Synaesthesia and Multilingualism

Journal title PSICOANALISI
Author/s Simona Argentieri
Publishing Year 2011 Issue 2011/1
Language Italian Pages 12 P. 51-62 File size 379 KB
DOI 10.3280/PSI2011-001005
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The Author confronts the issue of the relationship between multilingualism and synesthesias, that is, secondary sensations that are activated as a result of a primary sensory register. Starting from clinical experience, compared with literary evidence, she notices how the synesthetic interlacing of sounds, images and feelings rises to full power in multilingual people, in various endless combinations. Synaesthesia allows both to regress, to go back to the source, recovering the past, and to deeply root in foreign languages, giving way to new emotional experiences, not just to words, but also to the constituent elements of language as the letters of the alphabet... While studying aphasia, Freud had already noticed that the associative system of representations has a capacity of extension. Not only the same words in different languages are loaded with different affects, but in polyglots there are "superassociations", double systems of word representations, sometimes with a relatively independent functioning, sometimes, on the contrary, with a communicating vessels functioning. Synesthesia is a phenomenon at the edge of many disciplines, but it would be useful to set up a psychoanalytical vertex of observation, starting from the distinction between the concept of representations and amodal perception, closely related but not overlapping.

Keywords: Synaestesia, Representations, Sensoriality, Affects, Protofantasies, Associative net, Metaphor

Simona Argentieri, Sinestesie e multilinguismo in "PSICOANALISI" 1/2011, pp 51-62, DOI: 10.3280/PSI2011-001005