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Kalsched, D.E. (2002). Response to Gustav Bovensiepen. J. Anal. Psychol., 47(2):259-263.

(2002). Journal of Analytical Psychology, 47(2):259-263

Response to Gustav Bovensiepen Related Papers

Donald E. Kalsched, Ph.D.

I would like to thank Gustav for his excellent paper and for his effort to write creatively, out of his own clinical experience with ‘Tom’, into the ‘gap’ he references between Jungian theory and practice. There are very few extended case descriptions in Jung's writings and many of us who have been profoundly helped by Jung's ideas as applied to our own psychology have had to struggle with the application of Jung's ideas about the inner world in relation to ‘borderline’ patients who experience interpretation as criticism or the boundaries of the psychoanalytic setup as a kind of re-traumatization. Gustav's paper provides us with a link between an intrapsychic, Jungian understanding and a relational one and in this way helps to fill in the ‘gap’ between Jung's theory and its application to those individuals who come to us with a background of severe early trauma.

I personally had a vivid experience of the ‘gap’ Gustav refers to when I was first in training at the Jung Institute in New York during the late 60's. Having had a fairly ‘classical’ Jungian analysis with a focus almost entirely on the inner world of dreams, and having benefited a great deal from this process, I tried to apply it clinically in my small practice at the Veterans Administration where I was a clinical intern. My patients there were all victims of severe battle trauma from the Vietnam War and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder was not yet described in the clinical literature.

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