Viola Carofalo

The Twilight of the Gods. Survival Strategies of Subaltern Subjects in Georges Devereux

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Clinical Ethnopsychiatry; Anthropology; Psychoanalysis; Antagonistic Acculturation; Subalternity.

The aim of the reflection of Georges Devereux is the establishment of a therapeutic practice in the ethnopsychiatric field. This article shows in which way Devereux adopts this principle to the studies about mental illness suffered by Plains Indian during the mid-fifties, using his anthropological and psychoanalytical skills. Starting from the case of Jimmy Picard - the main character of the famous essay "Reality and dream: Psychotherapy of a Plains Indian" -, Devereux illustrates the different psychic reactions of the subjects who live a subordinate condition, which was determined by colonization or other forms of economic, social, racial, linguistic, and cultural dominance; this underlines how the complete acceptance of a collective model (imposed or self-imposed) can cause the destruction of individuality.

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