Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To refine your search with the author’s first initial…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

If you get a large number of results after searching for an article by a specific author, you can refine your search by adding the author’s first initial. For example, try writing “Freud, S.” in the Author box of the Search Tool.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Osofsky, J.D. (1996). Commentaries. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 44:422-429.

(1996). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 44:422-429


Joy D. Osofsky

Peter Wolff in his introduction declares that “psychoanalytic theories should concern themselves with the phenomena subsumed under the concepts of unconscious ideas, hidden motives, and repression, and they should specify a method or methods for exploring the polysemous meaning of irrational fantasies, dreams, and actions that are presumed to be motivated by unconscious ideas.” His position is clear. If he subscribes to the idea that psychoanalysis should deal only with unconscious ideas and repression, then it follows, logically and necessarily, that infant observations are “irrelevant” for his understanding of psychoanalysis. As Fajardo (1993) emphasizes, the clinician who focuses on data of subjectivity in the psychoanalytic process will find research that focuses on manifest behavior observed by another to be irrelevant. A psychoanalyst with this orientation is directed not by a theory of development and reconstruction of a veridical past, but rather by subjective aspects of his or her present experience with the patient, in which inquiry involves mutual construction and interpretation. For such a position, infant research or any empirical research outside the psychoanalytic situation would not be considered useful.

Wolff illuminates his position further with the following statement: “I will limit the discussion to ‘Freudian’ psychoanalysis, as it has been the focus of nearly all the infant studies” (italics added). This perspective represents an extremely narrow view of infant studies and psychoanalysis.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2019, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.