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Concepts in Psychoanalysis


Module description

This module presents fundamental psychoanalytic concepts drawn from the Freudian, British School and Lacanian traditions. It offers a strong grounding in key psychoanalytic ideas and a critical introduction to the ways in which these ideas originated and have developed. It forms the basis for the modules on the MA Psychoanalytic Studies that deal with the ‘application’ of psychoanalysis to social, historical and cultural issues.

Indicative module content

  • The Freudian Unconscious
  • The Drives: Sex, Aggression, Life and Death
  • Repression and Other Defences
  • The Structure of the Mind: Id, Ego, Superego
  • Oedipus, Masculinity, Femininity
  • The Principles of Object Relations Theory
  • Mourning, Melancholia, Depression and Loss
  • The Paranoid-Schizoid Position and Other Extremes
  • Imaginary, Symbolic and Real in Lacanian Psychoanalysis
  • Interpretation and Transference

Learning objectives

By the end of this module, you will:

  • understand key concepts of psychoanalysis
  • be able to differentiate between psychoanalytic ideas characteristic of some of the main ‘schools’ of psychoanalysis
  • be able to critically assess the significance and standing of these key concepts
  • be sufficiently confident to use these concepts in further studies of psychoanalysis.