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Bornstein, M. (1983). Epilogue. Psychoanal. Inq., 3(2):349.

(1983). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 3(2):349


Melvin Bornstein, M.D.

Freud started out with a conception of adult problems arising from adult disturbances. As the talking cure proceeded, his patient's memories moved deeper into the past. Suddenly the influences of the past on the present were vigorously illuminated. Memories became the causal component of neuroses. Since that time, the significance of the past has differentiated psychoanalysis from all psychologies that preceded it. By illuminating the past, the cause of present problems could be mastered. This premis crystallized the science and sparked people's imagination. The term infantile amnesia became commonplace in scientific circles.

As frequently happens, a powerful scholarly idea becomes a truism except to those who define and apply the idea in a clinical and technical sense. Thus, the accepted insights about construction and reconstruction have come under review and scrutiny. What was so clear has become a topic for correction and relearning. We thus conclude from these papers that construction and reconstruction reflect an active ongoing process that promises to serve as one more source of growth for psychoanalysis and its integration with biology, history, and philosophy.

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