The concept of trauma in psychoanalysis has suffered from overuse and inconsistent use. A re-view of Freud’s writings beginning with the Project of 1895 indicates that from the perspective of the impact upon psychic processes, Freud held a more consistent view of the concept that, if recognized, can help avoid the often fruitless etiological debates of internal versus external cause, intrinsic (drive) versus extrinsic (reality) factors, etc. What is more helpful from a clinical per-spective is to view the challenges that trauma-inducing circumstances might pose for an individu-al, consider each individual’s subjective mode of experiencing and responding to those challenges and take into account the supports offered by the specific familial, social or cultural surround. Each set of experiences that will be qualified as "trauma" that any of us undergoes will to some extent be understood and integrated into our particular subjectivities according to our unique, sub-jective organizations of self, understandings of and position in the world.
Keywords: Trauma; Psychoanalytic process; Representation; Figurability; Repetition compulsion