Chapter

The Diffusion of Psychoanalysis under Conditions of Political Authoritarianism: The Case of Argentina, 1960s and 1970s<sup>1</sup>

Mariano Ben Plotkin

in Psychoanalysis and Politics

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780199744664
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199932863 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199744664.003.0027
The Diffusion of Psychoanalysis under Conditions of Political Authoritarianism: The Case of Argentina, 1960s and 1970s1

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Mariano Ben Plotkin examines the development of a psychoanalytic culture in Argentina under authoritarian regimes of the 1960s and 1970s. He makes the case that the strong impact of psychoanalysis in the Argentine culture is the result of an historical process that saw the convergence of a complex set of cultural, political, and social factors that laid the conditions for multiple, and sometimes incompatible, appropriations of the Freudian system. Plotkin demonstrates the varieties of ways in which psychoanalysis was employed by people and groups holding various positions in the political spectrum. He evidences the place of psychoanalysis in the actions of the intellectual left, as well as those by less-politicized practitioners unconnected to the left, but interested in “modern” and “nonsubversive” approaches to understanding the world. Furthermore, he shows that the dictatorships that ruled the country in the 1960s and 1970s also appropriated some segments of the psychoanalytic discourse for their own purposes.

Keywords: Argentina; modernity; left; dictatorship; coup; Mental health and public hospitals; therapeutic communities

Chapter.  12047 words. 

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