The author bases this paper on extensive research concerning children in genocide
with a starting point in the Holocaust and in the genocide in Rwanda 1994. She
demonstrates indicators for psychological phenomena concerning the child
survivors’ affect regulating that appeared in life histories presented in videotaped
in-depth interviews. The psychological phenomena concern experiences of
persecution and ways of coming to terms with recurring memory images and affects.
The interviews that have been analysed in detail form a basis for an emerging
conceptual model about trauma- and generational-linking processes within each
individual—the ‘affect propeller’. An overall conclusion from this study is that
past traumatic experiences are recovered not as memories in the usual sense of the
word, but as affects invading the present. Accordingly, affects seem to tell the story
of the past traumatic experiences.
International Psychoanalytical Association: International Psychoanalysis Library , 2006. Vol. 87, 725-746 p.