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Szecsödy, I. (1994). Supervision–a complex tool for psychoanalytic training. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 17(2):119-129.

(1994). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 17(2):119-129

Supervision–a complex tool for psychoanalytic training

Imre Szecsödy, M.D.

Davis M. Sachs opened his introductory paper at the Sixth IPA Conference of Training Analysts, 1993, in Amsterdam, with the following words: “Psychoanalytic education rests on a three-legged, educational stool; the training analysis, didactic courses and supervision. Such stools have a tendency toward instability whenever undue weight is placed upon one leg”. This system has been an official requirement in the training of candidates since 1924; still the topic of supervision has, before 1993, never been considered at a Conference of Training Analysis. “Reading the anonymous vignettes which we have received from the participants of the Conference, the Organizing Committee became convinced that the difficulty of the task (of supervision) has been greatly underestimated by the profession. It is remarkable that neither training in doing supervision nor study of the existing literature is required of new training analysts. Apparently, the traditional assumption has been that the training analysts simply have the ability supervise”. From a paper prepared by two candidates representing IPSO, Dr. Sachs paraphrased in the following way: “They are concerned that supervisors do not appreciate the complexity of the social structure in which they (the candidates) are living. They want the supervisor to appreciate the relationship they have to the Institute; the economic pressures under which they function; (as well as that) their concerns are not (only) ‘neurotic’ but (also) realistic problems which need to be respected….

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