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Lombardi, R. (2005). From the eclipse of the body to the dawn of thought By Armando B. Ferrari, translated by Isabella Chigi London: Free Association Books. 2004. 251 pp.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 86(2):579-584.

(2005). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 86(2):579-584

From the eclipse of the body to the dawn of thought By Armando B. Ferrari, translated by Isabella Chigi London: Free Association Books. 2004. 251 pp.

Review by:
Riccardo Lombardi

In analytic work there cannot be just the analyst or the analysand: both are needed in order to offer the two protagonists a new experience, that is, to enable them to go deep into themselves insofar as they have each been able to do so with the other (Ferrari, 1983, p. 477).

This is a statement from 20 years ago. In it Ferrari conveys the idea of an intersubjective matrix on which his more recent research is based; and this is now available in a single volume in English, having previously been published between 1992 and 1998 in three volumes in Italy and Brazil. I am taking this as my point of departure, because, were one to overlook it, Ferrari's research on the body-mind relationship would run the risk of being misinterpreted within the present analytic culture which is strongly oriented towards the relational as a regression towards a one-person psychology.

In his ‘project’ about the analytical relationship, written in collaboration with the Italian philosopher Emilio Garroni, Ferrari claimed,

The most heterogeneous material and … the components of the largest variety of models … must be subject to some kind of organisation. Such an organisation would not conform to a model or a rule, but to a constructive principle (Ferrari and Garroni, 1979, p. 309).

The constructive dimension, one that would later be made famous in psychoanalysis in particular by the work of Hoffman (1998), explicitly informs this essay which is characterised by a strong philosophical and epistemological orientation.

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