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Reich, A. (1960). Further Remarks on Counter-Transference. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 41:389-395.

(1960). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 41:389-395

Further Remarks on Counter-Transference

Annie Reich

Within the last few years a large number of papers on counter-transference have been published, coming from many different parts of the world. It has been claimed that just as transference was at first thought to be merely a disturbing factor, yet was recognized later on as the pivotal therapeutic factor in psycho-analysis, so now counter-transference is found to represent not only an interfering agent, but an essential catalytic one needed to achieve the therapeutic goals of psycho-analysis. The purpose of my paper is to discuss this idea and to refute it.

I believe that the increasing concentration on the phenomenon of counter-transference can be traced to a number of causes. Modifications of the analyst's technique and behaviour are sometimes necessitated by the 'widening scope' of psycho-analysis, since we no longer deal only with neuroses, but also with various other forms of pathology. The rising importance of psycho-analysis in psychiatry as a whole, in social work, education, etc., the expansion of 'psycho-analytically oriented' psychotherapy, and the ensuing emphasis on 'interpersonal relationships', all have brought in their wake the danger of a dilution of psycho-analysis, of a confusion between psycho-analysis proper and psychotherapy, and therefore of confusion about the role of the therapist. Besides, it should not be overlooked that our growing experience in the training of student-analysts confronts us more and more with emotional interferences in the students, reminding us again of similar difficulties in ourselves.

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