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Wachtel, P.L. (2011). On: Response to Dr Szajnberg. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 92(2):472-473.

(2011). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 92(2):472-473

On: Response to Dr Szajnberg

Paul L. Wachtel, Ph.D.

Dear Editors,

It is difficult to determine whether Dr. Szajnberg intends his letter as a critique of my article or an amplification. The idea of nested models of attachment and of internal models of attachment being different with regard to representations of mother and father, for example, is completely consistent with the central thrust of my own article. But referring to an approach that attends to mental representations as an ‘alternative’ approach suggests that perhaps Dr. Szajnberg did not understand that the conceptualization I offered very centrally addressed mental representations. One of the central points of my article was that attending to mental representations was not an alternative to attending to the actual events, relationships, and distinctions in the person's life but that, as Bowlby illuminated, the internal working models of attachment are contextual structures. For too long, psychoanalysts tended to see attention to the internal world as an alternative to attention to the world of daily lived experience (see Wachtel, 2008).

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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