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Moore, N. (1988). The Shape of Change. Brit. J. Psychother., 4(3):227-239.

(1988). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 4(3):227-239

The Shape of Change

Norah Moore

You could not discover the limits of the soul, even if you travelled every road to do so, such, is the depth of its form.

(Heraclitus I)

This paper considers patterns of change that occur in analysis, in terms of image or of model, with clinical examples. Linear and spiral models of individuation are discussed, and Jung's notion of enantiodromia between opposite parts of the psyche is related to Thom's catastrophe theory.

Change is crucially important for an analyst whether in the patient or in himself, or in his dialectic with the patient. He may not actively foster change nor set it as a goal, but if there is stasis he knows that vitality has gone.

In this paper I look, not at how change is effected, but at the shape of change itself.

Some years ago the phrase ‘the shape of change’ was used by a biologist while investigating the variation of biological behaviour (Gorman 1976). I use it in a similar way in exploring the patterns the course of analysis or of life may take.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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