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Lindell, J. (2002). Vapaan Assosiaation Paluu. (The return of free association). Marita Torsti. Helsinki: Yliopistopaino, 2001. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 25(1):69-72.

(2002). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 25(1):69-72

Vapaan Assosiaation Paluu. (The return of free association). Marita Torsti. Helsinki: Yliopistopaino, 2001 Related Papers

Review by:
Juhani Lindell

Few psychoanalysts in Finland have ventured to build a theory of their own. Marita Torsti (Born 1935) is one of them. Her book, Vapaan assosiaation paluu (“The Return of Free Association”) brings together her papers, reports and commentaries over the last twenty years.

Torsti's wide-ranging studies deal mainly with borderline cases, psychosomatics, sexuality, sexual identity, femininity, maternity and the symbolization process, both as such and in these contexts. She also touches on depression, the ego ideal and phallicism. In her article, “Quo Vadis, Psychoanalysis”, which was also published on the web site of the International Psychoanalytical Association, Torsti expresses her opinions on the identity and future orientation of psychoanalysis. The title of the book, “The Return of Free Association” reflects the author's views on the true identity, method and objective of psychoanalysis.

Although the bulk of the book's contents deals with psychotherapy, psychoanalysis and femininity, the peak of the collection is the chapter On the symbolization process of femininity and its disturbances and At the sources of the symbolization process. The psychoanalyst as an observer of early trauma based on Torsti's own observational research with children's drawings as illustrative material. The article presents Torsti's own studies, theoretical results and conceptualizations on how a boy's “phallic drive amplitude” and a girl's “internal-genital drive amplitude” begin to be organized and appear first in the movements of the hand, then in drawings and finally in the contents of the drawings.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

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