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Zachrisson, A. (2011). Dynamics of Psychoanalytic Supervision: A Heuristic Model. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 92(4):943-961.

(2011). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 92(4):943-961

Education and Professional Issues

Dynamics of Psychoanalytic Supervision: A Heuristic Model

Anders Zachrisson

(Final version accepted 15 November 2010)

This paper presents a heuristic model for the dynamics of psychoanalytic supervision. It is not a manual for how to perform supervision, but a model for how to identify and think about the complex elements and forces influencing the supervisory process. The point of departure is that psychoanalysis is a composite craft in which seemingly contrary elements like strict rules and creative intuitions have their place and interact. Several aspects of supervision are discussed: aims, learning processes, teaching methods, relationship, emotional atmosphere and evaluation. Competence is given a pivotal place in the model. The main feature of the model is that these aspects of supervision are all seen as suspended in a field of dynamic tensions between phenomena in real or apparent opposition. One example of this is the tension in the supervisory relationship between supervisor as instructor acting as an authority for the candidate whilst being a mentor fostering autonomy in the candidate. It is argued that related kinds of dynamics characterize several aspects of psychoanalytic supervision and that these tensions are inherent in analytic work. In conclusion a key word picture of the model is presented.

[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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