Après-coup and avant-coup: death and the primal scene - Being fully and creatively alive depends on giving meaning to present experience in the light of the past (Winicott’s "creative apperception") and at the same time rearticulating the past in the light of subsequent experience (après-coup). This freedom of psychic movement up and down a life should leave the present moment always open to the unheimlich. The same process needs also to extend into the future. A gaze forward from the present, and an imaginative gaze backward to it from the future, are the equivalent, with time’s arrow reversed, of creative apperception and après-coup in relation to the past. The Author proposes the name of dynamic avant-coup, or Vorträglichkeit for this capacity to keep reconfiguring in fresh ways one’s availability to the future, The present moment is created by the encounter between après-coup and avant-coup and is a point of intersection between time and timelessness. It punctuates an expanse boundaried by the primal scene and death. These two are always present, at some level, in the analytic encounter. A clinical example illustrates the presence of these themes beneath the conscious surface of the analytic work.
Parole chiave: Vitalità, après-coup, compiacenza, appercezione creativa, morte, memoria, scena primaria, perturbante
Key words: Aliveness, après-coup, compliance, creative apperception, death, memory, primal scene, uncanny