Différence entre autisme et « psychose infantile » :
déficits d'unité vs d'identité de la situation ?

Abstract : Although today invisible and dilute into the “autistic spectrum”, difference between Kanner's
autism and “infantile psychosis” (or “préspsychose”) is however clinically certified and regular.
Therefore it seems necessary, irrespective of the question of etiology, to understand the
opposition between these two disorders and to state more precisely their respective and specific
manifestations. From the analogy with two separate kinds of agnosia, we present here in
this first step the assumption that they consist in disorders of, respectively, unity and identity
of the lived situation (corporal and environmental).
Unity's disorder in autism seems to impair the delimitation of experiential hazards and shows
itself in “negative” (or deficient) symptom of isolation ; preservation or identity shows itself
in “positive” (or compensatory) symptom of sameness, meaning excessive identity. Event,
internal or external, is not considered in its complexity or cohesiveness but only in its coherence.
In “infantile psychosis”, inversely, the disorder impairs the discrimination of experiential variations
and shows itself in “negative” symptom of confusion ; preservation of unity shows
itself, in the other hand, positively, in invasion and fusion / fragmentation, meaning excessive
unity. The situation is not considered this time like homogeneous, coherent, but only in his
Clinical and critical discussion of this hypothesis is supported on analogous propositions of
authors of different theoretical approachs, like M. Mahler, F. Tustin, U. Frith and, particularly,
M. Lemay : his recent proposition of respective disorder of integration and modulation
seems to be close to our.
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Submitted on : Monday, December 1, 2008 - 6:21:50 PM
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Clément de Guibert, Laurence Beaud. Différence entre autisme et « psychose infantile » :
déficits d'unité vs d'identité de la situation ?. La psychiatrie de l'enfant, Paris : Presses Universitaires de France, 2005, 2 (48), pp.391-423. ⟨halshs-00343521⟩



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