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Hart, H.S. (2012). Reversible Perspective and Splitting in Time. Psychoanal Q., 81(1):111-126.

(2012). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 81(1):111-126

Reversible Perspective and Splitting in Time

Helen Schoenhals Hart

The element of time—the experience of it and the defensive use of it—is explored in conjunction with the use of reversible perspective as a psychotic defense. Clinical material from a long analysis illustrates how a psychotic patient used the reversible perspective, with its static splitting, to abolish the experience of time. When he improved and the reversible perspective became less effective for him, he replaced it with a more dynamic splitting mechanism using time gaps. With further improvement, the patient began to experience the passage of time, and along with it the excruciating pain of separation, envy, and loss.

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