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Movahedi, S. (2015). Contextualized Language and Transferential Aspects of Context. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 63(4):641-670.

(2015). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 63(4):641-670

Contextualized Language and Transferential Aspects of Context

Siamak Movahedi

The analytic process, in which the patient's and the analyst's internal characters struggle to create a script through the analysand's mouth and the analyst's pen, resembles Pirandello's Six Characters in Search of an Author (1921): different characters come together on the analytic stage to rehearse the analyst's role as coauthor of a play that depicts the ongoing analytic saga. To compose the text for the interplay of characters, the author must search for contexts that may confer meaning upon the words and actions of characters. This involves a search for a mise en scène (stage) that will assign mise en sens (meaning) to the actors' role-specific dialogue. Yet mise en scène, in the theatrical sense, is a set of iconic signs set with its own décor, props, and costumes. in contrast, the psychoanalytic scene is a symbolic stage for the play of words—words that may contain unconscious codes for switching into particular language games. A clinical case report describes a struggle with the contextual analysis of an aspect of a treatment that involved reported episodes of verbal indiscretions “taken out of context” with unwanted consequences.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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