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Tip: To review the bibliography…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

It is always useful to review an article’s bibliography and references to get a deeper understanding of the psychoanalytic concepts and theoretical framework in it.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Ungar, V.R. Ahumada, L.B. (2001). Supervision: A Container-Contained Approach. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 82(1):71-81.
  

(2001). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 82(1):71-81

Supervision: A Container-Contained Approach

Virginia R. Ungar and Luisa Busch De Ahumada

The authors illustrate an approach to the supervisory process as a learning experience for both supervisee and supervisor built on the containment of unconscious anxieties. It is argued that a core function of psychoanalytic supervision is to help contain the emotional turbulence and the unconscious anxieties arising and evolving in the two interacting domains of the analytic and the supervisory sessions. From this perspective, the analyst-patient interaction and that of the supervisee and supervisor can be understood as twin, tiered transformational arenas, the supervisory one being at the service of holding and grasping the roles the superviseelanalyst goes through as part of the analytic process. On the basis of detailed clinical material from a disturbed 7-year-old girl, the authors explore the interrelated issues and difficulties in containing anxieties and turbulence in both the analytic and the supervisory situation. When emotional containment is adequately handled, the supervision helps the understanding and development of the supervisee's use of his/her own personality as a treatment instrument, as advocated by Fleming and Benedek decades ago. The supervisory session thus furthers the resolution of clinical issues through symbol-formation, clinical sessions and supervision being twin domains for recording and understanding emotional evolution.

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