THE LETTER 54 Autumn 2013, pages 73-80.
The article argues that once nurtured by language, the human subject is removed from the condition of a natural existence where every instinct is matched to an external object; instead he is driven to pursue the lost object where satisfaction is rather a path than a fact Taking drug addiction as paradigmatic of modern illness, the author describes how the suffering and decay involving consumption pathologies are related to the attempt to return to a natural state, non-dependent on language and desire, where objects of reality would be sufﬁcient to silence the drive. However, by doing so it reinforces the constancy principle, later related in Freudian theory to the death drive, leading to the worst developments. In conclusion, basic directions for treating these patients are offered taken from the experience of the clinical practice of the ‘Centro Mineiro de Toxicomania’, a public health Centre in Brazil for patients with alcohol and drug abuse problems and supported by a psychoanalytic orientation.
Keywords: consumption, modern pathologies, psychoanalysis, drug addiction, treatment, Centro Mineiro de Toxicomania.
Many are the authors that have been elaborating the role that consumption plays in our daily lives and culture, identifying not only the action of consuming, but its paradigms and philosophical consequences. Psychoanalysts are no different and have approached the problem by acknowledging the appearance of symptoms that differed from those usually addressed to them.