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Kernberg, O.F. (1995). Fundamentals of Psychoanalytic Technique. By R. Horacio Etchegoyen. New York: Brunner/Mazel, 1991, 864 pp., $100.00.. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 43:601-605.

(1995). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 43:601-605

Fundamentals of Psychoanalytic Technique. By R. Horacio Etchegoyen. New York: Brunner/Mazel, 1991, 864 pp., $100.00.

Review by:
Otto F. Kernberg

R. Horacio Etchegoyen has written a splendid textbook on psychoanalytic technique—thoughtful, extensive in is coverage, authoritative without being polemical, deep in insights that reflect the author's extensive clinical experience. Robert Wallerstein in his introduction appropriately stresses the author's open-mindedness and comprehensiveness. Etchegoyen opens by candidly acknowledging his Kleinian bias and then proceeds to an exploration of a broad spectrum of alternative approaches to his subject. If Kleinian ideas receive the greatest emphasis, major contributions from ego psychologists, British Independents, interpersonalists, and Lacanians also receive their due.

The Fundamentals of Psychoanalytic Technique begins with a review of previous efforts to present a synthesis of psychoanalytic technique, its origins in the cathartic method, indications and contraindications, and analyzability. Etchegoyen criticizes convincingly the recent tendency to perceive the analyst/analysand relationship as “symmetrical” and in this context takes issue with the “intersubjective” approach.

The second section deals with the history and concept of transference, the relationship between transference and resistance, and between character defenses and transference resistances. The Lacanian approach to transference analysis is presented in historical perspective and critically examined. Transference neurosis, different types of transferences under varying clinical conditions, and transference psychosis are explored from Kleinian, ego psychological, and interpersonal perspectives. A chapter on perverse transferences opens the exploration of Donald Meltzer's contributions to technique. The analysis of oedipal transferences, the controversial literature regarding symbiotic transferences, and the possibility of analysis of preverbal experiences and traumas in the transference are explored, with particular emphasis on the contributions of Melanie Klein, D. W. Winnicott, and Harold Searles. The relationship between the therapeutic alliance and transference regression, and the contrasting approaches to this relationship within ego psychology and object relations approaches are carefully documented. A chapter on the application of all these concepts to child analysis reviews the historical controversies involving the approaches of Anna Freud and Melanie Klein.

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