Jacqueline Amati Mehler has made an important contribution to psychoanalysis in the realm of language and symbolization. Language lies at the heart of human psychic development. Dr. Amati Mehler has explored the “psycho-archaeology” of language, embedded in early affect and psychosensory experiences related to primary object relationships and primary processes. Such early experiences condition the significance of the words and the organization of discourse within the vicissitudes of the development of the symbolic function, implying the transition from concrete to abstract, from bodily to mental, and the bonding of thing presentations to word presentations.
Her books include, in Italian, La Babele Dell’inconscio: Lingua Madre E Lingue Straniere Nella Dimensione Psicoanalitica (1990) and, in English, The Babel of the Unconscious: Mother Tongue and Foreign Languages in the Psychoanalytic Dimension