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Grand, S. (2002). Between the Reader and the Read: Commentary on Paper by Elizabeth F. Howell. Psychoanal. Dial., 12(6):959-970.

(2002). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 12(6):959-970

Between the Reader and the Read: Commentary on Paper by Elizabeth F. Howell Related Papers

Sue Grand, Ph.D.

In this discussion, I nest Howell's work in a broader psychoanalytic look at trauma and dissociation. I approach Howell's paper as a trauma narrative situated in the context of emergent relational theory and practice. A critique is offered that focuses on the way trauma is vocalized and inscribed in psychoanalytic writing and reading. In particular, I examine the problematic aspects of that inscription and suggest that trauma resists psychoanalytic articulation in both writing and reading. I suggest that, as an alternative model, psychoanalytic reading must become psychoanalytic witnessing. Such witnessing is demonstrated in the analysis of style and content in Howell's work. In this context, contemporary definitions of trauma and dissociation are challenged, insofar as they occlude the traumatic history they attempt to elucidate.

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