In human studies, lesioning of the rostral anterior insula (associated with the affective component of pain) can result in pain asymbolia
: the disassociation of the unpleasant experience and the nociceptive response to pain (e.g., Berthier et al., 1987).
, she nevertheless underscores the function of
Other differential diagnoses that should be considered in such patients include CIP pain asymbolia
, Fragile X syndrome (11,15), and syringomyelia.
This paper argues that Grahek has mischaracterized pain asymbolia
. Properly understood, asymbolics have lost a general capacity to care about their bodily integrity.
Bahun, though, radically revises the affective tenor of both La Trobe and the audience: "Every stasis entails a risk, La Trobe realizes as the audience's intense despair engulfs her: one may become overwhelmed by reality, fall into autistic stillness, or be driven into melancholic asymbolia
The deep sadness of the melancholic subject is indicated by asymbolia
. Through creative practice, melancholia as a structuring of psychic space is in some way transferred to artworks.
Making use of Julia Kristeva's concept of narcissistic melancholy, (4) I read The Memory Keeper's Daughter as an attempt to represent 'the real that does not lend itself to signification' (13), showing how it represents grief as a turning away from the realm of signs, a disintegration of bonds, and a retreat into asymbolia
. Finally, I utilize Kristeva's concept of poetic language as a 'counter-depressant', which ameliorates the pain of loss without repudiating it, to suggest that this and other examples of women's grief fiction attempt to 'transform the woeful darkness into lyrical song' (162).