Infantile Anxiety-Situations Reflected in a Work of Art and in the Creative Impulse : 1929 : Melanie Klein

by Julia Evans on January 1, 1929


p227-235 of  Contributions to psycho-analysis 1921-1949, Melanie Klein: edited by Ernest Jones : No 44 of The International Psycho-Analytical Library : The Hogarth Press : 1948

Available at /authors by date or authors a-z

Referenced by Jacques Lacan

in Seminar VII: Session of 27th January 1960: p115 of Dennis Porter’s translation

Chapter IX: On creation ex nihilo : I will take up my discussion of the function I attribute to the Thing in the definition of sublimation with an amusing anecdote.

After leaving you the other day, I was conscious-stricken as I often am when I feel that I haven’t exhausted the bibliography on a subject I am treating, and I looked up that very afternoon two articles by Melanie Klein that are referred to by Glover. They have been collected in ‘Contributions to Psychoanalysis’.

The first of the articles, “Infant Analysis,” of 1923, contains some very important things on sublimation and on the secondary phenomenon of inhibition – that is to say, on how, in Klein’s conception, functions in the child that are sufficiently libidinalized through sublimation are subsequently subjected to an effect of inhibition.

I am not going to spend time on this, for it is to the very conception of sublimation that I want to draw your attention; all the misunderstandings that follow derive from the lack of insight into this problem.

It was the second, 1929 article, entitled “Infantile Anxiety Situations Reflected in a Work of Art and in the Creative Impulse”, that I regretted not having looked at. It is short, but as sometimes happens, it gave me the satisfaction of fitting my purposes like a glove.

For more of the text, see Seminar VII: The ethics of psychoanalysis: 1959-1960: from 18th November 1959 : Jacques Lacan or here  &

Protecting the Child from the Family Delusion : 8th November 2008 (Barcelona) : Éric Laurent or here

Quoted by other authors

The Dread of Women: Observations on a Specific Difference in the Dread felt by Men and Women Respectively for the Opposite Sex : 1932 : Karen Horney  or here


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Julia Evans

Practicing Lacanian Psychoanalyst, Earl’s Court, London

Further texts

By Melanie Klein here

Of the clinic : here

Reading Seminar VII : here

Lacanian Transmission : here

Some Lacanian History : here

Topology : here

From LW working groups : here

By Sigmund Freud here

Notes on texts by Sigmund Freud : here

By Jacques Lacan here

Notes on texts by Jacques Lacan here

By Julia Evans here