open in himself a space available for a very real Other. The presence of the Other in his real life, the place that it gives him is largely dependant on his capacity to withdraw from his personal psychic economy the libido that he will concede to the Other. To give to the Other, it will be necessary for him to deduct from his capital of narcissistic libido.


All that is possible with the condition that his defenses allow to him to do it, i.e. his ego does not feel any more in danger in a relation with the Other. The condition of clinging to the Other rests thus on unhooking of oneself and of his creation.


The quarter k - p +, stage of the (neurotic) negation of omnipotence, is the anteroom of the quarter k - p -, which is the time of the cycle the most in agreement with the Other.

1. How to Go Beyond the Desire for Omnipotence?

According to Jean Mélon (18):

A profile of a creator in the phase of creation resembles enough a profile of a psychotic that there is hardly any difference between the creators and the psychotics; it is known that there are many great creators who became psychotics. the border between the two can be very thin. In all truth, artists say firstly that they cannot be prevented from creating and secondly that it is a permanent grief. It is nevertheless not funny. If one does not create any more, that is alarming; therefore, all that is close to a psychosis. The psychotic is either in his delirium or he is nothing at all.


Not to enter a dead end is to maintain in oneself the possibility of being able to go beyond oneself, i.e. to be able to deny the choices that one made in greatest confidence. To enter a dead end is to block the going beyond and is to be fixed with a choice that excludes other choices. It is to have a total relationship to one’s choice to the point of no more being able to reject it. It is vital to being able to be turned back to oneself.


If we pose the possibility of a negation of oneself (k-) with reference to a related connection to oneself and its absence for an absolute relation to oneself, we must question the nature of this negation of oneself within the framework of creation.

Analysis of G. Bonnet on Narcissism

We had on an occasion during the Szondi conference in 1994 at Leuven to listen to Gerard Bonnet on the subject of narcissism. We will recount his thought. We are in possession of transcribed notes from a recorder of this conference. My dissertation guide, Jean Mélon, also present at this conference, also possessed a specimen of these notes. We could not thus refer to any bibliography concerning this conference since, for the moment, it is unpublished. We hope that Szondi Archives of Louvain-La-Neuve will soon publish the proceedings of this conference.


Narcissism would be the height of sexuality since it is a search in oneself of the sex object that one initially goes to seek in the Other. This firm nucleus is always present in the heart of narcissism. There is narcissism through the return of the libido to one’s own sex, even if this libido irradiates then in the whole body.

Because it is really of the legend that states that Narcissus would have fallen in love with his own image to the point of sinking into his own contemplation. (...) It is to be in love with his own sex that requires one to say, a sex that he prefers to that of the Echo nymph who has made signs of love to him and who does not obtain the favors that she hopes for. Not that Narcissus is there completely indifferent to this pretty nymph; she pleases him; she awakens in him desire but he estimates that what she has to offer to him is not worth what he has already. The more that he finds it in him in a manner much more reassuring and satisfying. (Bonnet, p. 31)


Narcissus died in his contemplation. This is nevertheless the true problem that is posed in this history. However, if the unconscious is unaware of death, it is not unaware of disappearing. The anxiety of castration is the fear that our sexual organ disappears, and, if one is afraid at this point, it is because this possibility of its disappearance is anchored very deeply in the unconscious.

But, it is very well that is the subject in the history of Narcissus. This is the young man who disappears, he dissolves literally in the pond where he contemplates his image. And it is truly destiny that it is necessary for us today to reintroduce into the heart of psychoanalysis in order to operate the second dismantling. (Bonnet, p. 31)

A. The Disappearance and the Cult of the Phallus

Why this disappearance? To answer, it is rightly necessary to go beyond the legend in order to rejoin it to the true myth. Bonnet relies upon the book of Pascal Tignard, which is entitled Le sexe et l'effroi [Sex and Fear] where he has analyzed in a rather traditional way the history of Narcissus.


A hunter is dumbfounded [médusé] by a look [regard] of which he is unaware that it is his. He perceives it on the surface of a brook in the forest. He falls into the reflection that fascinates him and is killed by the frontal look. And according to Tignard, the ancients are positive that it is not the love that he has for his double that kills him but it is the look. According to this theory, Narcissus would have died executed by a look, his look. In other words, the error that he made is not to be absorbing himself in the contemplation of his image; it would be rather the fact that he was exposed to the look carried by this image and by this sex. It is this look that comes to strike him in full force.


One can ask what made this look to have been so dangerous?


Pascal Tignard, in relying on the texts of antiquity, provides the first explanation. That is due to the very nature of this look that is a sexual look, that which he calls the look of fascination, the look intended for the sex. This is thus a look that freezes, which sets and which establishes and which only can, in fact, fill in and divert.

In antiquity, the exhibition of the phallus was judicious to exorcize this look in order to alleviate it. The old cults relied on for centuries to fix this look by the exhibition of the phallus under all their forms to divert the misdeeds of them that are in the villages, in the fascistic cults and in the mystery cults. It was a question of displaying the phallus in one way or another, so as to keep the members in the shelter of the values carried by the look made to return on them. (Bonnet, p. 32)


According to this conception, the look would be humiliated owing to the fact that it is diverted from its natural object that is the sex itself.


Unconsciously, we pay homage to God Phallus in the sense of homosexuality; we pay, at the same time, homage to our own phallus so as to resist all the threatening looks as we feel are formed on us. It is finally the equivalent of a ritualized sexuality and codified for internal use.


According to Tignard, finally, if Narcissus died, it is especially because he had the gall to look opposite this look. That is to say that he wanted to scan this look and to pierce its meaning. And, it is based besides on the passage of Ovid that states: “Why did I see something? Why do I made my eyes guilty?”.


Therefore, Narcissus is punished for having dared to look in face of the look on the sex and what it means.

The analysis leads us to think that we can be maintained in existence only insofar as we render to the phallus the worship that is appropriate to it and in the form that is appropriate for us through our symptoms. In the same way, that brings us also to believe that with each time a misfortune or a difficulty happens to us and, indeed, it is because we refused to subject ourselves blindly to it. From where resistances and from where this kind of palpitations of the symptom. I found a phallus, and it will not annoy me to find what that wants to say. It is to look at the look. Therefore, it is a kind of way of saying: “Do not seek to know the look that is opposite” and one returns to something rather traditional and that is the fault of Adam and Eve, who wanted to pierce the secrecy of the Tree of Life. One touches there, I would say to the sources for the submission to the leader, the star, the scientist, and the psychoanalyst; with all these people who make mysteries and to whom we must simply return a worship in order to ensure our simple survival. (Bonnet, p. 32)

B. Nemesis and the Punishment of Narcissus

It is the narcissism as such that is a trap. In the myth such as we derive it from Ovid and the disastrous fate that is played with Narcissus, with his imprudence, is not the fruit of chance, his imprudence or even a whim.


Narcissus was a good hunter, he is more accustomed to set traps than to let himself be caught by them. If he lets himself be caught, it is because he was made for that, i.e.:

This trap is a drive and it is a retaliatory measure and not just for anybody, since we state that the story is the fate of Nemesis in person. Nemesis is the goddess of revenge, of the cold, terrible revenge for which there is no possible reply. Narcissus is carefree and a very fine young man, and suddenly here it is that the nymphs fall in love with him and, in particular, the Echo nymph. He repulses her and will let her die as she will become anorexic. Thus what happened to Narcissus, I would say his narcissism, and indeed, it is presented as an action of revenge. That is to say Echo and the nymphs called to Nemesis and Nemesis says that will not occur like that, and poor Narcissus, he can be nothing there and he is made a flower in an instance. (Bonnet, p. 33)


That wants to say that, well beyond the problem of the look, the looking on the sex that is never only a bait and elements of the trap, and indeed, the true problem of narcissistic love is that this love for our own sex has a price and a compensation.

From the time when I seek in myself what I would find in the other, and, indeed, I make disappear this other, I reduce the other to nothing. More exactly, he throws back into the darkness the living and dynamic relation that was awakened at the beginning. (Bonnet, p. 33)

C. The Evil Eye or Shock in the Recoil

All the drama of Narcissus and even of Narcissus in the analytical sense is that at any moment he risks the return to him of disappearing and of the desire for the disappearance that he inflicted on the Other. And all the maneuvers that are evoked up to now in the worship of the phallus, looking at the looking [regard sur le regard], are finally only attempts to delay this payment.

You know the famous phrase of Freud: “The shadow of the object hovers over me.” It is in connection with the destiny of the melancholic person that is the most terrible of manifestations, and, indeed, I would say rather than the shadow of the relation to this object hovers over us all. And this shadow of a relation is indelible in that it is that which woke up us with love and that at any moment, it can sweep down on us and destroy us. (Bonnet, p. 33)


There is no pleasure for anyone insofar as we will find in oneself an equivalent not of the sex of the Other, but of the pleasure which we initially experienced with the Other. That is to find in us what the Other gave birth in us and that we appropriate to ourselves.

From the time when I make it mine, and indeed, there occurs something that is indeed like a kind of putting to death and a rejection of the initial relation. This is essential but, as of the moment when the subject is in a phase to find and to want to profit, I would say that what was set up in the first relation, then suddenly there happens the repercussions of the act by which he is separated from his first relation; in other words, Nemesis takes part by threatening him of the fate that he has made the other to undergo. Here, in my sense, that means that any narcissism is also a drama of narcissism. (Bonnet, p. 34)

D. Realism of the Unconscious and the Disappearance

The nymph Echo remains where she is; she is repulsed. Bonnet compares this process to repression.

What does the word repression mean? At that time, repression is formulated in term of Aufhebung, to abolish, to remove. In other words, repression is something that means not simply the act to imitate but “Go! Out of here! Disappear!”. In this case, the term repression is to be taken literally. A little like the small children who cry when their mom leaves them but also one often hears these small children say: “Go mom, go away!” with an extraordinary self-confidence, go somewhere else, I want to amuse myself with my buddies or to be all alone. (Bonnet, p. 34)


This is experienced by all children, in the unconscious, in the strongest sense of the term; it is a terrible realism. That is equivalent to the murder of the thing and in the unconscious, it is experienced like a set and irreversible act.


Poussin has devoted a picture that represents Narcissus and the nymph Echo and, in the center of the picture, there is a young boy representing a person who holds a torch. It is the torch that will light the pyre that will reduce Narcissus to ashes.

It is extraordinary because, in the texts of Ovid, there is made allusion in two words to pyre and that, in fact, the pyre is not used since Narcissus instead will go into the water that is the opposite of fire. Basically, Poussin understood very well that the drama of Narcissus is this confrontation with self-destruction and with “You will disappear, you will be reduced to ashes.” (Bonnet, p. 34)


In the myth, this boomerang effect is presented in such terms that is inescapable. Why inescapable? This is because there is an effect of structure. In other words, if the desire for libido autonomy is made to return with this violence, it is also because it is found on the side of these primary relations of the things that seriously posed problems. They are these things that the adults injected into the relation without realizing it and that the subject finds in the relation of today at certain times.

E. History of Leonardo de Vinci

Leonardo was born from the union of a certain Pierre and his mistress from that time who was called Catherina. Shortly after this affair, about a year, Pierre decides to settle down and to marry. He thus marries another woman who is called Aguéra; she is eight years younger than Catherina.


Therefore, he marries a new woman younger than his mistress and, at the same time, he takes along Leonardo to his new hearth when Leonardo was between 1 year and 18 months. As Pierre is a notary and that it is a man who follows custom, he did not drop his mistress Catherina; he had her marry someone else. On the other hand, he does not take the trouble, very curiously, to recognize Leonardo, who remained all his life a bastard. Thus, Leonardo is to have two successive mothers and a father whom one could call natural and a provider.


In the large pictures of his maturity, with the Virgin and Saint Anne, there are always women, and women who ought to have normally, like the mother and the daughter, a difference in age but who have very little difference in age.


Therefore, the first thing that appears astonishing, a young woman who represents the love of the beginnings, and then, the very little older woman, often associated with Jean Baptist, or an object that symbolizes a difficult and distressing destiny. One can thus think that it is not without relationship with his first relations.


Bonnet advances that the picture represents the mirror on which are reflected the Narcissus who is Leonardo. But there should be there what threatens him and that looks at him since always and that could kill him if he does not take guard there.


What threatens him is not the look as such but what has happened in his primary relations. Therefore, here is how he tries to be released from this by putting that in the images and separating himself from all the looks that threaten in order to exorcize them in certain a way and to use them to his own profit.


Leonardo developed his great production at a crucial moment of his life. He was with the service of Ludovic More in Milan who had been vanquished at the time by the French legions. In fact, his patron, with whom he owed everything, disappeared a few years afterwards. He had to change his patron. He entered into the services of the king of France thereafter.

It is at the time when he passes from one patron to another that happened to him what had occurred when he passed from one mother to another. At the time when he looks at the past and happens to him a revival of this one. It is necessary that he then put in an image what had happened in the first relation that served him as a lightning conductor. (Bonnet, p. 35)


Therefore, according to Bonnet, the misunderstanding of the narcissistic mortifying situations comes rightly from the double origin of this threat. The subject interprets and it is inevitable, the violence of the threat that weighs on him like the inevitable counterpart of his desire for autonomy; in other words, as the return of the act by which he put an end unilaterally to the first relations. From where comes his culpability (Narcissistic and non-Oedipal).


But that would probably not be exteriorized there if nothing in his life today had come to make an “echo.”

F. The Recoil and the Narcissistic Apparatus

The destiny of Narcissus is not only one attempt of structure but also the resultant of a unique history under the original conditions that are specific to each one and that became really dangerous only as from the time when the history has made a return to him.


The question is: “What can we do rightly to try to give us a respite?”.

Then, I believe that it is possible there are two ways in order to look at and to limit the complaint. There is that of the way that the myth indicates to us and then there is the way that psychoanalysis indicates to us. Therefore, the first recommended thought is a kind of worship for the phallus and for the sex, and God knows if our civilization of today is completely on these inventions and that our culture is in the course of resuscitating these worships not only in our neuroses, but even on the public stage. And then, the analytical theory is not so foreign to the worship of the phallus but not in the sense that we analyze it. We will try to find a device to keep us from this evil eye and from this kind of repercussion from the things of the past. It is a question of some share of constituting an artificial apparatus in order to face these things that will fall to them from above and that for some would be unbearable. (Bonnet, p. 35)

G. The Shield of Perseus

The “analytical setting” would be, for Bonnet, the replay of the history of Narcissus. When one lies on the couch, we are like Narcissus; we make disappear Echo who is the analyst. That will be nothing any more but an echo. And then what occurs?

And indeed, obviously, I expect to receive reprisals because Nemesis is going to put them in there. Therefore, I put myself in the situation of Narcissus, I have mirrors and I tell about my life. (Bonnet, p. 37)


Only, the difference, we know that it is not truth; in other words, one does not speak about it. One speaks and one speaks about all that distressingly happens today in order to articulate it with all that that happened during the life of yesterday.


In other words, without realizing some of it, one replays, one makes a psychodrama, one replays the history of Narcissus with this difference that at the same time one is Perseus, i.e. one puts on a shield to reflect (the look of disappearing; Compare to “The myth of the Gorgon”). Finally, basically, the end of the analysis is the time when one interiorized the system, i.e. we are not any more at the mercy of the distressing look of the Other and that we understand and we know to make use of it in order to say: “Hold, light signal, there is something that makes a change in me, all is well.” We could also say to ourselves: “Be calm. We are not worked up.”

H. The Other, Love and Nothingness: a Waltz in Three Time

Narcissistic sexuality can be integrated and take place among the others only insofar as the subject can formulate through it a certain number of messages that he carries in him in the form of translations. When Narcissus turns towards the mirror of the other, he comes to realize, like all the suicides of the world, that he really could not love and that these questions could not be posed. Therefore he throws himself finally into the water in merging himself with the object of his desire. (Bonnet, p. 40)


The greatest paradox of this history is that any narcissistic expression that turns around is the remainder of a love letter that did not arrive at its destination.


It is often said that the children who were not sufficiently loved suffer thereafter from deprivations of all kinds. Let us not forget the children who could not love sufficiently, i.e. those who could not answer the echo that they believed to perceive coming from the origins of their life and that however enabled them to survive.

Of course, they try to understand what has happened but, when they do not find anything, they run up against the desire of disappearing that one day or the another they inflicted on the other and this desire there rebounds to them like a boomerang effect. I would say that, in all the cases, it is Echo who lies to them, it is Echo who calls to them, and it is Echo who kills them. (Bonnet, p. 40)

2. Effects on the Creative Process

2.1 The Disappearance of Oneself

The look of the disappearing [Le regard de la disparition] that the creator brings to the other persons leads him to a position that brings him closer to Narcissus. However, according to Bonnet, Narcissus is punished for having made disappear this Other by rejecting the advances from the nymph Echo. Nemesis intervenes then in plunging Narcissus into nothingness of his own disappearance, i.e. his death.


The analysis of Bonnet highlights the fact that this look of disappearance can be made to return. This is the “recoil.” To guard against this recoil, Bonnet cites the worship of the Phallus as a shield. He goes further in postulating that knowledge is a worship than one dedicates to a judicious omnipotence to protect us from this look of the disappearing that would return to us.


In this sense, the creator is in danger of seeing being turned onto him this look of disappearing and to have a presentiment of the effects of it by a self-destruction of his course. It is here that can be registered the negation of oneself. But, just as Perseus repulses the look of the Medusa with his shield, the creator can repulse the look of the disappearing that would be made to return on him while being protected with a shield. This shield would be his works and the worship of his works without which he would vanish.

2.2 The Limit to the Creative Process

In the ruin inherent in excess, the Greeks saw the action of Nemesis.

The excess inflicted on the nature of things causes energy able to bring back them to appropriate limits. The Greeks have called this energy Nemesis. (Beaujon, 7, p. 81)


Designating at the same time a divinity and a feeling, sometimes a proper name and sometimes a substantive, the word Nemesis (or némésis) is derived from a Greek word meaning to divide and to distribute. The feeling of the Nemesis is that which determines and appreciates without indulgence the sharing of things and, finding it badly done, rejects this distribution and calls for another. The spirit animated by the feeling of Nemesis understands that the order of the world is in question and that going beyond the limits will set in motion the force that will reduce the committed excess.

In all the areas where our activity is exerted, certain limits seem vital necessities, or regulating principles. If thus one gave the name of Nemesis to the collection of the forces that regulate and limit human enterprise and that is likely in the case where one would ignore the limits and be made to feel as a kind of recoil or devastating flow of energy backward, one would transpose into the current mode the exact significance that Nemesis took in the eyes of the Greeks. (Beaujon, 7, pp. 81-82)


To contain what must be contained: this is the complete problem of the limit. “To contain is not necessarily to repress or to restrict: it is to be included in a vaster reality.” (Beaujon, 7, p.17)


That calls for a dialectical process that could be described as a vision that covers the fields open to experience so as to discover the elements there by which they link, in their opposition even, the extremes of this field.

The word dialectical (dia, through) finds here the significance that the Greeks gave it: search of the truth by the opposition of points of view and the dialoguing persons the path of the distance between these points of view…. (Beaujon, 7, p. 160)


Thus, the limitation with the creative process rests on a threshold that consists in not going beyond an excess. This being understood as the preponderance of a force in relation to another, both being dependant upon their dialectical nature. What genuine excess would be threatened to the creator?

 But it happens that the image stops the vision and captures the intelligence, instead of promoting them. The image is disguised as an absolute and becomes an idol. The myths of the nation, the race, indefinite progress, and revolution prove their power by history. The myth (a developed metaphor) is a misleading discourse in the degree where, managing to turn the attention onto a certain image, the myth frees this image from its limitation and thus removes the capacity of it to be incorporated into a higher synthesis. (Beaujon, 7, p. 50)


The complete man appears as a crossing, a crossroads between two worlds, a node of relations. The most necessary act for him is most difficult: to realize his unity. He cannot be conceived without the multiplicity that is the extreme opposite. One and multiple: such is revealed to us with our own eyes. But it is the “images of oneself” that are so absolute that they do not suffer any comparison with others going so far as to deny their own negation. And in that, k + is the negation of its own possibility of negation, k-. A creator must circulate in these two positions if not his k + will carry it towards a form of absolute relation with himself that will then land him in the arms of Nemesis, in fact, a self-destruction located in k- and to the degree of the imprint of the k+.


It is truly a safety measure of being able “dialectically to divide his being” between the conviction of being able to be everything and that of being only a “finished nonentity” and “an error on two legs.”

From this plurality, the dialectical works out the organizing principle, the limit, suitable to unify what, from his single movement, would slide into the unlimited. (Beaujon, 7, p. 180)


One impoverishes reality to the exact degree where one removes oneself from one’s dialectical nature.

If man is a dialectical being, his normal state is the drama, i.e. the play of its interior plurality. There is no dialectical without drama. (p. 206, 7, Beaujon)


If we leave the desire of control of the creator on his internal world, arriving to an extreme, his encompassing vision must be able to transcend his desire for control. This vision must comprise the antithesis of oneself: a radical altérité [otherness]. In other words, to deny itself without abolishing and being integrated in something vaster than oneself. Concretely, the creator releases the pressure and enters a laissez-faire or let one act [laisser-agir] favorable to an introjecter that will allow a synthesis. Therefore, the desire for excessive control hems in the spirit in one facet by denying the other facet.


Thus, it seems that faced with the desire for omnipotence of a human being, nature answers by a desire of self-destruction that has its source in the same unconscious root. This would be a principle of balancing thanks to two antithetic forces that would lead the creator to succumb in a way to an emptiness that can become the way to an abyss. This one would be understood like a “signal”; a luminous indicator is ignited; it is time to rejoin the others. To exceed this course, there is no more balance and there is an excess and working against nature.


If nature has registered in the depths of us the relation with the Other within the center even of our body and of our beginning; we think that “our nature” cannot bear a process that tends to deny in an absolute manner this relation with the Other. It is, it seems to us, that we read this, above all, in the myth of Narcissus. The formula of this logic once amplified and carried to its height would become: “Any entrance of omnipotence calls for an entrance of self-destruction in a degree proportioned to the omnipotence”. “A system endowed from an autonomous capacity of ridiculing of the system” (Michaux, 21, p.117)

2.3 Attachment
2.3.1 Hypnosis - Love - Point of View of Freud

All the hypnotic processes have in common a capture of attention. It is a matter of tiring the attention by means of weak and regular sensory stimulations. Attention, in the broad sense, corresponds to the setting up an awakening of our senses. However, in hypnosis, we observe a harnessing by the hypnotist of these senses. Whereas the hypnotized behaves with respect to the outside world like a sleeper, i.e. diverted all its senses from it, he is awakened with respect to the person who plunged him into hypnosis and only hears and only sees him, and understands and answers him.


According to Freud, this phenomenon called hypnotic relation has characteristic consequences:

But there is not only this reduction, so to speak, to the world of the hypnotized with the hypnotist. In addition the fact that the first becomes completely docile with regard to the second, obeying and credulous, and that in a quasi-unlimited way in the case of deep hypnosis. (Freud, 13, p. 15)


Envisioned under the aspect of putting into sensory form, hypnosis clarifies in an obvious way the diverting of oneself from one’s own senses in a relation with the Other leading to a true transfer of representations:

The hypnotist says: “You see a snake, you smell the perfume of a rose, you hear the most beautiful music,” and the hypnotized sees, smells, and hears what is required of him by the suggested representation (...) He behaves completely as if that were real, manifests all the corresponding affects, and can if required give an account, after hypnosis, of his perceptions and his imaginary experiences. (Freud, 13, p. 16)


Thus, the harnessing of the sensibility of a person by another person leads to the hypnotic process that is characterized by a powerful obedience and credulity. There is literally a transfer of representations of a person to the other on the basis of a powerful common sensory bond.


It is at this point of our subject that we locate the common sensory baggage as the primordial basis of the attachment, i.e. the sharing of his senses and his representations with other persons.


There is a libido investment with the object of attachment. We presuppose that the more common the sensibility is to both persons who are attached one to the other, the more is installed between them an obedience to the Other, credulity towards the other, and the abandonment of oneself. To illustrate this concept of attachment -- common sensory division -- let us return to Freud:

One can notice in passing that apart from hypnosis, in real life, a credulity like that of which hypnotized gives proof with regard to his hypnotist is found only in the attitude of the child with regard to the loved parents; and that this way of granting with such a submission its own psychic life onto that of another person has a unique but perfect equivalent in certain love affairs characterized by a total abandonment of oneself. The union of exclusive attachment and credulous obedience generally counts among the traits characteristic of love. (Freud, 13, pp. 16-17)

2.3.2 Theoretical Base

In the Anglo-Saxon world, the concept of attachment made its appearance following the work of Bowlby on the deprivation of maternal affection, work inspired by those well-known of Spitz on the hospitalized. In 1958, Bowlby and Harlow published two articles each one of a different orientation but convergent on the bonds that link the child with his mother. These two works, according to Bucher, can be regarded as starting point of this psychology that caused many researches both in ethologic and in genetic psychology.


K. Lorenz and R. Zazzo contributed their share afterwards. Less known was the contribution of the “Hungarian School” with in its center of the men like Ferenczi, Balint, Hermann and Szondi. I. Hermann devoted his work to the attachment based on ethologic observations. Szondi grasped the importance of the work of Hermann and inserted these observations into his own research:

To Szondi comes the merit to have grasped the importance of work of Hermann, and to have drawn from it the conclusions that were essential: that the phenomena of clinging and of attachment are highly significant, as certainly first outlines of socialization, but more still as a basis of the complex psychic structuring of the human being. (Bucher, 8, p. 331)


Here is sealed the destiny of individuals through that of other human beings. But it is not sufficient thus that socialization takes place. The one, in the full meaning of the term, depends nevertheless on a symbolic law that alone founds the social dimension of others.


Even the symbiosis of mother-child is not a phenomenon that arises strictly from Contact, “It would find its basis in the vector of the ego, namely in the function p - of participation” (Bucher, 8, p. 332).


The dependence of the union mother-child is transformed gradually into an object relation, i.e. intermittent with regard to an object that to him or her confers essential care and food satisfactions, and of which the child recognizes little by little its existence as a non-ego element.

This recognition and this “becoming conscious” is possible insofar as the child gives up the dual participation (reaction p -), and directs himself towards the pole of an individualized self-assertion (p +), where the desires are not any more projected and lived in the other, but assumed in their ambitendencies*. (Bucher, p. 332) [*ambitendencies: a tendency to act in opposite ways or directions; the presence of opposing behavioral drives]


Let us reconsider now with this subject this force that “attaches” us to the others and that is located at the root of our being. We can usefully refer to the Winnicottean concept of holding and of maintenance. It would be according to Winnicott the experience of the dual union and of the “primary relation,” which confers on the child, from the continuity of reliable maternal care the sense of security allowing him a structuring integration of the ego. This one then becomes ready to support conditions of anxiety resulting at the same time from internal instinctual experiences and discontinuity, even of the temporary disintegration of the states of unity already acquired.


Szondi proposes a concept equivalent to that of “holding,” that of Halt, to hold, to retain, to support or to maintain. Szondi affirms the importance of the Haltobjekt [support object], a support object that carries us, that confers the security to be able to have a reliable support and one’s own; and still it is a matter of objects to which he or she can hold and by which he or she is maintained.


Bucher announces that Szondi, unlike Winnicott, insists more on the effect that the maternal “holding” produced on the child than on the activity of the mother herself.

This effect results in the putting one’s “self” on its feet, a “spinal column” that “holds” the individual and allows him “to hold himself” in front of others. As far as the degree to which then object relations are constituted, the substitute objects can be invested that, in their turn come to corroborate the support and the self-confidence of the subject. (Bucher, 8, p. 335)


At the beginning, the attachment with the mother rests, in the other, on the illusion of being the Other and vice versa. This illusion appears in the vector of the ego under the reaction of participation (Sch O -): the child creates for itself the maternal breast; it is the breast and from the effect of the magic omnipotence that characterizes the participation.


In what of this illusion is to be found again in the dynamic that makes us tend towards the Other?

To speak with Winnicott: the beneficial experience of the primary illusion provides the child with the capacity of (re) creating substitute desires for the first desire, and this by the means of representations and fantasies giving aid to the primary illusion. It is enough to point out the positive aspects that Szondi as well as Winnicott confer on this transformation of the illusion: imaginative, artistic, and scientific creativity, the relationship with the arts, religion, the spirit, and human values in general…. (Bucher, 8, p. 337)


What is indicated here is, we think, the feeling of working in a human communion that gives to each being his participative dimension. This feeling answers in an echo the more powerful feeling of union with the mother, a kind of “logical premise” to all mental activity whatever it be. The attachment is the rich time of the irreducible bond to the Other.


From the Szondian point of view, the attachment registered basically in the contact is essential to establish object relations.

The C (contact) vector represents this drive that has as its specific task the search for the object; that its tension comes from its internal bipolar articulation; that it is nourished by specific (but hypothetical) energy sources; and finally, that its satisfaction consists in the establishment of object relations, but in close interaction with the other six drive needs, and particularly in drive alliance with the two needs for the S vector of sexuality. The vector of the Contact thus occupies a particular place in the drive system. It would constitute initially the base of this system, in the sense where is essential its “entering into action,” establishing “bridges” so that the other drive tendencies can reach satisfaction. (Bucher, 8, p. 339)


Whether this bond is an instinct or a drive, that goes beyond our scope. The important thing in our eyes remains the obviousness of a power that pushes us towards the others. We indicate there the term “attachment” while knowing that this term returns to a process that is built primarily with the whole beginning of the life of a child whereas we speak about a force that acts at any age of life.


The forces resulting from this source are not in the strict sense the same realm as that of attachment such as it is described in the very first stages of the child, but we think that these forces originate in this source, and in this degree, we will give them the same name for more “simplicity.”

2.4 Dialectical of Attachment and Detachment
2.4.1 Philosophical interpretation

The detachment is that which detaches, therefore, decreases the constraints of attachment and increases the degrees of freedom of the one who is detached. Inversely, the attachment tends to attach and “to imprison” something by something.


From the point of view of movement, the detachment increases the degree of freedom, contrary to the attachment that tends to immobilize and to contain the movement by an attachment.


Life is movement. All that is alive moves. The ionic exchanges of Na+ through the cellular membrane are the condition of its potential of a membrane and of its internal movements. Inside the body, everything moves unceasingly.


Attachment, on the other hand, slows down the movement and contains it. At the end of the extreme attachment resides death, total immobility. But the extreme detachment also leads it to a morbid process as a disintegration of the structures.


It is in the dialectical between these two extremes that we want to locate the cycle of creation. A half-cycle where reigns the attachment (k-) to the Other, and a half-cycle (k+) where reigns the detachment from the Other. Neither one nor the Other are in oneself solutions; it is rather a question of circulating between these positions in order to guarantee the good balance between the forces that move us away from the Other and those that bring us closer.


Normalization or normative adaptation is combined with creation, breath of life, to orchestrate the ballet of the destiny of a person who would like himself or herself to be and to be human, i.e. capable for the self-to-emerge in a relation with oneself and capable to belong to a species, to a community: that of humanity.

2.4.2 The Thought Must Be Braked….

 The man is a being with brakes. If he releases one of them, he shouts his freedom (poor fellow!); however he holds hundred of others well in place of them. The speed of the images and of the ideas is due to the loss of control. Only the brakes make the thought slow and usable. It is naturally extremely fast, madly fast. (Michaux, 21, p. 241)


Henri Michaux has experimented with the action of psychedelic drugs under medical supervision. His exploration led him to write a book that tells of his experience under the light of a tight analysis and a meticulous description.


We consider that the experiences under psychedelic drugs can clarify the trajectory of a thought detached from reality. For us to convince some of this, we will quote the first lines of his book.

Any drug modifies your supports. The support that you take in your senses, the support that your senses took in the world, the support that you take in your general impression to be. They yield. A vast redistribution of the sensitivity is made, which makes everything bizarre, a complex and continual redistribution of the sensibility. You feel less here, and more there. Where is “here”? Where is “there”? In tens of “here,” in tens of “there,” that you do not know and that you do not recognize. Obscure zones that were clear. Light things that were heavy. It is not any more with you where you and reality end and even the objects, losing their mass and their stiffness, cease a serious resistance to a strength to omnipresent mobility transformer. (...) You undergo multiples and different invitations to let go…. (Michaux, 21, pp. 9-10)


If we take again the dialectical of attachment and detachment, here also too much attached to the thought brakes it and extinguishes it. While too much detachment propels it at such a speed that it becomes demonic, paralyzing, and wild and resembles a torrent that carries in its path all the representations and all the stable ties. Nothing resists a thought that was detached; it reaches an exponential trajectory.


We will illustrate one of the premier harmful effects of the detachment of the thought by the concept of “neotenic* thought”:

Before a thought is achieved and comes to maturity; it gives birth to a new thing, and this is hardly born, incompletely formed, and puts in the world another, a brood of others that similarly are answered in unexpected and irretrievable references and that until now I have not succeeded to portray. (Michaux, 21, p. 92)

[*neotenic = an evolutionary trend to be born earlier so that development is cut off at an earlier stage and juvenile characteristics are retained in adults of the species]


The psychedelic experiment shows also phenomena that points out curiously what one can observe in a detachment of intense thought such as empty abstractions:

I witness a collapse of the concrete, a few excited moments ago, that does not thus leave its passage thus that I do not know what it is, special abstraction by sudden impoverishment, precipitous exhaustion (of the sensibility), by cataclysmic deconcretisation. Abstraction suis generis*. Phenomenon here frequent. A marvel that each time leaves you confused. A good model undoubtedly of other “analysed” secrecies. … But that is inserted like a nail. (...). Autonomous abstraction, which does not work and does not bind us to others, sufficient to itself and that leaves us dumbfounded. (Michaux, 21, p. 128)

[*suis generis = constituting a class alone; unique]


These abstractions that do not help us to think but that invade the mental fields by leaving the look of that of the one who undergoes them completely dumbfounded is a phenomenon that one meets in a thought strongly detached from reality as much as one who is under the effect of drugs.


There exists many other traps that await the thought of the creator when he detaches it from reality. We are not able to give further information on these aspects; nevertheless, we will finish this subject with one of the most frightening traps of the thought that self-feeds and that we would indicate as the loss of the North Pole for a compass, the deviation from the feeling of certainty.


This feeling is the emotional basis of all intellectual thought; it guarantees it the emotional density as its content. It is vital for the spirit that this feeling is regulated to perfection on solid references. A spirit that would not realize any more that its feeling of certainty is fundamentally biased is a spirit dedicated to a total blind alley. All the critical equipment of our spirit rests on the force of feeling and on the conviction that this feeling establishes in us. To touch the bases of this feeling in somebody is to make it tremble in the soul because it does know any more to position itself to what exists.


This phenomenon is the point of no return. Indeed, it can happen that a creator denied in his course by others is closed again in his world and devotes all his energy to his quest. He can be identified at this point with his quest that he cannot any more live without thinking of it continuously. The detachment of his thought operating during many months can lead him to an extreme that we locate as a point of no return. The psychedelic experiment of H. Michaux illustrates perfectly of what consists a point of no return at the psychic level following an excess of detachment. This extract is long but it has the great merit to approach the danger that threatens the creator if he goes too far in the detachment.

And continue to present to him traps, as he has never met and of which he would not have even had the idea to be wary. In the tragedy of the disproportionate reinforcements where he advances, here comes (and he does not see it) the most serious perhaps that which will be made the doors of refuge to be closed again on him, the feeling of total certainty. Because of this feeling he continues to go along in “his life parades” that ought not resist a critical examination. But they resist and perfectly. He has received a blinding message of the Truth. This feeling of the obvious fact there, without relationship to the feeling current with the obvious fact, is something that is necessary to have known during the mescaline intoxication, in its suddenness, its punch, its almost mechanical caricatures, in order to understand that there is no possible parade (stressed by us). The idea closes again on oneself, as the lid of a strong box that has shut. No more exit. The idea finishes the loop; the idea in one moment completed, final, immured. Becomes truth with a capital ‘T’. Sometimes, it happened sometimes to an experimenter of mescaline to see an idea, especially if it is strange for him (that somebody has just communicated to him on the spot or by telephone); it comes to him, in a last time of freedom (two seconds are enough), to see it seize him, and to grab it. The lunatic does not see himself grabbed. He is it before having seen it. He remains; he will remain in the abyss of being convinced of the truth of it, innocent, slave, ignoramus who is a slave. Without the incomparable increase in the feeling of certainty, not of the lunatic. The faith makes the madness, makes him remain there, not enabling him to correct himself, nor with the assistance of others, the absorbing idea to which he has given his support.  To this idea he has succumbed, he submitted himself to this suggestion as somebody who submitted himself to the suggestion of a hypnotist. Totally. The operation in love at first sight is not even necessary. There can not be any awareness of the meeting. In one moment he is within it. Immersed in the obviousness of the Truth that from all sides advances and radiates, and rains on him. Though the “idea” appears to others absurd, delirious, limited (because they see only the outcrops of it), it is for him an incomparable idea, an idea with answer to everything, a cathedral idea that places it outside of petty criticisms and, in a certain way, falls under the secret laws of the Universe. His knowledge, which is to be known by illumination, does not have anything common with other knowledge and resides in him like a phantom without borders and that criticism cannot examine. Not any more. Of that which fascinates one cannot examine. He finds that an idea at present has power over him. Before, his spirit would have had power over it. Now it alone has power. And he is under its power, without reserve, without “but,” without any saying no. (...) Not being able to have foreseen this dominating idea, not being able, not having been able to see his absorption by the absorbing idea, thus does he not feel anything? If. And (new appearance of persecution) he almost always knows, as more or less said of hundreds of thousands of the mentally ill, than “there occurs something in his back,” even if he believes himself Emperor of the emperors. Every lunatic knows that something of importance has escaped him. (Michaux, 21, pp. 215-217)


When a being prefers to obey the laws of the Universe, the law of men seems quite ridiculous. Who is wrong? Who is right? In creation, the creator opens areas where the law of the men has not stepped in yet while he appropriately feels well the presence of the laws of the universe that guides him.  Finally, he knows himself as a creature in the universe like all the other men, if so then which reference to choose? This is the crossroads of the devil: each path leads to a radically different destiny and it is necessary to choose which road to take without knowing too much where they all go… Nobody knows where a point of no return is and sometimes it is too late when he has seen it.

2.5 Love of the Other

The love of the Other is the investment of libido in an object of love. This investment is only possible with the condition -- let us take the case of heterosexuality -- that the narcissistic libido capital decreases in order to allow the libido “charge” of the object of love. The “center of gravity” of the libido is deported into the Other.


This economy -- a little simplistic -- of the heart plunges us in the stake of the love of the other faced with creation. The creative process detaches the individual from the other persons in one way or another. Very often, it is given birth from a “fissure” in the participation with the Other that we suppose puts at a given moment the ego in danger. Creation clearly seems to have a color, let us say that is defensive or rather protective. It is a powerful autocentric process whose power seems to be correlative of “the wound to the Other.” Then how to leave this process to go towards this Other? And why go towards this Other?


We think that the elements of the answers are to be drawn from the love relation.

 The adult love requires a double aptitude to establish a symbiotic state and to return to the limits of one’s own ego. This capacity to adopt and to leave one or the other pattern without difficulties and at the opportune moment is essential there. (Besdine, 3, p. 204)


According to Alberoni (1, p. 131), the incipient love feeds from this differential tension that must become single. For him (1, p. 9): “What is it to fall in love? It is the state born from a collective movement of the two of them.”

 The budding love separates what was close-knit and links what was separate; but the union is done in a particular way, because it is presented in the form of a structural alternative to a structured relation. The new structure defies the old structure up to its roots and reduces it to a thing deprived of any value. In parallel, it builds the new community on an absolute value, an absolute right, and reorganizes all the rest around this right. This new organization does not occur immediately but during a process. What appears at the moment is the pure object of Eros. This object appears to us as a revelation. (Alberoni, 1, p. 31)


The very nature of the budding love implies that one trusts the Other, that one relies on him or her, and that one abandons oneself to the other. The love in a budding state tends to fusion, but to the fusion of two different persons. For that the love to be born requires that there be diversity and the budding love is a will, a force to overcome this diversity that however exists and must exist. The loved person interests one because he or she is different and because he or she is bearer of his or her own specificity and that one can not confuse with any other person.

The budding state involves a way of thinking, of seeing, of feeling, and of living completely different. Those who find themselves in this situation and in this state understand one another deeply. Although their personal history is radically different, their relation in the world is identical. This is why, in the great collective movements, composed of the thousands and the thousands of persons of different ages and of different social environments, “recognize themselves” and form a collective unit, a “we.” The same phenomenon occurs when one falls in love. (Alberoni, 1, pp. 70-71)


The love of the Other can generate a negation of one’s course in transfiguring one by the union with the Other. It seems that the thesis of Alberoni goes in the sense of a major negation of oneself in order to fall in love.

Actually, they are not predisposed to fall in love, even if they wish it. The love that they wish, even ardently, does not correspond to a necessity to break completely with the past and with a necessity to call into question their life and to take the risk of being projected into an absolute innovation. Nobody falls in love if he or she is, even partially, satisfied with what he or she has and with what he or she is. Love is born from a depressive overload that is characterized by the impossibility of finding in everyday existence something that is worth taking any trouble about. The “symptom” of the predisposition to love is not the conscious desire of falling in love, nor the intense desire to enrich one’s existence; but the profound feeling not to exist, not to have any value and shame at not having some value. The feeling of nothingness and the shame of one’s own nullity: such are the harbingers of the state in love. (...) It is not the longing for love that pushes us to fall in love, but the certainty of not having anything to lose in becoming what we become; it is the prospect of nothing in front of us. At this point in time this pattern develops in us to face a different situation and to take risks and this propensity to throw oneself into any adventure and something that those who are satisfied with themselves cannot know. (Alberoni, 1, p. 78)


Here is developed the masterly action of Nemesis through the self-destruction of one’s ego allowing the opening the Other, the friendship footbridge or bond of love, at all events, the friendship is still a manner of loving. For Alberoni, the budding state’s source is in the depressive overload.


The Other in that it is a reference of oneself is a break of the absolute relation to oneself and introduces a relative relation to oneself, i.e. mediated by the Other.

To know our shared love, we are made to perceive who the being that we are, if modest that is to say the judgment that we bear on ourselves, compared to that which we are and what the others are worth hold a certain value. This value is the being loved that confers it to us, which incarnates any potential value. (Alberoni, 1, p. 113)


To break the detachment, attachment is needed. For a human being, that would be called love; it is to love a person who becomes the ambassadress for all the others.

4. Quarter k - p -

k - and p - are the mark of the Other in the sense where the limit comes from what is not me. Oedipus is there to recall for us that, without the law of the Other, the father, there is no limit to the desire for omnipotence. The idea is that the limit to our desire for omnipotence can only come from what is not us and what limits imagination is the Other and reality. And k- p- is reality and the Other.


k- indicates the negation of one’s world of fantasy and p- indicates the participative position. This is the reaction of the man in the street without personal ambitions and inhibited in his imaginative function. This is somebody altogether very available and who fits in society like a fish in water.


k- p- is thus a position that we will not develop but only signals to us as being a stage for setting out a night light in the creative process. This is the complete relation with the Other, without variation and without distance: one does not believe at all. One participates, one obeys, the world turns and we follow it.


When the creator rejoins this position of k- p-, he has succeeded in leaving his course to join the others. He is in the common sensory bath and he shares the common representations. It is in the sense that he is not delirious because he possesses this baggage. He thus has a will of sharing, of communication, and of availability to the other.


The creative act has its base in the fact that a person takes again into account his senses. At this time, he does not seek any more to share the same sensory baggage (“sensory autarky”: k+). The individual orients his senses for his own representations and finally his own image of himself (“representational autarky*”: p+). [*autarky = self-sufficiency]


But, from a social point of view, as soon as a person modifies and calibrates his or her sensibility and his or her perception to his or her own ends, this person is likely to move away from the codes, the standards, and conventions that lay down the social rules and that set up communication. The more specifically this person invests what corresponds to his or her manner of being at the perceptive level, the more we have the probability that this person shares less his or her perceptive baggage with that of others.


If this personal perception forms a deposit in a representation and that this representation specific to oneself invades the mental fields, there are strong chances that the common representations registered in this person are disinvested.


This process can open a door towards a mechanism of the psychotic type if the individual structures himself according to his perceptions without taking account of “the manner of being social” such as the interpretation of the Rorschach (Ban%, F+%) and of the T.A.T. stresses it for the diagnoses of psychosis. In any case, the least that one can anticipate is an antisocial behavior.


The total rupture with the Other can be avoided by a reciprocating movement that makes the ego to travel into the different positions. This cyclic aspect is known as the factor of balance in particular in the cycle of the contact (clinging – contact; unhooking – rupture of the contact). That would make it possible to avoid an excessive structuring in one or the other poles. It is in the sense that the quarter k- p- is an essential stage in the creative process to prevent that it does not go wrong.


Jean Mélon (18) points out the importance of the object with which to fusion with in creation. The Other (a close relation) is a continual presence-absence. If this other is too intrusive, creation is not possible any more. If he moves away too far, things do not go well any more. All creative space is supported by an invisible but efficient framework that is the symbolic maternal presence.


To enter in k- p- is to join this Other. The participation is set up (p-), the attachment is powerful, “I am the other.” k - maintains in us the place that the Other will be able to take: k - removes from our narcissistic economy the libido that is redistributed to the Other (p -). The union is realized, agreement reigns.

Articulation of Interpretation According to

                             Maldiney - Mélon

We are indebted in Jean Mélon (18) for having allowed us to have access to a popularization of the complex thought of Maldiney. The subject matter that will follow is largely inspired by the Szondi seminars 1995 that Mélon gave at the University of Liège.


There are kinds of homology between the work of art and the ego on the level of structure. The ego constructs itself as a work of art is built. And conversely, a work of art is built in the manner of the ego. (Maldiney, 17)


Szondi calls the ego the “pontifex oppositorum ego.” Ego is a fault [faille]. According to the destiny of constraint, the ego is only a drive, i.e. natural, and (on the other side of the fault [la faille]) according to the second destiny, the ego exists by the destiny of choice. The choice is what allows existence in other words.


With Maldiney, the opposition that he applies to Szondi is the opposition between constraint and choice. This is not between constraint and freedom because freedom, that which conditions even the possibility of being free, is that one has choice obviously. If one does not have a choice, one cannot speak about freedom. Freedom implies that choice is possible.


p + is the human possibility par excellence but it is obviously that which leads to madness because the p + is that which has the ambition to be everything or any being. The point of view of absolute p + is a solipsist point of view: what I think is true and with me alone, I fill up the whole world. That is what realizes the megalomania paranoiac.


According to Mélon, philosophy is the normal form of paranoia. Paranoia is the morbid form of a manner of philosophical, i.e. systematic, thinking.


Paranoia is characterized by this systematic side; it interprets everything according to a postulate that proves to be indefensible. Since there has been philosophy, i.e. since the Greeks, the Pre-Socratics deal with the whole; they seized the world as a totality. The ambition of philosophy since its beginnings is always to seize again the whole.

1. Fusco and Catatonia

Maldiney makes the analysis of the painting of Fusco starting from the Szondian positions of the ego: p +/ p -, k +/ k-.


Fusco is a complete catatonic who does not speak, who does not move, and then who suddenly starts to paint. He paints on the walls with materials collected even from the ground. He refused to use the material that one gave him except towards the end when he agreed to paint on paper. His works are in Lausanne at the museum of crude art, i.e. the art of schizophrenics and the debilitated.


The essence of the catatonia is paradoxically the assertion of nothing. The catatonic does not say anything, does not do anything, and does not move. The typical symptom of catatonia is the negativism; he is a negativist on all levels; he destroys everything. It is among them that one finds the “troubles” of the language of schizophrenia that wishes to say nothing any more, the jargon “cacacam, emegna, gnacacac.


When they want indeed to speak, it is like that that they speak. There is like that a kind of destruction and a devalorization of everything.


Therefore, with the catatonic, his fundamental attitude is negativist. When he wants indeed to say something to us, he says that he does not exist, that he does not have a body, that he is dead; and he expresses all this in his very being since he is there like a stone. One always compares the catatonic to a rock and to a stone. What remains to him of existence does not produce anything else than this non-life that he incarnates. He is a mummy, he is completely fossilized. When he devotes himself to an activity, it is an activity of destruction.


This leaves the assumption that, at the beginning, if he were catatonic, he ought to have the reaction of the catatonic ego k -! p O.


Maldiney poses as a postulate that k-! p O is the anti-creative reaction par excellence. k-! p O is to be interpreted in the sense of opposing the background that Szondi calls the theoretical background, i.e. the exactly opposite reaction: k +! p ±. Maldiney suggests that at the most creative moment of this crude artist ought to be in this position: k +! p ±.


k - goes against creation. All that k- can do is to deform or to deny the forms that were really created. k - destroys what is of the order of creation. Maintaining all rational thought is, from this point, destructive; it is in any case anti-creative. If we do not let ourselves go with this creative pressure that, so to speak, comes spontaneously, we let us start to erase, and then in the final analysis one is able no more to make anything at all because that is the danger.


What Maldiney stresses most vigorously is that the anti-creative position par excellence is the position k -, especially if it is associated with p O: k - p O.


k - is the third position of the circuit. Maldiney makes it the catatonic position, but it should indeed be seen as the negative aspect of catatonia.


k -! is also the reaction of the neurotic; k -! is the neurotic reaction par excellence. The neurotic who is not obviously negativist but who, to himself, lives in the negation and who, owing to the fact t