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(1990). Chapter 13: The Authors Respond. Child and Adolescent Analysis: Its Significance for Clinical Work with Adults, 181-202.

(1990). Chapter 13: The Authors Respond. Child and Adolescent Analysis: Its Significance for Clinical Work with Adults , 181-202

Chapter 13: The Authors Respond Book Information Previous Up Next

Melvin A. Scharfman, M.D.

A number of interesting questions have been, raised by the discussants about the contributions from child to adult analysis. One issue raised was whether or not Melanie Klein really contributed very much with her emphasis on preoedipal attachments and as a stimulus to the beginning of object relations theory. Certainly her contributions long predated Freud's 1931 paper, “Female Sexuality”, and the other contributions cited. Whether or not object relations theory continues to find a prominent place in analytic theory, it seems to me that it cannot arbitrarily be excluded from a historical review.

A question was also raised about whether or not Anna Freud's work, The Ego and the Mechanisms of Defence, really came from child analysis. Of course her work did not develop in a vacuum. She was familiar not only with her father's work but with the work of Alexander and Fenichel. However, her systematic organization and presentation of the operation of defenses throughout childhood and the enumeration of defense mechanisms is a contribution in and of itself. There is no doubt that it was a turning point which has deeply influenced analytic technique ever since. Her contributions to the elaboration of our understanding of prepuberty and puberty were also significant. Her clinical examples are from child analysis.

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