Incandescent Alphabets. Psychosis and the Enigma of Language by Annie Rogers

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Psychosis, an invasion of mind and body from without, creates an enigma about what is happening and thrusts the individual into radical isolation. What are the subjective details of such experiences? This book explores psychosis as knowledge cut off from history, truth that cannot be articulated in any other form. Delusion is a new language made of ‘incandescent alphabets’ that the psychotic adopts from imposed voices. The psychotic uses language in a singular way to found and explain a strange experience that he or she cannot exit. Through the exegesis of language in psychosis based on first person accounts, the book orients readers to an enigmatic Other, pervasive and inescapable, that will come to inhabit every aspect of the psychotic’s being, thought and bodily experience. Drawing on the author’s own experience of psychosis and psychoanalysis, as well as conversations with analyst colleagues, Dr Rogers offers ways to listen to language in delusion, and argues for the promise of a modified psychoanalytic treatment with psychosis.

‘This extraordinary book about psychosis as an encounter and relationship with language draws the reader in through a narrative that shows us how lacking mainstream psychiatric and psychoanalytic diagnostic categories are. Incandescent Alphabets is an amazing conceptual and poetic alternative that makes of the experience of psychosis an illuminated manuscript from which readers learn about the author, the people she works with, and about themselves.’
–– Ian Parker, psychoanalyst and author of Psychology after Psychoanalysis: Psychosocial Studies and Beyond