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Posener, J.A. (1989). A Cognitive Perspective on Object Relations, Drive Development and Ego Structure in the Second and Third Years of Life. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 70:627-643.
  

(1989). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 70:627-643

A Cognitive Perspective on Object Relations, Drive Development and Ego Structure in the Second and Third Years of Life

Joel A. Posener

SUMMARY

This paper extends a recent line of research by correlating Piaget's theory of cognitive development with several psychoanalytic perspectives on development during the second and third years of life. The concrete, imagistic, unintegrated nature of mental representations associated by Mahler and Kernberg with this period, along with the mental operation of splitting, are related to preconceptual representation, a cognitive mode described by Piaget. Psychoanalytic perspectives on the body ego and object world associated with the anal period are also seen to involve concrete, unintegrated representations which show correspondence with preconceptual cognition. Parallels are explored between cognitive stages and the psychoanalytic understanding of ego and superego development. While psychoanalysis is not a cognitive psychology, aspects of its theory are concerned with cognitive structure and are enriched by a consideration of cognitive development.

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