The “Negativity Internalized” and the “Negativity Perverse”: the Aftermath Traumata Experienced by Their Ancestors in the Souls of Contemporary Russians.

Paul V. Katchalov, MD, PhD. Head, Psychoanalysis Unit, Serbsky Institute. Kropotkinsky per, 23. Moscow, Russia. Fax: 7-495-632-22-75. E-mail:

Abstract. Transgenerational transmission of 20th century collective traumata in Russia. The applicability of André Green’s concepts of “internalized negativity” and “perverse negativity”. Affect of shame for cowardice and meanness of three generations as the main obstacle to psychoanalysis. Family secrets, suppressing any work of secondary process thinking. Incestuousity as the common final pathway of the familial closure in keeping their secrets. Analysis – as a threat to familial narcissism, patient’s narcissism, and incestuous isolation. Negative countertransference reactions provocations. Analysts’ difficulties: their need for deep knowledge in history and literature, tact, courage, ingenuity, impeccable reliability, flexibility, and firmness in the face of unusual, paradoxical, and paralyzing functioning of patients’ souls.

Abstrakt. Transgenerationelle Übertragung des 20. kollektiven Traumata in Rußland. Die Anwendbarkeit von André Green Konzepte von „verinnerlichten Negativität“ und „perverse Negativität“. Affekt der Scham für Feigheit und Gemeinheit von drei Generationen als das Haupthindernis für die Psychoanalyse. Familiäre Geheimnisse, Unterdrückung jeglicher Arbeit des sekundären Prozeß Denkung. Inzestuösität als gemeinsame Endstrecke der familiären Verschluß zu halten ihre Geheimnisse. Analyse – als Bedrohung für die familiäre Narzißmus, Patienten Narzißmus und inzestuöse Isolation. Reaktionen Negatives Gegenübertragung Provokationen. Analytiker Schwierigkeiten: seinen Bedürfnissen nach tiefem Wissen in Geschichte und Literatur, Takt, Mut, Einfallsreichtum, tadelloser Zuverlässigkeit, Flexibilität und Festigkeit in das Gesicht ungewöhnlich, paradoxale und lähmende Funktionierung der Patienten Seelen.

Keywords: narcissistic equilibrium, countertransference, incestuous isolation

For many a year André Green (1993) continues his elaborations of Freudian that upon a time did not yet get the name of psychic negativity: libidinal viscosity, moral masochism, punishment seeking and repetition-constraint [Wiederholungszwang] (Freud S., 1920), of everything that leads to the psychoanalytical cure failure in the endless analysis (Freud, 1937a). In his most recent book on this subject (Green A., 2010) again enriches the conceptual psychoanalytic terms by introducing the “internalized negativity” and “perverse negativity” and did that from reading the literary evidence of the two writers, Russian and Hungarian, on the experiences of those who were the victims of totalitarianism of the 20th century.

Reading this book, I rethought, what in the souls of those who come to seek help from a psychoanalyst in Russia the beginning of the 21st century, these two kinds of psychic negativity (the repression and massive deformations of thought) are the most important squeals of very serious injuries (permanent threats of physical death), experienced by their grandparents in years 1920-1950 in the USSR, once brutal and carnival Utopia, and the less obvious consequences of traumas (suffering from continuing narcissistic threats), experienced by their parents in the years 1960-90 in Soviet Russia, still pretending to be the beginning communist paradise (“real socialism”).

Whether do these clinical cases rather fall within the “internalized negativity”? In permanent failure, unable to enjoy life and their capabilities. Self-punishment, when the grandfathers’ and fathers’ sins fall on the heads of their sons and their little sons.

Whether those are more in the realm of “perverse negativity”? Family lies, lies of patients. Envious hatred of the analyst of rare intensity? Of the analyst, who could not suffer in their place? Cynicism, where no one really believes anybody. Domestic violence of humiliating parental authorities.

I have withdrawn my clinical vignettes for ethical reasons and for the case of inevitable mess of such presentations (Freud). I would share my impression of having a greater trans-generational impact on male descendants and of the partial inhibition of thinking in all these cases. Inhibitions and distortions of their thinking capacities are, in my mind, strongly related to unspoken secrets of families enrolled in the history of collective traumata in the 20th century Russia. (Meanwhile the specifics of clinical cases, like everyone else here knows, prove nothing per se.)

How we nowadays can we work as psychoanalysts after the long reign (70 years) of the totalitarian utopia? The trans-generational projections of object representations and of internal object relations that were born in the souls of grandparents, around the year 1930, i.e., in the psyche of those who are now labelled by sociologists the “first Stalinist generation”, the projections of these representations that dated therefore of the era of totalitarian Utopia at its peak. Whether nowadays-Russian patients can fantasize independently of such a psychic heritage? The tragic clarity that we can assume, by reading such literary authors as Solzhenitsyn, Shalamov or Grossman, felt by at least those who were “grind to the camps dust”, was the approach of death. What did happen so specific to the descendants of survivors, that failed the light of these authors’ comrades’-in-misfortune clarity and how the descendants of the camps dust should live the experience of psychoanalysis?

But what if we deal here with “les secrets de la comédie”, after all? The traumatic historical events seem well-figured [darstellen] in the cultural environment. Many literary works and filmmakers talk about from within the “highbrow” culture to the reasonably cultivated and well-educated people. Countless are “political anecdotes” and jokes and stories with unambiguous evocations of traumata in the “lowbrow” culture. The history books abundant, and even the contents of all the 75 history school textbooks, officially authorized by the Ministry of National Education, although varying as to the exact numbers of victims but all agree that this number must be counted in tens of millions of people. Mathematically, the ancestors of each of our Russian nowadays alive, during the period between the communist coup d’état in 1917 and Stalin’s death in 1953 were subjects of “mass-form terror” (Lenin’s formula), all grandparents of the contemporary Russians thus, “participated” in the homicide and horror stories, either as victims or as the executioners, or “two odds of the barbed wire” in the macabre exchange of rôles.

Having had lived for more than thirty years in the social universe of terror without end, under the constant threat of death, the grandfathers, and the grandmothers (these are exceptionally fathers and mothers), left the third generation of Russians psychological heritage of exercising of memory repression in entire families.

After the generation of grandparents, that we can only reconstruct their psychic world, there is still the second generation. The generation of those who have lived most of their lives in the years 1960-90, certainly, under oppression, but the threats of this oppression were ubiquitous; these threats were not of physical death. These threats were all about narcissism, depending on countless bureaucratic “records” that those of the second generation, i.e., fathers and mothers of my contemporary Russian patients, these people often still alive, though mostly retired, their fatal records could become “bad” or “good” on the “goodwill” of the person in question. The person of the second generation was “free” to choose his fate from his earliest youth participating or not in the game requiring “to know nothing” about the fate of close relatives. The person, who chose to write the truth on the parents’ “dekulakization” (peasants blamed “kulaks” killed or exiled), on his family members emigration, etc., this person was not sent directly to the camps, but he could say goodbye to all his hopes of entering university, i.e., to the only way of upward social mobility. This one knew in advance that the KGB would always have an eye on him. Therefore, social advancement required the second generation to lie and to lie ever more with each new folder filled with his own hand. To confess him to be a liar for the sake of submission to authority, such a confession is very humiliating, especially since these were not anymore questions of life and death, most of the second-generation people preferred to believe they were not lying ever. They do not acknowledge demeaning themselves in the “voluntary servitude” for social benefits, often derisory. Thus, this second generation is the most recalcitrant in the denial of crimes of communism, these people certainly impeach psychological and social development. For the psychoanalyst, it is the social group the most hostile to any lifting of repressions, hostile to every psychoanalytical idea, the most narcissistically vulnerable group, the least able to make their grief work, therefore, a group with very strong incestuous tropism. (This is why the famous “babushka syndrome” is flourishing, the syndrome of grandmother, incestuous to the utmost.)

His narcissistic sufficiency, the Russian individual from the third generation most often appears in psychoanalyst’s office with no clear demand for analysis, and from the very beginning anything psychic is often very problematic to him, as aggravated by the events of massive suppression of the secondary thought process. Subject may come to see psychoanalyst with symptoms most often abortive, with isolated symptom of a phobia, or with a slight depression, or with complaints on his family members, or on a vague discomfort, but analysis soon stumbles on the real thinking bans, on resistances to link their trans-generational representations and their affects in the secondary process. These resistances can vary in the degree: from silly faked feeblemindedness in more simple people, up to almost exquisite stupidity in intellectuals and technocrats. The latter stupidity is the most evidently coloured by moral narcissism (“let’s don’t speak about”, “we talk wrong”, “you are rude”). They know seemingly everything about the history of the country, but they manage to don’t know anything about the history of their own families.

The elaboration of the primary process continues to run its course without corrections on the side of the actual reality behind the façade of or in the onset of symptoms soon to be found; rather common is development of “cold” persecution delusion, or dangerous acting out, either a somatization attacks. It seems to me it’s the affect of shame, the shame of grandparents’ perpetrators or victims of cruelty or weakness, the shame of cowardice of two or three generations of silent liars. The shame of cowardice is even more painstaking, as all the still alive protagonists of these family dramas realize that they remained silent and lied even when in social reality nobody anymore no longer ran any danger to speak at least “in family” the true family history, long before the communist regime fell formally in 1991. The shame of cowardice is all too frequently the greatest resistance to psychoanalysis. Reworking the subtle unthinking work of three generations is a task of over-cunning. The familial attention-diverting tricks may be too well trained. Mainly at the beginning of the analysis the patient finds easily and deftly turn the conversation out, his seemingly free associations, as the analyst approaches the difficult questions of familial non-history. These are very specific defences against the cure, if we understand psychoanalysis as “a discourse of truth and not a reparation [Wiedergutmachung] technique” (Green A., 1969).

Psychoanalysts in general are often embarrassed to speak on the subjects of social psychology, because it’s not about interpreting the experience of couch but about haphazard constructions, difficult to verify by their clinical effects. Are there really influences of the Society in the broad sense on the individual psychic apparatuses, comparable to object relations’ influences more familiar to analysts? This is why I quote Hans Enzensberger, the poet that I like because in his way he confirms my clinical intuitions. “Poets, they always knew everything”, – used to say Freud. In Russian I can mention first the famous Anna Akhmatova’s “A Poem Without Hero”, this woman, who felt so well that there are not anymore heroes in this 20th century: as the corpses of victims have no more dignity than their executioners’ bodies, alas. Do you remember the last line of the “1984” by George Orwell? It’s great, this line: “He loved Big Brother.” The whole essence of totalitarianism is that it extorts from its subjects the libidinous affects directed towards the imago of Big Brother, and towards his representatives. Poets and writers of the 20th century better than timid psychoanalysts expressed this side of psychic reality that the totalitarian regime can impose on its subjects. So, I think the good knowledge of poetry and contemporary literature is essential for cures of our patients. “How Mr Corporal should be delighted”, – until his death whispers the Mother Courage’s youngest son in the Brecht’ play, this one, who saves at the cost of his life, the chest of the second Finnish regiment: “How Mr Corporal should be delighted!”

It’s an embarrassing task for psychoanalyst, to talk the social history. Why grandfather was so silent on his wartime activities?  What were ate now the barrier troops and other paramilitary effectives of the WWII, of which the Soviet history textbooks were dead silent, and what happened to their faithful servants? Only “pure logics of the analyst” (Hartmann dixit!), who himself lived enough under the USSR can explain, that the potential compromising witnesses next day after the WWII end, they became an irksome moral burden for the utopian regime, that therefore although generously rewarded for their bloody services, the regime guardians gave them an order to be silent forever and to make silent their families on all their activities during the war under the threat of finding themselves in camps. I had to enter the details of the Stalinist regime attitudes evolution towards ethnic groups, depending on behaviours of their distant relatives abroad. As my highly educated patient of Jewish origin, reading Plutarch en regard, could not, without analyst, to discover an evident relationship between the facts why his grandparents were “good” under Stalin before the other Jews in Israel have failed to create a communist state. After the 1947 his Jewish grandparents were driven of their positions of “privileges” in KGB and in the Army. For these “fallen” communists all the cogitations on their fate immediately became taboo subjects, taboos sent to children and then. The descendant of Pontic Greeks didn’t know without analyst how to link the deportation of their grandparents from the Black Sea coast in 1949 and the failure of the communist guerrilla in Greece. Et caetera. It’s an eerie [unheimlich] work for a psychoanalyst. Without these remarks and such constructions, the patient may nor to find himself not the good books in the bookstores, neither to go to the archives, yet opened to consultations for family members since 1991. The affect of shame, once paralyzed all freedom of associations in their ancestors’ psychic apparatuses, leaving mental representations unfigured [undarstellt] and unpalatable. Among the descendants of subjects of collective traumata this very affect of shame contributed to the further deformations and massive degradations of mental representations, lacking mental traces to figurate [darstellen] these representations from. The raw material of the soul work disappeared during generations: how to think when one inherited just bits and pieces of enigmatic representations, how and what to link? What memory trace weave the web of associations, if essential memories were not at best disfigured or understated, as there were sighs, tears and teeth gnashing, inexplicable temper tantrums, associated so poorly with some material things recalling repressed memories (cinema, song, Red Army or German military tunic, or the silk stockings at the bottom of the passed-by-the-camp-grandmother’s drawer.

This shameful paralysis prevented the true thinking—the establishment of links between affects and representations—in all areas of importance for the psychoanalytic process. Of course, they all had their own psycho-sexual evolution and their Oedipus complexes, with their vicissitudes, etc., but usual technique of superficial working through the Oedipal problematic led to predictable pre-ambivalent narcissistic regressions (Bouvet M., 1954; Grunberger B., 1956) with affects of euphoria, inebriation, and elation (Grunberger B., 1956). The intensity of these affects of pseudo-healing, these affects did not correspond to any real object relations in the past, this was unpredictable.

The suppression of thinking, this suppression, the psychic heritage transmitted from one generation to another, could be felt everywhere. How? Nowhere else the truth of the Freudian concept, so difficult to translate in certain languages, of resentfulness [Nachträglichkeit] of posthumous [nachträgliches] psychic processes after the actual trauma, nowhere else this Freudian concept is so true (Freud, 1895).  Of course, as in all other families with their secrets enkystments, this inevitably increases the incestuality levels. All folds of families on themselves eroticize and make the members of these families ever crazier… The private follies (Green A., 1990) flourish in our Russian garden. The more we talk about family histories, the more memories and the very names of ancestors cease to be taboos, the less the family conversations remain limited to findings “it was daylight, it’s dark, the least the thoughts become less forbidden, since silence isn’t anymore the law, the more we learn about the physical nudity of parents in the presence of their children, up to more or less accomplished incestuous acting out. Thus, a longwise with pregenital material working through, that the theory required, I had to wage my lacework war to the many-headed dragon of learned familial forgetfulness and secrecy.

This prohibition of thinking is a challenge to the traditional psychoanalytical technique. You already noticed the unusual abundance of constructions (Freud S., 1937b) that I did to deal for these patients, with the inevitable risk of falling into the suggestion, and what is worse, in the politically engaged suggestion. I do my best to avoid the patient sinking into the “… deadly immobilization, but without putting to death, except by suicide, that we know is exceptional in these cases: this is behind this apparent masochism we may guess the fortress of a (negative) narcissistic relation, where we may design the lacking place of an object, definitively marked by its failure. Thus, there are no grief, but on the contrary, interminable resurrection of an object immortalized the one cannot separate oneself, that is impossible neither to let it die, nor to replace it once forever, at least spontaneously. The object is present here only in the form of a ghost, haunts the subject, sticking to the latte, groaning at his contact, exhaling an eternal complaint, setting an interminable accusation act, during an interminable trial, without a verdict …  (Green A., 2000). Though I am ready that “… if the analyst would answer present to this transference appeal, his intervention would be ignored, refused, partly by vengeance, partly by hopeless affirmation of this alive-dead haunted by his desire to find admitted this what had been done of him, reduced to moral abandon in a situation of helplessness with no end” (Green A., 2000).

In short, my technique with these patients is deliberately not silent, countering the deadly and eroticized silent isolation of three generations, methinks. I let me keep more silence only at the pace of the analytical process progress, with the lifting of ancestral taboos, when the analyst’s silence was not any longer an accomplice with the silence of family private madness. Though sometimes a feeling of a “deadlock seems to make this passage impossible, except to repeat again and again the trauma with and on another object. This issue, only the analyst can to offer it, while proposing himself to the analysand as an object that can accept the haphazard, the experience and its risks, including those to fail sometimes, to tumble more than one time before to get ahead, to grope sometimes, to err often, and wrapping it up, to succeed anyways to rescue from a sought-after disaster the capacity to think, despite attaining the aim by all the means”. (Green A., 2000).

Of course, we are here in the field of moral narcissism in the sense of A. Green (1969). Thus, the technical arrangements, irrespectively of the often seemingly “neurotic” psychic structure of descendants of the collective traumata subjects, are partly borrowed from within the discoveries made in other domains of psychoanalytical clinics.

From the clinics of children. The intensity of the affect of shame is the source of the main technical difficulty, well known mostly for child analysts. The libidinously invested parents’ and grandparents’ representations are too strongly linked with the narcissistically invested self-representations of the subject, young or adult. In the children and adolescents’ clinics, any criticism of the parental Imagines is the last thing to do (Chabert C., 1994). Here we treat adults badly needing separation with their parental families, and not children, but even for adult narcissism it pains too much if the entire ancestral lines are put into the question, and sometimes it’s the case with both maternal and paternal lines. Therefore, the maximal respect to the patient’s narcissism coupled with representations of ancestors in his soul is de rigueur.

Although, to avoid the above-mentioned narcissistic regression (sometimes – endless, but more often – leading to bitter disillusion), earlier or later, I always dare to follow the Green’s (1969) general guidelines for the treatment of the moral narcissism. I do not try transference interpretations of patients, while they are still dressed in narcissistic armour. I do not try otherwise harmless resignation (Grunberger B., 1956) which is in these cases is a subtle form of Penelope’s work of unbinding already so lacking mental links. I know that our time has its own political correctness when the adepts of passionate sadomasochist relations – hatredloving [hainamoration] (Lacan J., 1973) – in transference multiply their ranks. Then I try ever less “the least guilt-inducing variant of goodness … pouring the first jet into the Danaids’’ barrel” (Green A., 1969). Thus, I resolve to pronounce key words, which here are: shame, honour, dishonour, cowardice, and treason. I know that the worst frustration the patient can feel on analysis is to be not understood (Bouvet M., 1954). “As cruel as it can be to hear the truth, it is less than the iron yoke in which the patient feels imprisoned” (Green A., 1969).

From the clinics of borderline patients. This is attention to the “champ [chant] de la parole” (Lacan J., 1953), but mostly in the sense of César and Sara Botella (1988) “at the limit of technical possibilities of the [psychoanalytical] method”, when the analyst’s attention is paid more to the prosody of speech, to the words intonation, than to their discourse explicit content, and interpretation is given immediately, while his words intonation is still stocked in patient’s short-time memory. Inventiveness is required. To deal with the subject’s psychological legacy of collective traumata the psychoanalyst deliberately plays a totally fictional character of the utopian imagination frames, choosing during the sessions to speak the military and legal vocabulary styled the Stalin era ideological comics. Thus, the psychoanalyst rightfully depicts the sessions as patient’s dealing with the “class enemy” and with the “agent of the international bourgeoisie”, that so many Soviet propaganda posters warned against. The psychoanalytical adventure becomes a “defection”, a “passage to the enemy side”, a “high treason, deserving a capital punishment”. The “guilty” of being analysed patient risks to be “struck by the heavy penalty of the Soviet law, by the general hatred and contempt of the working people”. (What are the effects of these obsolete formulae? People on the couch tremble of previous generations’ fear with whole their body!) The psychoanalyst is, therefore, “the mercenary of the imperialist enemy”, with whom the “offender” (patient) maintains a “criminal commerce”. All these references to out-dated vocabulary of the bygone era provide places to sudden comings out of affects, leaving defences, such as serious denials, and falling resistances, often with affective vocalizations, outbursts of tears or of laughers. I always take risks: later some patients said to live moments of almost irresistible envy to get out of there and never come back. I know too well that the Over-I [Über-Ich] I deal here with is really „obscene and fierce“ (Lacan J., 1955); and never such an instance would be the analyst’s ally. I know that I surreptitiously use all my artfulness to undermine the psychic power of this “sworn voice” [« grosse voix »] (Lacan J., 1958-60), as it is not the mostly father-inherited instance, that Freud conceived in his mind, this is not the voice that sends the subject constantly back to the Father’s Law of Deuteronomy, to the Law of interdiction of incest and human sacrifice. Here I must admit that it is not by chance, that I use all the long my text the masculine pronouns to designate my patients. I have an impression that Russian women managed to pass the 20th century ordeals with more dignity than Russian man. Women were more seldom enslaved as the Utopian State working cattle than men; the enslaved men could be pitied by their women, but not anymore respected. Women were very rare at the Party or KGB important positions; even if they profited indirectly from their men’s thus acquired advantages, they secretly despised those men who “fluctuated with the Party line” (folk joke). And children felt the feelings their mothers nurtured unconsciously during three generations towards their fathers and all Russian men in general. Even these men who overtly combatted communism and failed, those men, whom Marina Tsvetaeva tried to poetize in her “White Swans”, they were losers. When Tsvetaeva returned from Paris in the “new Russia” only to discover, that the Soviet man whom she fell in love in Paris was a KGB agent, she, one of the greatest Russian poets of the 20th century, she had chosen to die. When having had hanging herself, whether did she feel any respect to all these men of her life, even to her “white swans”? I doubt. So, I feel that it is a much more difficult task for Russian men to help themselves with the traumatic sequelae: to find a father figure to identify with, and to gain a respect of their women and children. I mean it is much more difficult a task for Russian men than for Russian women. To gain a respect to himself, whose father and grandfather were in the most cases despised, it is harder task than just to gain money.

From the clinics of psychoses. Interpretation of the thought paradoxes and working through the sublime delights of familial Incestuousity of these families, too much and for too long united by the same shameful suppression. Here we usually must deal with badly structured transference, with an uncertain mixture of love and hatred. I follow rather the advice of André Green and prefer the analysis of the hateful aspects of such a transference. This hateful transference is manifested by “forgetfulness”: of analyst’s constructions, of patient’s once eager agreement with these constructions, of his own recollections, even of his own memories of yesterday. This hatred may be translated into “scholarly gossip” on the “lateral” topics or in devaluation of the analytical work of the past, and of affects that he experienced upon the time: “It was nothing.” The incestuousity of the “elected” in their masochistic suffering and in their sadistic enjoyment families, the utmost eroticized secret, the final common pathway of so many pathologies, forced me to talk about the family in terms of the sacred marriage of the gods (hagiogamia), all being each other’s sisters, brothers, mothers and fathers, sons, and daughters. It’s just the time to talk about Isis and Osiris, Cybele, and Adonis. “The gods’ deaths and rebirths” of pagan religions, the necessity of human sacrifices, voluntary and involuntary. It’s time to talk of enjoyments of self-castration before the Idol of the Mother-Goddess in the ancient Babylon downtown. We make fire of any wood to move forward the thinking process, to promote figuration [Darstellbarkeit] of traumatic representations (Botella C&S., 1983), to bring the patient out of the deadly, dumbfounding, frightening and incestuous conspiracy of their parental silent families.

What about the analyst’s difficulties, his need for deep knowledge (and not only in psychoanalytical theory), “his need of flexibility and firmness in his setting, of active receptivity, of courage, of impeccable reliability, of inventiveness in the face of unusual, paradoxical and paralyzing functioning of patient’s soul”, everybody may read this elsewhere (Green A., 2006). ”The analyst must be an artisan of the separation with the patient … [His] interpretive attitude can at times permit access to the idealization-persecution problem and can thereby uncover what is lurking in the persecution implicit beneath the façade of idealization. Protection from persecuting (on the part of the object and suffered by the I [Ich]; on the part of the I [Ich] and suffered by the object is, at the same time, an escape from persecution in a camouflaged form. Through this the object-tie …  can be reconstituted. Then the I’s [Ich] reproaches concerning the object and the object’s reproaches concerning the I [Ich]. Recourse to narcissistic sufficiency can be accounted for only by the deficiency of the object, whether this deficiency was real…” (Green A., 1969). Oh, how real they were, those objects’ insufficiencies during the last century.

And after the object and ambivalent ties with Oedipal objects are established, we may sometimes pass to the happier final of analysis where the puzzle of patient’s familial history and of his ancestors’ passions (drives) creatively assemble with his own wishes and desires (drives), without threatening anymore patient’s narcissism, and nothing and nobody lure him anymore with ultimate enjoyments of the Death drive. This reverie-analysis, where not only the analyst hears, but the analysand begins to hear his analyst, answering with new associations, always towards Oedipus – repression – returning of the repressed and whereas in the last, the most secret hall of the Villa of Mysteries always appears the theme of the phallus as a moment of dives fusion [Triebmischung] under the genital primacy. But this is already another dramaturgy, when the psychic negativity is forever relegated to its supporting rôle in the play of the patient’s life. In this drama the patient’s I [Ich] since always comes to pass further there, where was his It [Es]: “O viva morte, o dilectoso male, come puoi tanto in me s’io nol consento?”


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    The article was initially presented as a conference at the Fourth National Congress for Social Psychiatry in Moscow City-Hall, on December 12th, 2011.


The “Negativity Internalized” And The “Negativity Perverse”: The Aftermath Traumata Experienced by Their Ancestors in The Souls of Contemporary Russians.

Paul V. Katchalov, Serbsky Institute, Moscow, Russia. 

André Green (2010) proposed an original concept of two psychic “negativities”: an “internalized” and another “perverse” in the offspring of 20th century collective traumatisms. In the 1917-53 generation (grandparents) the survived traumatism was the real threat of physical death in permanent terror campaigns. In the 1953-91 generation (fathers) the experienced traumatism was mostly narcissistic threat of social inanity. Clinical analyst in nowadays Russia deals with both forms of psychic negativity; massive suppression of mental representations and affects with subsequent distortions of secondary thought processes are the major complications of such a transgenerational transmission. “Internalized negativity” in after-1985 generation (grandchildren) is expressed in forgetfulness, repetitive social failures, and inability to use a chance and their own abilities, clear theme of self-punishment, where grandchildren assume the sins of forefathers. “Perverse negativity” is all in extensive parental family secrecy and rare cynicism enforced by violence and humiliation of the younger, with patients’ habitual lies; in envious and hating transference where the “Other” is blamed for failing to suffer for and instead of analysands. Forgotten memories of family secrets appear on analysis in a strange form of “comedy secrets”: the traces of suppressed memories and affects of the three generations are constantly enlivened from the outside whether it’s fiction, media, folk anecdotes and even all the 75 history textbooks authorized by the Ministry of Education. Whoever counts, the expense of the collective violence victims in the 20th century comes to tens of millions. That is, in the grandfathers’ generations of contemporary Russian citizens each was either a victim or an executioner, or accomplice to “mass-form terror” (Lenin’s formula). In the fathers’ generation it was all about narcissistic traumata in the case of “politically wrong” filling in formularies, filling up innumerable “personal cases”, where the lies about the family history and their relatives had to be endlessly repeated and signed with his own hand for the sake of “social success”. Massive suppressions of secondary thinking process clinically make the patients from the grandchildren generation to start the cure with unclear demand for it.  Abortive monosymptoms or with vague complaints soon stumbles with analysis of these prohibitions on understanding of transgenerational psychic transmission. The resistance varies from false feeblemindedness to exquisite intellectual nonsense misunderstandings “what do we do about”. The inner work of the primary thought process is underway, and the façade of banal symptoms breaks in the form of brief persecutory delusion, of dangerous acting out, then in the sudden somatization. Affects of shame for cowardice and meanness of the previous two generations are the main obstacles to psychoanalysis, understood as a “discourse of truth” (Green, 1969). Interpreting the utterings sounds more than the formal sense of speech, “at the limit of technical possibilities of the method” (Botella, 1988), an unusually wide resorting to “constructions in analysis” (Freud, 1937), a Russian early 21st century analyst have also be a historian, willing to transform the patient’s “empty speech” in his “full speech” (Lacan, 1977), thus giving his soul a bit of true being (health).


Die „Negativität verinnerlicht“ und die „Negativität pervers“: die Nachwirkungen Traumata von ihren Vorfahren in den Seelen der zeitgenössischen Russen erlebt.

Paul V. Katchalov, Serbsky-Institut, Moskau, Rußland.

André Green (2010) vorgeschlagen, ein originelles Konzept aus zwei psychische “Negativität”: ein „verinnerlicht“ und andere „perverse“ bei den Nachkommen des 20. Jahrhunderts kollektiven Traumata. In der 1917-53 Generation (Großeltern) das überlebte Trauma war die reale Bedrohung der körperliche Tod in ständigem Terror-Kampagnen. In der 1953-91 Generation (Väter) den erfahrenen Traumata war vor allem narzißtische Gefahr der sozialen Nichtigkeit. Klinische Analytiker in Rußland heute befaßt sich mit beiden Formen der psychischen Negativität, einer massiven Unterdrückung der seelischen Vorstellungen und wirkt mit anschließenden Verzerrungen der sekundären Denkprozesse sind die wichtigsten Komplikationen eines solchen generationsübergreifenden Übertragung. „Verinnerlicht Negativität“ in nach-1985-Generation (Enkel) ist in Vergessenheit, sich wiederholende soziale Mißerfolge, und die Unfähigkeit, eine Chance und die eigenen Fähigkeiten, klares Thema der Selbstbestrafung, verwenden, wo Enkeln die Sünden der Vorfahren übernehmen, ausgedrückt. „Perverse Negativität“ ist alles in umfangreichen elterlichen Familie Geheimhaltung und seltenen Zynismus von Gewalt und Demütigung der Jüngeren durchgesetzt, mit der Patienten gewöhnlichen liegt, in Neid und Haß Übertragung, wo die „Andere“ ist wegen ihres Fallissements, leiden verantwortlich gemacht und statt Analysanden. Vergessene Erinnerungen der Familiengeheimnisse scheinen sich auf die Analyse in einer seltsamen Gestalt des „Komödiengeheimnisse“: die Spuren der unterdrückten Erinnerungen und Affekte der drei Generationen sind ständig von außen belebt, ob es Fiktion, Medien-, Folk-Anekdoten und sogar alle 75 Geschichtsbücher genehmigt durch das Ministerium für Bildung. Wer zählt, kommt auf Kosten der Opfer kollektiver Gewalt im 20. Jahrhundert in zweistelliger Millionenhöhe. Das heißt, in die Großväter Generationen der zeitgenössischen russischen Bürger jeweils entweder ein Opfer oder Henker oder Komplize den „massenforme Terror“ (Lenin-Formel) wurde. In der Väter-Generation ging es um narzißtische Traumata im Fall von „politisch inkorrekt“ Anfüllen in Formelsammlungen, füllt sich unzählige „persönlichen Fälle“, wo die Lügen über die Geschichte der Familie und ihre Verwandten hatten sich endlos wiederholt werden und unterzeichnete mit seiner eigenen Hand im Interesse der „sozialen Erfolg“. Massiver Unterdrückungen von sekundären Denkprozeß klinisch machen die Patienten aus der Enkel-Generation, um die Heilung mit unklarer Nachfrage danach beginnen. Gescheiterter Monosymptoms oder mit vagen Beschwerden bald stolpert mit der Analyse dieser Verbote auf das Verständnis der generationsübergreifenden psychische Übertragung. Der Widerstand ist von falschem Schwachsinn bis hin zu exquisiten geistigen Unsinn Mißverständnisse, „was machen wir mit“. Die innere Arbeit der primären Denkprozeß ist im Gange und die Façade des banalen Symptomen Pausen: in Form von kleinem Verfolgungswahn, gefährliches Agieren, dann in die plötzliche Somatisierung. Wirkt sich der Schande für Feigheit und Gemeinheit der beiden vorangegangenen Generationen sind die Haupthindernisse für die Psychoanalyse als „Gerede der Wahrheit“ (Green, 1969) verstanden. Die Deutung der Aussprüche hört mehr als den formalen Sinn der Rede, „an der Grenze der technischen Möglichkeiten der Methode“ (Botella, 1988), ein ungewöhnlich breiter Rückgriff auf „Konstruktionen in der Analyse“ (Freud, 1937), ein russischer Anfang des 21. Jahrhunderts Analysten haben auch ein Historiker, bereit, den Patienten „leere Reden“ in seinem „vollen Rede“ (Lacan, 1977) zu verwandeln und damit gibt seine Seele ein bißchen wahres Wesen (Gesundheit) sein.

In: Dynamische Psychiatrie. Dynamic Psychiatry. Pinel Verlag. Berlin. Vol. 46. Jahrgang 2013, 3-4, Nr. 257-258. S. 135-150.