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Lewin, B.D. (1955). Dream Psychology and the Analytic Situation. Psychoanal Q., 24:169-199.

(1955). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 24:169-199

Dream Psychology and the Analytic Situation

Bertram D. Lewin, M.D.

This paper will try to apply some of our knowledge and theory about sleep and the dream to an understanding of the analytic situation, which is here defined, empirically, as the familiar standard hour, or loosely, as 'what happens on the couch'; and sometimes the word 'couch' will be used metaphorically as synonymous with 'analytic situation'. Included in the idea of analytic situation are the phenomena of free association, resistance, transference, repetition, and others well known and generally admitted as working concepts.

Genetically, the analytic situation is an altered hypnotic situation, as the analytic hour is an altered hypnotic session. The analytic patient takes his origin from the hypnotic patient, for originally Freud's patients were attracted to therapy by their knowledge of cures due to hypnosis. The development of analysis from hypnosis has been studied and told with much detail and perspicacity by Ernest Jones (1953). It seems that some patients could not be hypnotized, or they 'countersuggested' too vigorously; that is, they had a resistance to being hypnotized or, more likely, a fear of being put to sleep.

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