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Galatzer-Levy, R.M. (2004). Response to Drs Quinodoz and Schachter. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 85(4):1010-1012.

(2004). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 85(4):1010-1012

Response to Drs Quinodoz and Schachter Related Papers

Robert M. Galatzer-Levy

Dear Sirs,

Drs Quinodoz and Schacter raise important questions about the developmental model I propose in Galatzer-Levy (2004) and its clinical significance, especially as it relates to reconstruction and transference.

The term transference is now used in so many ways that it is hard to discuss generally. Freud himself used the term in several ways. The phenomena he observed, that patients repeatedly treat the analyst in intensely affectively charged patterns whose genesis is outside awareness, is part of every analyst's experience. These patterns have been explained as representing memories and these explanations have proven clinically and interpretively useful, as have other explanations. Memory is not a veridical representation of a past event, but rather a currently held picture of the past. Many analysts and psychologists recognized that memory is an active construction whose relationship to the past is complex and varied (Schafer, 1992; Schacter, 1996). In so far as Freud treats transference as a time machine, his mistake has been clear for a long time without benefit of nonlinear dynamics.

However, the ideas of nonlinear dynamics I describe do have at least two direct applications to current transference concepts. If we think of the analysis of transference as including the creation of adequate narratives that encompass recurring patterns of thought, action and feeling, we are immediately led to the question of what constitutes narrative adequacy.

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