Webinar on l’après-coup

On Sunday 10th December 2017, eminent psychoanalysts Bernard Chervet and Dominique Scarfone invited members of the IPA to take part in a discussion on ‘l’après-coup’ during a lively webinar hosted by the IPA.

Nachträglichkeit in Freud’s texts, also known as l’après-coup in French Psychoanalysis or deferred action as translated by James Strachey (The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud), is the main concept of the psychoanalytical theory of sexuality, causality, temporality, memory and the development of trauma. The concept is a perfect frame in which to explore cultural psychoanalytic differences and to bridge the gaps between psychoanalytic cultures.

Developments between North American and French Psychoanalysts on ‘après-coup’ have brought up many questions regarding its temporal, topographical and economic aspects.

  • About temporal regression that goes from a recent scene to a past scene in a retrogressive pathway and a process of remembering.
  • About the re-activation or re-interpretation of an earlier experience or memory that cannot be assimilated at the time of its occurrence, usually because of too early or deficit or aberration in maturational or developmental function.
  • About the couple seduction / fantasy of seduction, early unmemorable experiences, the quality of memories and the impact of maternal messages.
  • About the change in the economic nature of primary investment and the role of the superego in the advent of the ‘après-coup’.

Bernard Chervet – Training Analyst at Paris Psychoanalytical Society (SPP), former SPP President and author of a keynote report on ‘après-coup’ (2009), Scientific Director of the CPLF (French Language Psychoanalyst’s Congress).

Dominique Scarfone – Training Analyst at Montreal Psychoanalytic Society (MPS), Professor at Montreal University, author of a keynote report on ‘actual’ (2014), Associate Editor of the International Journal of Psychoanalysis.


If you were unable to join the live session, or would like to watch again, you can do so here: