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Fountain, G. (1992). The Psychoanalytic Study of the Child. XLIV, 1989: The Psychoanalyst's Use of Tact. William Sledge. Pp. 137-147.. Psychoanal Q., 61:314.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: The Psychoanalytic Study of the Child. XLIV, 1989: The Psychoanalyst's Use of Tact. William Sledge. Pp. 137-147.

(1992). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 61:314

The Psychoanalytic Study of the Child. XLIV, 1989: The Psychoanalyst's Use of Tact. William Sledge. Pp. 137-147.

Gerard Fountain

Sledge offers a helpful discussion of the meanings and applications of tact in analysis, with examples from analysis of an adult. Tact involves consideration of the level of an interpretation, the "depth" or accessibility of what is interpreted. A second consideration is sequence, the order in which material evolves and is interpreted to the patient. A groundwork must be laid for an interpretation. An interpretation or other intervention must be neutral, not taking sides with ego, id, or superego. Transference must be taken into account. And, although there is no place for vague or incomprehensible interpretation, sometimes a planned ambiguity can be useful; it "[allows] the patient to find his own level of response to an interpretation." What has been called "pseudo-tact," mere politeness or participation in the patient's avoidance and denial, is to be avoided.

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Article Citation

Fountain, G. (1992). The Psychoanalytic Study of the Child. XLIV, 1989. Psychoanal. Q., 61:314

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