The essential disorder underlying schizophrenia and schizophrenic thought : 1927 : Eugene Minkowski

by Julia Evans on January 1, 1927

Originally published as:

Chapter 2, ‘Le trouble essentiel de la schizophrénie et la pensée schizophrénique’, of La Schizophrénie : Published Payot: Paris: 1927

Translation into English of Chapter 2

The essential disorder underlying schizophrenia and schizophrenic thought : 1927 : Eugene Minkowski

Available here

P188-212 of The Clinical Roots of the Schizophrenia Concept : 28th November 1986 : John Cutting & Michael Shepherd (Editors & Authors) :

Information here

Eugene Minkowski (c. 1890-1972)

Quoted from ‘The Clinical Roots of the Schizophrenia Concept’

Eugene Minkowski was born of Jewish parents in St Petersburg, went to school in Warsaw and studied medicine in Munich. He was persuaded to take up psychiatry by his wife, who was also to become a psychiatrist, and visited Bleuler in Zurich just before the First World War. He enlisted as a volunteer in the French army in 1915 and became a battalion medical officer, serving with bravery at Verdun, the Somme and the Aisne. He was awarded the honour of ‘Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur’ at the end of the war. He loved France and settled down in Paris after the war. He never had an official post in a hospital but was highly regarded as a clinician and an academic by all who knew him. During the Second World War he was persecuted because of his Jewish status.

Minkowski’s importance as a writer on the theoretical aspects of schizophrenia is still underestimated. He was much influenced by the philosopher Bergson, as well as by Bleuler, and tried to combine the philosophical and the clinical approaches. The following extract is taken from his book on schizophrenia, in which he tries to understand the nature of the condition, particularly the disorder of thinking, incorporating both Bergson’s and Bleuler’s ideas.

Quoted by Jacques Lacan :

Lacan’s case of Aimée:1932,

‘The Case of Aimée, or Self-punitive Paranoia’: Jacques Lacan: 1932 :

Information and availability here

Further texts

By Eugene Minkowski here

By Jacques Lacan : here

By John Cutting here

By Michael Shepherd here

Notes on texts by Jacques Lacan here

Case studies here

Of the clinic here

Lacanian History here

On Ordinary Psychosis : here