death instinct

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death instinct

n.
A primitive impulse for destruction, decay, and death, postulated by Sigmund Freud as coexisting with and opposing the life instinct. Also called Thanatos.

death′ in`stinct


n.
1. Psychoanal. an impulse to withdraw or destroy, working in opposition to forces urging survival and creation (life instinct).
2. suicidal tendency or inclination.
[1915–20]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.death instinct - (psychoanalysis) an unconscious urge to die
depth psychology, psychoanalysis, analysis - a set of techniques for exploring underlying motives and a method of treating various mental disorders; based on the theories of Sigmund Freud; "his physician recommended psychoanalysis"
impulse, urge - an instinctive motive; "profound religious impulses"
References in periodicals archive ?
Fizzing with wonderful cultural observations, the book takes in, for example, a penetrating critique of the popular TV series Breaking Bad, in which Walter White's death drive is revealed to be that of a wider political and cultural formation ignored in the story.
He interrogates this impatience from the perspectives of towards a hermeneutics of skepticism; Montaignean meditations; ideology, critique, and the event of literature; irony, power, and the death drive; queering difference, or the feminine logic of the Non-All; immunizing ontology: the speculative turn; and desire of the theorist.
It enjoys multiple referents: in one sense, it refers to "death drive." Later it also comes to name the need for, desire for, and sickness of desire for the archive, that is, homesickness or nostalgia for the archive.
At the heart of listening Professor Szendy locates the ear of the Other that manifests itself as the original division of a "split-hearing" that turns the drive for mastery and surveillance into the death drive. Exceptionally well researched and written, thoroughly 'reader friendly' in organization and presentation, "All Ears: The Aesthetics of Espionage" is unreservedly recommended for community and academic library collections.
Contrasting with the acceleration of the death drive that the end of human sleep would imply, Julia Feyrer and Tamara Henderson's neo-Surrealist sculptural installations and Leif Elggren's exploration of the space underneath different couches, one of them being Freud's own, are still trying to find a place of human autonomy.
A brief overview of the studies conducted psychoanalytically on Endgame shows that none has scrutinized Hamm in light of Freud's theory of life drive and death drive. Accordingly, this article looks at Endgame through a psychoanalytic lens and argues that Hamm's suffering unites him with his abstract, psychological death.
Bronfen further links the foundational suppression or sacrifice of the feminine other to such psychoanalytic concepts as Freud's death drive, the Lacanian Thing, and Kristeva's semiotic chora.
Borges, I will argue, benefitted from at least one major psychoanalytic concept: Todestrieb or the death drive. And it is a concept that Freud, not Jung, introduced, hesitantly, into psychoanalysis.
Eros is the life force from which was derived the word erotic, while Thanatos is the death drive, the demonic representation of death in ancient Greek mythology.
A more useful way to read Marnie is in terms of the 'death drive'.11 This is a term used in psychoanalysis, and refers to the desire for self-destruction and an obsessive push towards returning to the state before birth.
The relationship between the real and the death drive is significant in Lacanian psychoanalysis.
His book, Death Drive: There Are No Accidents, takes the untimely deaths of 20 celebrities in road accidents and examines the circumstances surrounding them.