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Loden, S. (2003). The Fate of the Dream in Contemporary Psychoanalysis. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 51(1):43-70.

(2003). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 51(1):43-70

The Fate of the Dream in Contemporary Psychoanalysis

Susan Loden

Freud's metapsychology of dream formation has implicitly been discarded, as indicated in a brief review of trends in psychoanalytic thinking about dreams, with a focus on the relationship of the dream process to ego capacities. The current bias toward exclusive emphasis on the exploration of the analytic relationship and the transference has evolved at the expense of classical, in-depth dream interpretation, and, by extension, at the expense of strengthening the patient's capacity for self-inquiry. This trend is shown to be especially evident in the treatment of borderline patients, who today are believed by many analysts to misuse the dream in the analytic situation. An extended clinical example of a borderline patient with whom an unmodified Freudian associative technique of dream interpretation is used with good outcome illustrates the author's contrary conviction. In clinical practice, we should neglect neither the uniqueness of the dream as a central intrapsychic event nor the Freudian art of total dream analysis.

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