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date: 15 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Freud embarked on his exploration of an unconscious domain hand in hand with his clinical practice. He was thus forced to think deeply about the relationship between doctor and patient. He could not afford—quite literally—to do otherwise. In the postscript to ‘Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria’ (1905), he pondered Dora’s abrupt decision to end treatment and spelled out what he had failed to appreciate in good time: transferences. Subsequent generations of psychoanalysts, particularly Melanie Klein, Bion, and Betty Joseph, pressed on along two separate—but certainly not parallel—tracks: first, stretching the concept of transference; second, introducing the concept of projective identification and rethinking countertransference. The first took off from the expansion of psychoanalytic practice to include children; the second from its expansion to include the seriously disturbed. Taken together these advances, in theory and in practice, led to reconceptualizing the analytic relationship.

Keywords: transference, projective identification, countertransference, Melanie Klein, Bion, Betty Joseph

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