Hilda Catz
curriculum

46th Psychoanalytic Congress
Chicago July 2009

Non-speaking as a defense against separation ansiety
(from the analysis of a four-year-old elective mutistic girl)
By Angelika Staehle

Commentary by Hilda Catz

I will present Angelika Staehle’s paper "Non-speaking as a defense against separation anxiety (from the analysis of a four-year-old elective mutistic girl)".To begin with, I would like to highlight Angelika Stahele’s introduction written in French, for I consider it to be the crux of this work. She mentions Pontalis words "Language is loss... word and writing are relatives, making loss turn into absence".
I reckon that this statement stands for our daily work with patients. Moreover, in the same book, Pontalis points out that according to Freud, words were "magic at the beginning" and therapy is like "slow magic".
Angelika’s paper develops this magic throughout her work concerning the defence against separation anxiety with this mutistic girl.



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