Zero narcissism. Phenomenon of Boris Yudin

Publication type Article
Status Published
Occupation: Leading Research Fellow
Affiliation: Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences
Address: 12/1 Goncharnaya Str., Moscow 109240, Russian Federation
Journal nameChelovek
EditionVolume 30 Issue №3

The article is a specially version of the text “Instead of the Conclusion” from the forthcoming book “Narcissus in Armor. Psychopathology of “grandiose Self” in politics and power” (M.: Progress-Tradition, 2019) reworked by the author for the journal “Chelovek”. The urgency of the problem is justified by the multiple symptoms and consequences of narcissistic deviations in politics, the mass consciousness and the collective unconscious with an emphasis on Russian reality. The conclusion about such deviations is made on the basis of comparison with the lists of symptoms of standard diagnostics, including the DSM-5. Fixation on own grandiosity and omnipotence, imaginary greatness, abnormal desire to put oneself in the spotlight, tendency to exploit and manipulativeness, lack of empathy and intolerance towards criticism with explosions of narcissistic rage are being marked. Against the background of a characteristic for Russia mass ignorance of narcissism epidemics in the modern world, and particularly in the recent decades, it is being shown the psychological reason for narcissistic counterattacks aimed to keep the issue solely within the framework of ordinary logic and competence. The formula “zero narcissism” is introduced as a psychoanalytic and therapeutic setting associated with the need to block the automatic competition and narcissistic provocations of the patient, to track own effects of analytical grandeur and therapeutic power. The problem of the “zero of narcissism” is investigated not only at the level of theory and methodology, but also empirically, using the example of a specific psychotype. Such an example is presented in an anthropological analysis of the “Boris Yudin phenomenon” — the founder and former editor-in-chief of the journal “Chelovek” (in 1999 – 2017). Synthesis of theoretical and methodological analysis with a specific case description helps to coordinate theory and stable everyday ideas. Such work in the zone "close to the zero" opens up an opportunity to correspond and partly to combine different versions and scales of normal, pathological and malignant narcissism, taking into consideration its destructive and constructive accentuation.

Keywordspolitical narcissism, mania in grandeur, anti-narcissism, “zero of narcissism”, narcissistic counterattacks and analytical strategies
Publication date24.06.2019
Number of characters34377
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