The screen memory and the act of remembering



Screen memories, seen by Freud, Greenacre and other analysts of a past generation as a key source of data for the reconstruction of psychic and historical reality, have been relatively neglected in contemporary analysis. A fresh look shows that these durable, constant memories have a dual relation to childhood experience: they memorialize both a specific organization of trauma, wish and defense, and a private childhood act of remembering. Close attention to the screen memory itself and the context in which it appears indicates that both aspects of screen memory have meaning for the individual and are represented in fantasy. Both currents of meaning can be seen in a literary screen memory and in the clinical situation, where both play out in transference and countertransference.