Page 193

Psichiatria dell’infanzia e dell’adolescenza (2013), vol. 80: 193-209


Testimoniare il trauma: considerazioni teorico-cliniche in tema di rappresentazione e ricordo nel child sexual abuse Witnessing trauma: theoretical and clinical considerations about memory and representation in child sexual abuse Renzo Di Cori*

Summary Starting with the analysis of the condition of witnesses and victims of child abuse, the author questions the nature and functioning of the memory and the effects of trauma on performative characteristics of remembering. The Author provides some theoretical and clinical notations with reference to psychoanalytic and neuroscientific literature, looking for evidence and convergences to clarify the relationship between legal and psychological consistency of the witness and offer a greater understanding of the representability of trauma. Both psychoanalysis and neuroscience indicate that trauma – which causes the massive irruption of stimulation unassimilable by the psychic apparatus – interferes with the formation of a symbolic representation of the event and its subsequent chances of recovery. The deeper and more widespread the trauma, the greater the story is flawed, incomplete, inaccurate. The Author concludes that listening to the child must take the physiological limits and the incomplete nature of memory into account and consequently operate by maintaining a respectful position of the uncertainty of the story, to allow a “construction” that will be constitutionally incomplete and will never be a faithful “objective reconstruction” of the event. Key words Witness – Representation – Trauma – Memory.

“…l’invisibile non è il contrario del visibile: il visibile ha esso stesso una membratura di invisibile, e l’in-visibile è la contropartita segreta del visibile, non appare che in esso”. (M. Merleau-Ponty, Il visibile e l’invisibile) “…l’essenza propria del visibile è di avere un doppio di invisibile in senso stretto, che il visibile manifesta sotto forma di una certa assenza”. (M. Merleau-Ponty, L’occhio e lo spirito)

* Psicoterapeuta, Servizio per l’Assistenza, Cura, Ricerca sull’Abuso all’Infanzia del Dipartimento di Pediatria e Neuropsichiatria Infantile, “Sapienza” Università di Roma; Docente del Master di II livello “Psichiatria forense dell’età evolutiva”, “Sapienza” Università di Roma; Consulente Tecnico del Tribunale per i Minorenni di Roma.

Psichiatria dell'infanzia e dell'Adolescenza  
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