Over the past 20 years, the sciences of the mind (neuroscience, cognitive sciences, psychology, etc.) have profoundly shaken the exploration of the human faculties and the study of their substrate: the brain.
Original models as well as new instruments of investigation (EEG, fMRI) have permitted us to apprehend the processes of consciousness, and their bases, whether unconscious, affective or connotative (desires, drives, etc.) in a whole new light. More generally, we are now able to study the multiple inscriptions of the mind, somatic as well as social.
Thanks to the work of François Ansermet and Pierre Magistretti, the Agalma Foundation is conducting new research in the intersection between the neuroscience and psychoanalysis, a task that is not so much about basing psychoanalysis on neurobiological facts according to the logic of proof as it is about opening the neuroscience up to new questions, such as those proposed by psychoanalysis.
Thus, our research is aimed at introducing the framework of psychoanalytic concepts, in particular those of the Freudian unconscious and drives, into the field of the neuroscience. Reciprocally, the point is also to revise certain psychoanalytic concepts from the base of advances in the neuroscience, in particular, work on neuronal plasticity, the phenomenon of consolidation and reconsolidation, as well as the neurobiology of somatic markers, to cite some examples.
Under the aegis of the Agalma Foundation, work is also being done dedicated to exploring the processes of creativity, in particular their unconscious side. In psychoanalysis as in musical or theatrical improvisation, the traces are continually put into play synchronically in the vertigo of the instant, where everything can be played differently.
The principle themes of research of the Agalma Foundation and its interests include the following :
- Unconscious processes and their relation to the consciousness and to the mechanisms of repression
- The modes of unconscious and conscious cognition in relation to clinical practice, to psychology, to cognitive psychology and to the neurosciences
- The somatic and neuronal bases of affectivity
- Neuronal plasticity, the assemblies of neurones and the processes of reconsolidation and association tied to the organization of interiority
- The default mode, homeostasis and interception in relation to the neural bases of individuality
- The application of functional cerebral imaging to psychoanalysis and meta-psychoanalysis
- The circuits of compensation, affectivity and the pleasure-pain principle
- Systems of auto-organisation and the information modalisation of psychic processes
- Historical, epistemological, and philosophical approaches of psychoanalysis and neuroscientific methodologies