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“Objects” and “characters” in psychoanalytical texts/dialogues

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The authors propose the use of the narratological category of “character” in psychoanalysis. They consider this notion useful in studying clinical material because it may help in making clearer the distinction between the clinical development of dialogue and the theoretical options that can be used to conceptualize the interaction.In order to facilitate theoretical comparison and effective technical integration, the authors outline three main schemes commonly found in different psychoanalytic traditions: (a) the models with a strong bias toward a reality-oriented approach, which could be defined “individual-historical;” (b) the models focused on the patient's internal world, which will be defined as “individual-phantasmatic;” and (c) the models centered on the study of the intersubjective clinical facts and usually referred to as theories of the “bipersonal psychoanalytic field.” The hypothesis developed in the paper is that the characters of the psychoanalytic materials are to be considered both as a part of a text, which is endowed with a certain stability in the patient's inner world, and as a component of a dialogue that is prone to living dialectical exchanges and transformations.
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Keywords: Object; character; dialogue; interpretations; model of the mind; narrations; technique

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2008

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