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The Birth of the Infant: a Developmental Perspective

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image of Journal of Phenomenological Psychology

Psychological birth is not a single event but occurs again and again throughout one's life. A new psychological structure is bom in each developmental transformation of a person's existence. But what about "biological birth" or what we will call the bodily birth of the infant? Does this involve psychological development? It is not taken up in this way by developmental psychology, which usually begins with the newborn infant Some psychologists have even argued that when an infant leaves the mother's uterus, he is bom biologically but not yet psychologically. In the following paper we will take this view as problematic and address to it a description of the birth process based on the perceptive observations of Frederick Leboyer. Appropriating some of Kegan's notions regarding psychological development,' we will reflect upon the . phenomenon of being bom psychologically. In other words, we will investigate whether and in what sense being bom can be seen as a phenomenon involving psychological development.


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