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Harel, G. (2020). Maintaining the Tension between the Classic Seduction Theory and the Role of Unconscious Fantasies: A Contemporary Reconsideration. Brit. J. Psychother., 36(2):216-231.

(2020). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 36(2):216-231

Maintaining the Tension between the Classic Seduction Theory and the Role of Unconscious Fantasies: A Contemporary Reconsideration

Galit Harel, Ph.D.

This article describes the long-term psychoanalytic psychotherapy of a young woman who had experienced trauma during her childhood. The details of the trauma were unknown, as all memory of the trauma had been repressed. Past trauma is analysable through a prism of transference, dreaming and dreams, mental states and thinking processes that offer an opportunity to explore and analyse the influence of both reality and fantasy on the patient. The presented case describes a therapeutic process that strives to discover hidden meanings through the unconscious system and illustrates the movement from unconscious to conscious during exploration of the patient's personal trauma in treatment. The author discusses the importance of classical and contemporary psychoanalytic models of childhood sexual trauma through the discovery of manifest and latent content, unconscious fantasies and actual events of trauma. It is suggested that the complexity of trauma is clarified by the tension between these models and by the inclusion of aspects of both of them for a complete understanding.

[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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