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Self-envy is a psychoanalytic term coined by Rafael López-Corvo who sustains that it is crucial for the understanding of disorders of the self that are manifested in addictions, acting out, and inhibition of creativity. This concept is based on the use of object relations theory, that many psychoanalysts view as a fundamental instrument for examining the architecture of the internal world that describes behavior as influenced by the multiple interactions of early representations of self and other that operate in our inner selves. Self-envy is produced by 'child part self-objects', self representations from early development that remain split off from the self and harbor destructive and envious feelings toward the creative aspects of the self and results from direct aggressive attacks by these childhood self-objects against the part of the self identified with a harmonious mother-father or parent-sibling relationship. The internal dynamics of Self-envy cause intense unconscious conflict, dissociation, and disturbances of the self, all of which underlie severe psychopathologies, such as repetitive destructive behavior, and even the living of seemingly normal but constricted lives. López-Corvo believes that the psychoanalytic interpretation of such patients, for whom one part of the self is ruthlessly pitted against another, should address directly the phenomenon of a war within the internal self.

Articles and books on Self-envy

  • Avi Berman Self-envy and the concealment of inner resources.
  • Elizabeth Bott Spillius Self-Envy: Therapy and the Divided Inner World (Review)
  • Rafael E. López-Corvo About Interpretation of Self-Envy
  • Rafael E. López-Corvo Self-Envy, Therapy and the Divided Inner World, Jason Aronson, New York, 1994
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Self-envy". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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