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Reed, G.S. (1997). The Analyst's Interpretation As Fetish. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 45:1153-1181.

(1997). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 45:1153-1181

The Analyst's Interpretation As Fetish

Gail S. Reed

This paper explores the transference dynamics and underlying fantasies of analysands whose characters have been shaped by conflict solutions common to perversion. Giving the impression of a serious engagement for therapeutic ends, these individuals live out in the treatment a sexualized enactment in which the analyst's interventions are transformed into a fetish. This enactment is designed to support a defensive effort to avoid external perceptions that trigger certain fantasies of danger, including that of castration. It is designed also to cancel out interventions of the analyst that become equated with these frightening fantasies. Since the analyst's efforts to explore and interpret this enactment are also turned into a fetish, such a transference poses grave difficulties for the analysis. A technical approach is suggested in which the analyst focuses on the contradiction itself, the operation of the disavowal, the fantasy of danger that motivates the persistent use of disavowal, and the underlying, often vengeful and envious wishes that contribute both to the undermining of the analysis and to the content of the fantasies of danger that provoke so much anxiety.

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