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Roth, P. (2001). Mapping The Landscape: Levels of Transference Interpretation. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 82(3):533-543.

(2001). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 82(3):533-543

Mapping The Landscape: Levels of Transference Interpretation

Priscilla Roth

The author argues that there are distinctly different kinds of transference interpretation, each of which might be valid in particular circumstances in analysis, but which contain and imply different understandings of what is meant by a ‘transference interpretation’. She suggests that transference interpretations may be at any one of four different levels, and she describes these levels as ranging from interpretations that point to links between current events in the analysis and events from the patient's history, through interpretations that link events in the patient's external life to the patient's often unconscious phantasies about the analyst and the analysis, to interpretations that focus on the use of the analyst and the analytic situation to enact unconscious phantasy configurations, sometimes pulling the analyst into the enactment. Material from four consecutive sessions of an analysis is presented to illustrate how all levels of transference interpretation may be part of a lively and meaningful analysis, but how the level of interpretation may change as the level of understanding deepens within a session and from one session to the next.

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