Idealized Parental Imago
IDEALIZED PARENTAL IMAGO
The idealized parental imago is a narcissistic configuration that arises from the child's attribution of former, lost narcissistic perfection to an admired and omnipotent self-object. A precursor of the Freudian ego ideal, it can be the object of a fixation and not be integrated into the self in order to lead to ideals, but instead remain a concrete self-object.
This notion appeared in Heinz Kohut's article, "Forms and Transformations of Narcissism" (1966), and was formalized in his Analysis of the Self (1971). The idealized parental imago accounts for the need to merge with an all-powerful object and for religious and idealistic feelings of varying degrees of intensity. It gives rise to an idealizing transference in analysis.
In The Restoration of the Self (1977) Kohut conceived of it as a pole of the self, a possibility or potential for the self, which acquires its cohesion by responses of the self-objects that promote a sense of merging and calm. One pole can compensate for the other; idealization can compensate for deficient mirror responses. The self will be fragile only if both poles fail in their function.
These views of Kohut have been criticized on metapsychological grounds because they are based on the notion of an independent line of development for narcissism.
See also: Alter ego; Bipolar self; Idealizing transference; Narcissistic transference; Twinship transference/alter ego transference.
Kohut, Heinz. (1966). Forms and transformations of narcissism. Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 14, 243-272.
——. (1971). The analysis of the self. New York: International Universities Press.
——. (1977). The restoration of the self. New York: International Universities Press.
"Idealized Parental Imago." International Dictionary of Psychoanalysis. . Encyclopedia.com. (March 17, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/psychology/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/idealized-parental-imago
"Idealized Parental Imago." International Dictionary of Psychoanalysis. . Retrieved March 17, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/psychology/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/idealized-parental-imago
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.