This book comprises a selection of papers initially presented as a series of lectures organised by the Psychoanalytic Forum of the British Psychoanalytical Society. The aims of these lectures was to revisit Freud's key papers 'On Narcissism' (1914) and 'Mourning and Melancholia' (1917), and to look at how they are used in today's thinking about the different stages of life. The contributions, by well known clinicians and theoreticians in their respective fields, capture certain important themes which were put together with two main incentives in mind: firstly, to consider that mourning, depression and narcissism constitute the basic fabric of psychoanalytic theorizing. Secondly, the centrality of these concepts not only illustrate a particular way of understanding mental functioning but, by locating them at different stages of the individual development, offers a wider, more effective and at times different perspective.

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