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Fosshage, J.L. (1994). Toward Reconceptualising Transference: Theoretical and Clinical Considerations. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 75:265-280.

(1994). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 75:265-280

Toward Reconceptualising Transference: Theoretical and Clinical Considerations

James L. Fosshage


Two fundamentally different models of transference have emerged, designated herein as the displacement and organisation models. The purpose of this paper is to compare the fundamental features of these two models and to contribute to the development and cohesiveness of the organisation model through the consideration of certain theoretical and clinical issues. Transference is defined here to refer to the primary organising patterns or schemas with which the analysand constructs and assimilates his or her experience of the analytic relationship. While repetitive pathological transferential organisations that are based on traumatogenic experiences variably impede a person developmentally and in conflict-resolution, other transferential organisations are forward-looking crystallisations of developmentally-needed experiences (selfobject transferences). Transference (and countertransference) is viewed as variably co-determined by analysand and analyst. Clinical issues are delineated concerning the process of illuminating the transference in light of the variable contributions of the analyst to the transference, implications for extra-transference, and the differentiation of process and content to determine the meaning of the transference.

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