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Fuqua, P.B. (2007). Practicing Intersubjectively: By Peter Buirski. Int. J. Psychoanal. Self Psychol., 2(2):235-237.

(2007). International Journal of Psychoanalytic Self Psychology, 2(2):235-237

Review Essay

Practicing Intersubjectively: By Peter Buirski

Review by:
Reviewed By Paula B. Fuqua, M.D.

Practicing Intersubjectively is designed to show how recent ideas about intersubjectivity can be applied in clinical practice. The book begins with a brief, straightforward explication of the theory and follows with several case examples. The theory section is a summation of Buirski and Pamela Haglund's (2001) previous work, Making Sense Together: The Intersubjective Approach to Psychotherapy. Buirski and several coauthors have provided this work as a follow-up to that volume. It is appropriate for therapists who are early in their career or who may be more experienced, but want to understand the clinical application of the intersubjective perspective more thoroughly.

Following the introduction, Buirski borrows a case from the psychoanalytic literature to illustrate the contrast between intersubjectivity and the one-person, structural model of classical psychoanalysis. Ms. K. was treated by Martin Silverman (1987), who reported on his treatment in Psychoanalytic Inquiry. Buirski shows how Ms. K. could be understood using an intersubjective stance. He emphasizes Ms. K.'s lived experience and the coconstruction of affects as well as interactions with her analyst in a relational point of view.

In the following chapter, he describes an experience of his own, wherein he changed his approach from a classical analytic viewpoint to an intersubjective one in the middle of a session. Buirski again illustrates how, in the beginning of the initial interview, his classical psychoanalytic approach, using structural theory and focusing on resistance, led to a defensive response from his patient, Mr. G.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

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