This article proposes the principal themes of the psychoanalysis of the adolescent dealt with in the book L’adolescente. Una prospettiva psicoanalitica. This book, was published by a group of collaborators who for many years accompanied Amaldo Novelletto in his clinical and theoretical study of the adolescent psyche. The editors’ wish is that this book might bring something new at a time when adolescence is an area of research, stimulation, revisitation and innovation in psychoanalytical study.
The condition of young adulthood appears to be a structural necessity in the human being’s process of becoming. This time of life is distinct from both adolescence and so-called adult maturity. The author explores the factors that differentiate the specific nature of the intrapsychic, interpersonal and psychical economy of the young adult.
The second problematic consists of finding out if there is enough containing function to make possible the working-through of primitive sufferings that have not yet been elaborated and open the way to decisive introjections.
The third concerns the assimilation of identifications to identifying models, now de-sexualized enough (apprentice identification), an assimilation which can take place « without too much thought », and which helps reinforce the subconscious.
The fourth and last problematic, the relation with the body of the parents, can be clearly recognized, in view of the reduction of incestuous anxieties, and the intracorporal identifications can thus be revealed and elaborated.
The clinical material shows that these patients are more disposed to analysis on the couch but less sensitive to the subjectalizing holding function than adolescents.
Adolescence, 2009, T. 27, n°1, pp. 117-132.