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(1986). Meeting of the New York Psychoanalytic Society. Psychoanal Q., 55:373-374.

(1986). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 55:373-374

Meeting of the New York Psychoanalytic Society

November 13, 1984. THE USE OF THE SELF: NOTES ON THE OPERATION OF THE ANALYZING INSTRUMENT. Theodore J. Jacobs, M.D.

Dr. Jacobs reviewed Isakower's concept of the analyzing instrument in light of current knowledge about the role of nonverbal behavior in the analytic situation. Whereas Isakower's model was that of a system operating primarily through the verbal-auditory spheres, it seems justified now to regard the analyzing instrument as a multichannel system containing components that register not only verbal and acoustic signals, but also movement patterns, automatic responses, and visual stimuli.

To illustrate his thesis, Dr. Jacobs cited several clinical examples. The first centered on the analysis of a patient's fleeting facial expression observed in the waiting room. Focusing on this momentary reaction opened up a flood of feelings concerning the analyst's appearance. Analysis of this strong transference reaction was instrumental in recovering material relating to the illness and deterioration of the patient's father. In the second example, the patient had observed the analyst parking his car just prior to the start of the hour and by means of gestures and motions on the couch made reference to what he had witnessed. Analysis of the experience led to a crucial memory from adolescence concerning the patient's relationship with a disappointing father. In the third case, the patient's body language provided a clue to an important, long-forgotten experience that

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