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John Borneman

The Ego and the Id (1923: 29), for example, Freud explicitly insisted on the permanent traces left by losses, a point Laplanche (1999) has made central to his work on Otherness. Freud conceptualised the healthy ego not merely as an autonomous object free to love but as always ‘a precipitate of abandoned object-cathexes’. In short, our losses remain with us as accumulated internal objects, which, in the case of melancholia, lead to an identification with the dead. For the melancholic, the lost person is then ‘transformed into 240 John Borneman an ego-loss’ (Freud

in Governing the dead
Open Access (free)
John Robert Keller

been helpful in developing parts of this section: Laplanche and Pontalis, 1988; Moore and Fine, 1990, 1995; Bacal and Newman, 1990; Summers, 1994; Hinshelwood, 1991; and Rycroft, 1988. 2 Early in her career Klein suggested, following Freud, that the ego’s first act was to deflect outwards (project) the death instinct, and to subsequently face the difficulties of introjecting a now poisoned and dangerous world. The death instinct is a highly problematic concept in psychoanalysis, but is one that could be applied to Beckett’s work. I have tended not to speak of it in

in Samuel Beckett and the primacy of love