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Krasner, R.F. (1983). Contem Porary Psychoanalysis. XVII, 1981. Imitative Elaboration on the Oral Reporting of Dreams. Patrick J. Mahoney. Pp. 350-358.. Psychoanal Q., 52:149-150.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Contem Porary Psychoanalysis. XVII, 1981. Imitative Elaboration on the Oral Reporting of Dreams. Patrick J. Mahoney. Pp. 350-358.

(1983). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 52:149-150

Contem Porary Psychoanalysis. XVII, 1981. Imitative Elaboration on the Oral Reporting of Dreams. Patrick J. Mahoney. Pp. 350-358.

Ronald F. Krasner

Mahoney's central thesis is that the way a dream is retold mimics its content. This elaboration he calls imitative elaboration, and he distinguishes it from Breznitz's primary, secondary, and tertiary revision as well as from Silber's secondary revision and secondary elaboration. Freud's ideas on the process of dream elaboration and revision are also briefly cited. In contradistinction to these views, Mahoney's thesis is that the part of the dream elaboration which appears in the recitation of the dream has its importance primarily in terms of the form of the oral elaboration. This mimetic elaboration is influenced by the primary process. It contains not the logical coherence of the classically defined secondary elaboration, but rather its own symbolic coherence to the fragmented dream material. The author presents clinical material illustrating these eoncepts. The backward recitation of the dreams—for example, speaking of the second dream first—reflects and is in fact imitative of the "backward" theme or anal preoccupations of the dreamer. Mahoney emphasizes that psychoanalysis, like archaeology, is as mcuh aware of the spatial organization and the relationships of its objects as it is of the objects themselves. While Mahoney does underline Freud's awareness of the importance of the form of the dream, he goes further

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in positing that the semantic content and narrative form have a mimetic relationship. The article concludes with a discussion of the imitative form in events such as ideational mimetics, hysterical symptomatology, and defensive reactions.

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Article Citation

Krasner, R.F. (1983). Contem Porary Psychoanalysis. XVII, 1981.. Psychoanal. Q., 52:149-150

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