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An examination of projective identification and its clinical uses from a Kleinian perspective. The author puts forward the hypothesis that identification is the patient's way of mastering significant trauma.
'This is an extraordinary and exciting book, the work of a truly original and creative psychoanalytic theoretician and most astute clinician. Ogden continues to expand and to deepen his reformulations of the British object-relations theorists, M. Klein, W. R. Bion, D. W. Winnicott, W. R. D. Fairbairn, H. Guntrip, to illuminate further the world of internalized object relations. His concepts are evolutionary and at times revolutionary. Exploring the area of human experience that lies beyond the psychological territories addressed by the previous theorists, he introduces the concept of an autistic-contiguous mode as a way of conceiving of the most primitive psychological organization through which the sensory 'floor' of the experience of self is generated. He conceives of this mode as a sensory-dominated, presymbolic area of experience in which the most primitive form of meaning is generated on the basis of organization of sensory impressions, particularly at the skin surface. A major tenet in the book is a conceptualization of human experience throughout life as the product of a dialectical interplay among three modes of generating experience: the depressive, the paranoid-schizoid, and the autistic-contiguous. Each mode creates, preserves, and negates the other. No single mode of generating experience exists independently of the others. Psychopathology is conceptualized as a 'collapse' of the dialectic in the direction of one or another mode of generating experience. The outcome of such collapse may be entrapment in rigid, asymbolic patterns of sensation (collapse in the direction of the autistic-contiguous mode), or imprisonment in a world of omnipotent internal objects where thoughts and feelings are experienced as things and forces which occupy or bombard the self (collapse in the direction of paranoid-schizoid mode) or isolation of the self from lived experience and aliveness of bodily, sensations (collapse in the direction of the depressive mode). Ogden presents his unique development of the autistic-contiguous mode as the synthesis, interpretation, and extension of the works of D. Meltzer, E. Bick, and F. Tustin. He is careful to state that this psychological organization is a developing and ongoing) mode of generating experience and not a limited phase of development; an elaboration of this primitive organization is an integral part of normal development. All three modes are considered not 'positions' to be passed through, outgrown, or overcome, and relegated to the past, but as integral dimensions of present adult ego functioning. Sensory experience in an autistic-contiguous mode has rhythmicity that is becoming the continuity of being; it has boundedness that is the beginning of experience of the place where one feels things and lives; it has features such as shape, hardness, cold, warmth and texture, beginnings of the qualities of who one is. As his generous case examples aptly demonstrate, Ogden's theories are solidly grounded in his discerning work with a broad variety of patients. His brilliant pathfinding will enlighten and enrich the reader with invaluable insights. He will listen with new ears and with a fresh conceptual framework with which to comprehend the most primitive elements of human development and the complex interplay among the different modes of experience. This is a bold, important, instructive, and stimulating book of equally great clinical and theoretical applicability.' —The Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association A Jason Aronson Book
Clinicians who read this volume will be richly awarded by an expanded understanding of their patients and the therapeutic process.
Thomas H. Ogden is the winner of the 2004 International Journal of Psychoanalysis Award for the Most Important Paper of the year and the 2010 Haskell Norman Prize – an international award for "outstanding achievement as a psychoanalytic clinician, teacher and theoretician". Thomas Ogden is internationally recognized as one of the most creative analytic thinkers writing today. In this book he brings his original analytic ideas to life by means of his own method of closely reading major analytic works. He reads watershed papers in a way that does not simply cast new and discerning light on the works he is discussing, but introduces his own thinking regarding the ideas being discussed in the texts. Ogden offers expanded understandings of some of the most fundamental concepts constituting psychoanalytic theory and practice. He does so by finding in each of the articles he discusses much that the author knew, but did not know that he or she knew. An example of this is how Freud, in his conception of the unconscious workings of mourning and melancholia, was providing the foundation of a theory of unconscious internal object relations. Ogden goes on to provide further re-readings of classic material from the following key contributors to contemporary psychoanalysis: W. R. D. Fairbairn Donald Winnicott Wilfred Bion Hans Loewald Harold Searles. This book is not simply a book of readings, it is a book about reading, about how to read in a way that readers actively rewrite what they are reading, and in so doing makes the ideas truly their own. The concepts that Ogden develops in his readings provide a significant step in the reader’s expansion of his or her understanding of many of the ideas that lie at the cutting edge of contemporary psychoanalysis. It will be of particular interest to psychoanalysts and psychotherapists who use a psychodynamic approach, as well as professionals and academics with an interest in contemporary psychoanalysis.
Those who spend most of their time dealing with other people's stress are most vulnerable to stress themselves. Stress in Psychotherapists highlights the pressures experienced by psychotherapists and examines how the effects vary according to the problems they treat, the settings in which they work and their professional and personal development. Written by a team of experienced practitioners this book is important reading for all those in psychotherapy training and practice.
Winner of the 2010 Haskell Norman Prize for Outstanding Achievement in Psychoanalysis! Why is dreaming the mind's single most important psychoanalytic activity? This Art of Psychoanalysis offers a unique perspective on psychoanalysis that features a new way of conceptualizing the role of dreaming in human psychology. Thomas Ogden's thinking has been at the cutting edge of psychoanalysis for more than 25 years. In this volume, he builds on the work of Freud, Klein, Winnicott, and Bion and explores the idea that human psychopathology is a manifestation of a breakdown of the individual's capacity to dream his experience. The investigation into the role of the analyst in participating psychologically in the patient's dreaming is illustrated throughout with elegant and absorbing accounts of clinical work, providing a fascinating insight into the analyst's experience. Subjects covered include: a new reading of the origins of object relations theory on holding and containing, being and dreaming on psychoanalytic writing. This engaging book succeeds in conveying not just a set of techniques but a way of being with patients that is humane and compassionate. It will be of great interest to psychoanalysts, psychotherapists and other mental health professionals.
This text contains descriptions of how to work with borderline patients.

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