chapter  4
Aesthetics and psychoanalysis
Pages 19

Psychoanalytic writing on art has been mostly fashioned from a handful of concepts: a description of the actions of a mental apparatus in terms of the primary process, regression, unconscious, and related topics of psychosexual development, trauma, and self-representation. The three concepts the unconscious, primary process, and regression remain central pillars of psychoanalytic writing on art and aesthetics. More recent psychoanalytic efforts on aesthetics have sometimes focused on the hypothesis that psychoanalysis itself is an aesthetic process and an aesthetic experience for patient and analyst alike. Music therapy and dance therapy are well-known clinical pathways in their own right. Music therapists speak of developing a musical relationship with their child patients. The neuroscience has already explained that there must be a common relationship between psychological illnesses of the self and a loss of aesthetic competence. Although such a loss can take place in response to trauma or depression is often a non-specific factor that can be engaged by the therapist.