17 Pages

Unconscious Phantasy, Identification, and Projection in the Creative Writer

ByJoseph Sandler, Anne-Marie Sandler

Sigmund Freud's "Creative Writers and Day-dreaming" is a remarkable piece of work, particularly when we consider that it was written less than eight years after the publication of The Interpretation of Dreams in 1900. In this paper, Freud traces a similarity between the small child's play and creative writing. Like the writer, the child at play "creates a world of his own, or, rather, re-arranges the things of his world in a new way which pleases him". It is only because the child prefers to link his imagined objects and situations to things he can see and handle that play can be differentiated from daydreaming. Both the Preconscious and the Unconscious systems of the topographical model share the quality of being, descriptively speaking, unconscious. Phantasies in the past unconscious are those that are believed to occur in the first years of life and that can be thought of as existing behind the so-called repression barrier.