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Gonchar, J. (1992). Psychoanalysis and Contemporary Thought. XIII, 1990: Mirroring Processes, Hypnotic Processes, and Multiple Personality. Michael Ferguson. Pp. 417-450.. Psychoanal Q., 61:319-320.

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Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Psychoanalysis and Contemporary Thought. XIII, 1990: Mirroring Processes, Hypnotic Processes, and Multiple Personality. Michael Ferguson. Pp. 417-450.

(1992). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 61:319-320

Psychoanalysis and Contemporary Thought. XIII, 1990: Mirroring Processes, Hypnotic Processes, and Multiple Personality. Michael Ferguson. Pp. 417-450.

Joel Gonchar

The author examines the phenomenon of multiple personality from a self psychology perspective. His central thesis is that multiple personality as seen in the clinician's office is a form of mirror transference. These patients seek what was denied them as children: acceptance, recognition, and confirmation. Although hypnosis aimed at unifying the different personalities is the goal of most treatment, the author believes that the mirror transference relationship in the context of the hypnosis is the crucial element in making the treatment effective. Exploring case examples from the literature, he shows in one case how the goal of reintegration is prepared for by the therapist through the acceptance and legitimization of the anger experienced by the "alter self." Other cases are used to illustrate that hypnosis itself


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is a mirroring response to the patient's unconscious and is only helpful in an empathic environment of mirroring self objects. The treatment requires the therapist to recognize that each alter self is seeking a different kind of self object for acceptance or mirroring response. The author also stresses the conceptual distinction between splitting and the dissociation involved in hypnosis, the former being a permanent alteration in the psychic organization, while the latter is temporary and easily reversible.


WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to copy, distribute or circulate it in any form.
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Article Citation

Gonchar, J. (1992). Psychoanalysis and Contemporary Thought. XIII, 1990. Psychoanal. Q., 61:319-320

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WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the subscriber to PEP Web and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to copy, distribute or circulate it in any form whatsoever.