Monday May 16, 2022

Ludovica Grassi - Music, Silence and Psychoanalysis

A few musical passages serve as examples of how music is a basic component of psychic life and unconscious functioning since the earliest sensorial experiences in utero.  Both music and the psyche work through similar mechanisms such as repetition, imitation, variation (transformation), intimacy and the work of mourning, of the negative and of nostalgia. Silence and absence, as well as time and temporality, are key elements both in music and in symbolization and subjectivation processes.

Viewing music as a primal and inherent characteristic of psychic structure and functioning allows both a better understanding of somato-psychic development and a musically informed psychoanalytic listening. 


Ludovica Grassi is a child neuro-psychiatrist, a full member of the Italian Society of Psychoanalysis, a qualified expert in child and adolescent psychoanalysis, and a psychoanalyst of couples and families. She is currently Treasurer of the Italian Psychoanalytic Society. Her main scholarly interests are infant psychoanalysis, ethno-psychoanalysis, and the role of music in psychic development. She has written on these topics as well as on individual, couple and family psychoanalysis. Her book The Sound of the Unconscious: Psychoanalysis as Music was published by IPA in June 2021.


Link to the paper



This episode is available also in Italian 



This podcast series, published by the International Psychoanalytical Association, is part of the activities of the IPA Communication Committee and is produced by the IPA Podcast Editorial Team. Head of the Podcast Editorial Team is Gaetano Pellegrini.

Editing and Post-Production: Massimiliano Guerrieri

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