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After you perform a search, you can sort the articles by Source. This will rearrange the results of your search, displaying articles according to their appearance in journals and books. This feature is useful for tracing psychoanalytic concepts in a specific psychoanalytic tradition.

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Norman, J. (1991). The Analytic Frame, Theatrical Understanding, and Interpretation in Child Analysis. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 14(2):139-155.

(1991). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 14(2):139-155

The Analytic Frame, Theatrical Understanding, and Interpretation in Child Analysis

Johan Norman


What is specific to psychoanalysis? We speak of the active factors but what does this signify? Active on what, when and how?

I will begin by looking more closely at a phenomenon that has struck me as being highly specific, as well as remarkable, and which can illuminate some of the basic elements that are at work in psychoanalysis. I refer to what happens at the first meeting. This spotlights the analytic frame, in particular the presence of the analyst as well as that which is activated in the analyst, referred to here as ‘the analytic instrument’.

Then I will draw attention to the psychoanalytic setting as a stage for the performance of the transference and also to the dual meaning of the concept of interpretation, which is used to refer both to the overall interpretation formed by the analyst in the analytic instrument and to the fragments of this total picture that the analyst verbalizes for the patient.

Finally, I will illustrate how the contribution of the analyst ultimatelybecomes superfluous when the patient gains more open access to the unconscious.

The First Meeting

When I met my patient, Olle, for the first time, I was reminded of a phenomenon with which we are all familiar.

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