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Kluzer, G. (1992). Antonello Correale. Il campo istituzionale. Borla, Roma, 1991, 281 pages, 30.000 lire.. Rivista Psicoanal., 38(1):278-282.

(1992). Rivista di Psicoanalisi, 38(1):278-282

Antonello Correale. Il campo istituzionale. Borla, Roma, 1991, 281 pages, 30.000 lire. Language Translation

Review by:
Giampaolo Kluzer

The Author's personal interpretation of K. Lewin's theory of the field is the origin of his application of the concept to psychiatric institutional groups which operate in Italy both with out-patients and in hospitals. Thus although his ideas contain various original nuances, he places himself in the same camp as other authors, both Italian (Corrao, Neri, Barnà) and foreign (Willy and Madeleine Baranger), who have referred to the same concept in the course of their reflections on psychoanalysis, both at an individual and group level. Thus in Correale's opinion, the field is “a comprehensive agglomeration of the mental elements activated in the group, with its specific emotional, climatic and atmospheric connotations”. And again: “An area of fantasies, ideas and common experiences, a scenario, a narration and not a roleplay”.

The Author's interest in and experience of working with small autonomous groups is the main reason why he pays particular attention to these characteristics of the group field, both in a synchronic and diachronic sense. As the Author rightly points out in the first two chapters, observing group dynamics from such a viewpoint is different from doing so from a sociological or socioanalytic angle (the latter has been developed particularly by Elliot Jacques, Isabel Menzies Lyth and by Franco Fornari in Italy).

In institutional groups of psychiatric équipes, the dynamic of the field is activated above all by the impact that mental illness exerts on them. Indeed one very interesting chapter is entitled “La malattia e il gruppo” (Illness and the Group). In this chapter a very interesting parallel is drawn between these dynamics and those that operate between the individual and the group, which can be witnessed in small, psychoanalytically oriented groups.

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