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Meregnani, A. Ferro, A. (1995). Relational Perspectives in Psychoanalysis. Neil J. Skolnick and Susan C. Warshaw (eds.) New York: The Analytic Press, 1992, xxix + 363 pp.. Psychoanal. Rev., 82(2):332-337.

(1995). Psychoanalytic Review, 82(2):332-337

Relational Perspectives in Psychoanalysis. Neil J. Skolnick and Susan C. Warshaw (eds.) New York: The Analytic Press, 1992, xxix + 363 pp.

Review by:
Anna Meregnani

Antonino Ferro

In his recent article “The Current Status of Psychoanalysis(1993), Kernberg presents a panorama of issues which have developed in the United States in the last years which prove that there is a greater mutual influence between American and European orientations. We find that “Relational Perspectives in Psychoanalysis” is a confirmation that the gap is getting narrower and that the great interest on the theme of relation constitutes the main point of convergence.

We have in mind a few recent papers by Italian authors who share many elements that are common to the contributors of this book, starting from the notion—as E. Ghent writes in the foreword—that human relations play the central role both in development and in psychopathology and from the rejection of classical metapsychology according to which two biologically given instincts are the determinants of all human motivation.

E. Ghent reminds us that in 1983 the publication of two very significant works can be considered a landmark in the evolution of psychoanalytic thinking: one paper by M. Gill who proposed “a person point of view to define a position opposed to classical metapsychology” and a book by Greenberg and Mitchell who were able to demarcate two mutually exclusive models of minds: a drive/structure model and a relational/structure model. The shift from an intrapsychic to a relational model or, in other words, from a one-person to a two-person psychology model is the principal concern of all the authors.

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