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A Meeting of Minds: Mutuality in Psychoanalysis by Lewis Aron

By Lewis Aron

During this richly nuanced evaluate of many of the dimensions of mutuality in psychoanalysis, Aron exhibits that the relational method of psychoanalysis is a robust consultant to problems with process and healing technique. From his reappraisal of the options of interplay and enactment, to his exam of the problem of analyst self-disclosure, to his concluding comments at the relational import of the analyst's ethics and values, Aron squarely accepts the scientific duties attendant to a postmodern critique of psychoanalytic foundations.

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296). ) On the other hand, Leary (1994), criticizing social-constructivism for its ahistoricism, argues for contemporary psychoanalysis to maintain a dialectical position between positivism and postmodernism. He writes: "Narrative reconceptualizations nod to historical reasons but these are then reinterpreted as present-day tellings. In key respects, postmodernism purges the analytic situation of the need to grapple with history, with things that once were and had an effect" (p. 457). Leary persuasively argues for the congruence of relational, interactional, intersubjective, and social-constructivist conceptualizations of psychoanalysis with postmodern theory.

Because of the track system, however, these controversies took on a particularly concrete expression, making it easier to trace the emergence of a new paradigm. Let's consider some of the key ideas that were in the air in the midĀ·1980s. In their influential book, Object Relations and Psychoanalytic Theory, Greenberg and Mitchell (1983) (both of whom were to become members of the Relational faculty) distinguished two distinct approaches to psychoanalytic theory: the drive-structure model and the relationalĀ· structure or relational model.

This was an important but not an easy decision because the name needed to reflect that they were attempting to develop a broad umbrella track that would be inclusive in spirit and that would reflect the consensus that seemed to be emerging in the field. While they might have liked the term interpersonal because its literal meaning was appealing (they were all focused to a great degree on what went on between people in development, psychopathology, and treatment), nevertheless they were distinguishing themselves from the more narrowly defined Interpersonal track that already existed and that was quite ambivalent at best about what Copyrighted Material CHAPTER ONE this new group was doing!

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