The Psychogenesis of the Self and the Emergence of Ethical Relatedness: Klein in Light of Merleau-Ponty

Brent Dean Robbins, Jessie Goicoechea
2005 Journal of Theoretical and Philosphical Psychology  
This paper presents a theory of the emergence of ethical relatedness, which is developed through a synthetic reading of the developmental theories of Melanie Klein and Maurice Merleau-Ponty. Klein's theory of the paranoidschizoid and depressive positions are found to roughly parallel Merleau-Ponty's distinction between the "lived" and the "symbolic." With the additional contributions of Thomas Ogden and Martin C. Dillon, the theories of Klein and Merleau-Ponty are refined to accommodate the
more » ... accommodate the insights of each developmental perspective. Implications of the paper's analysis include: Opportunities to clarify key concepts in object relations theory, including projective identification; insight into the development of selfconscious emotions such as shame, guilt, embarrassment and gratitude; the articulation of a phenomenologically oriented object relations perspective which allows for human agency and therefore genuine altruism and compassion; and, finally, a validation of previous assertions that theory cannot and should not be meaningfully distinguished from ethics. \\server05\productn\T\THE\25-2\THE205.txt unknown Seq: 2 16-JUN-06
doi:10.1037/h0091259 fatcat:m7r5vqyzgnecbjjihuziuhhaxy