The Holy War to end all wars? On tolerance, empathy and compassion – musings along developmental lines.

A `developmental path of tolerance’: does such a path exist? In this article the meanings of notions such as tolerance, empathy and compassion are explored. Starting with individual `developmental paths’ and collective societal developments, a broader existential perspective inspired by evolutionary psychology is presented. One possible developmental path is presented, based on evolution in the form of differentiation and integration, transcending and including: empathy includes and transcends tolerance, compassion includes and transcends both.
For our collective survival we need as individuals to move from inner, divided,(pre)self with variable levels of tolerance, via a coherent self that can afford to be empathic, toward an experience of mutual connectedness and dependence, where self-attachment can fade and compassion surface.
A holy war outside ourselves can never solve the problem: the only holy struggle is that of a resolute personal, collective and structural nonviolent transformation to a more integrated society.

On Applied Psychoanalysis and Applied Literature

“Applied literature” appears to be replacing Freud’s “applied psychoanalysis” in which literary works are interpreted by means of psychoanalytic theories. The starting point here is that insights from depth-psychology operate within literature itself which raises certain questions and which in themselves could influence the further development of psychoanalysis. In the “postmodern” novel, in which preoccupations with family and relations reminds one of certain Freudian case studies, the nearly forgotten concept of “hysteria” makes a comeback. Siri Hustvedt’s novel What I loved serves as an illustration of this. This novel is analysed as a story in which hysteria is displayed in several different ways and forms the nucleus of a scene in which the author shows us a glimpse of her desire.

From Passionate Welcome to Critical Toleration: The History and Future of the Dutch Publications of Freud

The author describes from a publisher’s point of view the history of the Dutch Freud-publications in the twentieth century. The focus is on several publishers who pub¬lished the work of Freud for the Dutch market, or who took the initiative to do so, like S.C. van Doesburgh, De Wereldbibliotheek, De Bezige Bij and Uitgeverij Boom. The author clarifies how these publishers held key positions in the network of translators, edi¬tors, journalists and professionals like psychoanalysts. Three periods can be distinguished in the history of the Dutch Freud-publications: 1912-WW I, the introduction of Freud; WW I-1950, the popularization of Freud; and 1960-1990, the canonization and criticism of Freud. Several publications of Freud and their critical reception are described, to show how an author like Freud has found his way into the Netherlands, and how several players on the market contributed to this. Also, the new scientific edition of Freud (Works), ar¬ranged chronologically and being prepared now by Boom Publishers, is introduced. Is there a future for Freud in the Netherlands and Flanders in the twenty-first century?

Psychoanalysis and Modernity

This article gives a rough sketch of psychoanalysis as part of modern culture (modernity) and as participating in the problematic of modern culture (modernity). It starts from the present day lack of interest in psychoanalysis. Psychoanalysis is minimally defined by its concern for human experience, dividedness and conflict and for the maintenance of a lack. Present day culture can be described by a prevalence of instrumentalism, narcissism and the practice of a culture of immediacy. It can be interpreted in a one-sided way as an actualisation of modernity. Modernity is not characterized by instrumentality alone but also by the importance of the dimension of subjectivity (experience, conflict and lack). The actual relevance of psychoanalysis might be found in the way psychoanalysis reminds present day culture of its own one-sidedness in relation to modernity.

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Silently self evident: on memory and fantasy

The author argues that there is a self evident relation between memory and fantasy. In the first part of the paper some fantasies about memory are brought to the fore. Also several factors that play a part in the availability of memories are discussed. Special consideration is given to conscious and unconscious repression. The second part concerns the inseparable interrelation of memory and fantasy, at which point the author explains the statement that every act of memory is also an act of imagination. Finally the vicissitudes of certain fantasies and their significance for implicit relational patterns are discussed. Particular attention is paid to the possible transition of a fantasy from the explicit to the implicit memory system.

Silently Self Evident: on Memory and Fantasy

The author argues that there is a self evident relation between memory and fantasy. In the first part of the paper some fantasies about memory are brought to the fore. Also several factors that play a part in the availability of memories are discussed. Special consideration is given to conscious and unconscious repression. The second part concerns the inseparable interrelation of memory and fantasy, at which point the author explains the statement that every act of memory is also an act of imagination. Finally the vicissitudes of certain fantasies and their significance for implicit relational patterns are discussed. Particular attention is paid to the possible transition of a fantasy from the explicit to the implicit memory system.