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D'Agostino, G. Ferrigno, M.P. (2014). The Setting: Limit or Limes?. Ital. Psychoanal. Annu., 8:175-182.

(2014). The Italian Psychoanalytic Annual, 8:175-182

The Setting: Limit or Limes? Language Translation

Giuseppe D'Agostino and Maria Paola Ferrigno

The function of the setting in the analyst's mental process lies at the basis of the considerations that have led us to write this paper together. Both of us use psychoanalysis for working with adults, adolescents and children and this means, as many of us know, that we continually have to modulate our relationship with the setting. For those who divide their time between the consulting room for children and that for adults, the setting is a «companion» we have to deal with on a daily basis, not an always integrated, good-object in «position D,” but a multi-formed, paradoxical object that demands constant examination. In the room the analyst takes part in the analytic scene first of all as a person with his own theatre of internal objects (among these: his story, his primary objects, his past and present relationships, his analyst or analysts, his supervisors and the rich constellation of his psychoanalytic model). Every one of his thoughts, gestures and interventions is the bearer of this richness and complexity. Likewise, the patient, through the representation of his dramatic story, brings his objects - whether helpful or persecutory - into the crowded terrain of the analytic field.

But there is another «subject» of the analysis: the setting, the full complement of aspects - concrete (the consulting room), temporal (the weekly number and length of sessions), emotive (the quality of the analyst's mind) - that go to make up what is generally called the analytic situation or frame.

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