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Article (Scientific journals)
Mécanismes d’indifférenciation entre l’imaginaire et le rationnel chez le schizophrène
Gauthier, Jean-Marie; Widart, Frederic 
2008 • In Encéphale (L'), 34 (4), p. 376-384
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Keywords :
Dream; Delirium; Schizophrenia; rêve; délire; schizophrénie
Abstract :
[en] Introduction Our investigation into dream and delirium in schizophrenic subjects was based on the notion of magical thought developed by Sami-Ali. Starting from this notion, we attempted to determine whether they somehow differentiate the psychic space of dream from that of delirium, whether either of these two spaces, or both, are caught in a relational deadlock, and eventually to analyse the quality of the relationship to others. Hypothesis The underlying assumption is that magical thought is foregrounded in the psychic life of schizophrenic subjects, and that these subjects do not distinguish between the psychic spaces of dream and delirium, nor between the world, others, and themselves. Results Results show first that the prevalence of magical thought has the following consequences: (a) features characterizing space are those of an imaginary space, i.e. internal and external realities are blurred, what is outside is reflected inside, and vice versa, the subject–object distinction is cancelled to leave one single reality that ignores contradiction; (b) the time of discourse is an imaginary time: their discourses express past and future as belonging to an absolute “perpetual” present. Events they mention are experienced as contemporary. Causal relations, being imaginary, can be reversed. However, some socially sanctioned landmarks in time are often maintained. These are rarely related to any event in their own emotional lives. Second, our results provide evidence for some permeability between the space of dream and the space of delirium. Yet, this permeability can vary from one subject to another. Third, they show that relational deadlocks recur regularly, though not systematically, in the lives of our subjects. Relational deadlocks in dreams are not easy to detect. Discussion Finally, the kind of relationship those people have to others is quite paradoxical: physical closeness results in emotional distance, and conversely emotional closeness is only possible in physical distance. The others cannot really exist in the relationship; they are a horizon towards which those people yearn without ever being able to reach it. This kind of paradox, of relational deadlock, may be the ground on which psychosis thrives: it is impossible to be close to the nonself, while it is also deeply wished for. Even the logic of imaginary space – in which everything should be possible – cannot help overcome this paradox. And – a paradox within the paradox – this logic still comes upon a deadline in the potentially infinite and indefinite space it produces. This boundary could be the deadlock that cannot and yet must be overcome, a deadlock that would endlessly fuel the patients’ delirium.
[fr] o Nos recherches sur le rêve et le délire chez des sujets schizophrènes se sont basées sur le concept de « pensée magique » développé par Sami-Ali. À partir de ce concept, nous avons tenté de repérer l’existence d’une indifférenciation ou non entre l’espace psychique du rêve et celui du délire, l’existence d’une impasse relationnelle dans l’un ou les deux de ces espaces et enfin d’analyser la qualité de la relation à autrui. L’hypothèse de base sous-tendant ce travail postule que chez les schizophrènes, la pensée magique occupe le devant de la vie psychique, au moins partiellement, et que le sujet a un rapport indifférencié entre l’espace psychique du rêve et celui du délire, mais également entre le monde, autrui et lui-même. Les résultats montrent que, premièrement, la présence de l’espace imaginaire rend équivoque la distinction entre réalité intérieure et extérieure, et que le temps du discours est le présent, c’est-à-dire que les événements relatés sont évoqués avec un sentiment de contemporanéité ; deuxièmement, qu’une indifférenciation entre l’espace du rêve et l’espace du délire semble établi, bien qu’à des degrés variables d’un sujet à l’autre ; troisièmement, que les impasses relationnelles sont régulièrement, mais non systématiquement, repérables dans l’histoire des personnes ; enfin, le rapport à autrui semble se dérouler sur le principe selon lequel le rapprochement physique crée la distance émotionnelle et inversement.
Disciplines :
Treatment & clinical psychology
Author, co-author :
Gauthier, Jean-Marie
Widart, Frederic ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > Département de Psychologie > Psychologie clinique de l'adulte
Language :
French
Title :
Mécanismes d’indifférenciation entre l’imaginaire et le rationnel chez le schizophrène
Alternative titles :
[en] Mechanisms of indeterminacy between the imaginary and the rational worlds in schizophrenic subjects
Publication date :
September 2008
Journal title :
Encéphale (L')
ISSN :
0013-7006
Publisher :
Elsevier, France
Volume :
34
Issue :
4
Pages :
376-384
Peer reviewed :
Peer Reviewed verified by ORBi

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