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Krasner, R.F. (1983). Contemporary Psychoanalysis. XVII, 1981: Countertransference and the Therapeutic Turmoil. Peter L. Giovacchini. Pp. 565-594.. Psychoanal Q., 52:654.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Contemporary Psychoanalysis. XVII, 1981: Countertransference and the Therapeutic Turmoil. Peter L. Giovacchini. Pp. 565-594.

(1983). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 52:654

Contemporary Psychoanalysis. XVII, 1981: Countertransference and the Therapeutic Turmoil. Peter L. Giovacchini. Pp. 565-594.

Ronald F. Krasner

Giovacchini defines countertransference as a ubiquitous emotional reaction in the analyst to the patient which is found in every analytic interaction. His purpose in this paper is to clarify this concept so that the transference-counter-transference axis may be turned to therapeutic advantage, rather than being allowed to interrupt the flow of the analysis. Toward classification, Giovacchini proposes two major categories: homogeneous—those reactions that might be expected to occur in most analysts, given certain circumstances; and idiosyncratic—those reactions that are directly attributable to the unique qualities of the analyst's background and characte makeup, which in some instances reflect the analyst's unresolved psychopathology. Four different types of homogeneous reactions are illustrated through clinical examples. Countertransference and the analyst's ego ideal constitute one situation in which the analyst finds her or his values threatened. Countertransference and existential anxiety refers to instances when the analyst's self-representation, that is, the analyst's identity, is under attack. When patients have basic lacks in character structure, countertransference reactions are illustrated through clinical examples. Countertransference and the fourth type, countertransference and the need to be reasonable, is illustrated by the case of a patient who would not leave at the end of an hour. In his discussion section, Giovacchini differentiates between the countertransferences commonly encountered in treating neurosis and those that are evoked by a psychotic transference. Finally, the therapist's effect on the patient, as well as the patient's response to this, is explored.

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Article Citation

Krasner, R.F. (1983). Contemporary Psychoanalysis. XVII, 1981. Psychoanal. Q., 52:654

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