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Pulver, S.E. Levine, H.B. (1992). Freudian and Kleinian Theory: A Dialogue of Comparative Perspectives. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 40:801-826.

(1992). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 40:801-826

Freudian and Kleinian Theory: A Dialogue of Comparative Perspectives

Sidney E. Pulver, M.D. and Howard B. Levine, M.D.

IN HIS OPENING REMARKS, Pulver reviewed Kernberg's (1969) critique of Kleinian theory and outlined some of the significant events in the life of Melanie Klein: early object losses and subsequent depressions, relocations from Budapest to Berlin to London, and analyses with Ferenczi and Abraham.

Part 1

Weinshel presented the following case material:

Mrs. D. was a striking, attractive, although uncomfortable seemingly aloof, divorced woman in her mid-thirties, the mother of a thirteen-year-old-son. She sought analysis for low self-esteem, moodiness, depression, and an inability to work or love with satisfaction, comfort, or pleasure. The youngest of three sisters, she came from a socially prominent family. Her father, a glamorous figure in her eyes, died suddenly and unexpectedly when Mrs. D. was fourteen years old. His death, "the worst trauma of my life," was compounded by the discovery that he had squandered almost all of the family fortune on mistresses and gambling. Although Mrs. D.'s extended family provided ample financial assistance, this double loss of the father was a severe shock for the patient.

In contrast to her beloved father, Mrs. D. portrayed her mother as beautiful, vain, impatient, superficial, and emotionally unavailable. Mother, who seemed to be distracted and disinterested in her husband and family and preferred to let the children be cared for by the servants, "never talked" to her and was "not there."

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