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Psychoanal Q. 2010 Apr;79(2):349-80.

An elusive aspect of the analyst's relationship to transference.

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  • 1Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute, USA.


The author discusses the analyst's reactions to being the object of the patient's transference, noting that this topic has been somewhat neglected in the psychoanalytic literature because of the centrality of transference analysis to the psychoanalytic method. He identifies different dimensions of countertransference that relate to being a transference object and discusses these in the light of "objectionable" and "unobjectionable" transference. The analyst's relationship to theory is also discussed. To clinically illustrate his points, the author summarizes the case of a patient whose transference fantasies and attributions engendered quite contrasting reactions by two different analysts.

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