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Skolnikoff, A.Z. (1998). Love and Hate in the Analytic Setting. By Glen O. Gabbard. Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson, 1996, vii + 265 pp., $ 40.00. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 46(4):1287-1291.

(1998). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 46(4):1287-1291

Love and Hate in the Analytic Setting. By Glen O. Gabbard. Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson, 1996, vii + 265 pp., $ 40.00

Review by:
Alan Z. Skolnikoff

This is an important book for several reasons: First, is one of very few to give detailed descriptions of analysts' experience of love and hate in the analytic situation. Second, in its approach to clinical material, it expands the ego psychological framework to include the theories of Bion, Ogden, Winnicott, and contemporary Kleinians. Gabbard is able to integrate such concepts as the paranoid-schizoid and depressive positions, containment, and projective identification within that framework. His ability to tolerate and put to use the pluralism associated with multiple theoretical perspectives allows him to choose whatever theory is most clinically useful in describing the clinical phenomena at hand. Finally, Gabbard makes the very important recommendation that consultation be sought for the frequently troublesome erotic or hateful countertransferences that analysts encounter.

The book covers many topics, but focuses on love and hate in nonanalytic and analytic settings, on the positive, curative aspects of these feelings, and on their negative, destructive aspects. The emphasis is on the two-person field and descriptions of transference-countertransference interactions.

Gabbard reviews different conceptualizations of the real and illusory aspects of love in analysis. There is also an excellent description of the complexities of romantic love, a type of love occurring in analysis as well as in extraanalytic situations. Having the capacity to experience this love is defined as an achievement of “romantic space.”

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