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Newirth, J. (2020). Orphans of the Real—Revisited. Canadian J. Psychoanal., 28(2):172-196.

(2020). Canadian Journal of Psychoanalysis, 28(2):172-196

Orphans of the Real—Revisited Related Papers

Joseph Newirth

“Orphans of the Real” refers to people who are unable to utilize reverie and dream-like unconscious processes in creating meaning. They live in a concrete world of what is, flooded by beta elements, symbolic or psychic equivalents. This article integrates Bionian concepts of symbolization, reverie, the container/contained, and Winnicott's concept of transitional experiences within a relational paradigm. An extensive clinical example is presented in which there is a breakdown of the container/contained function with analyst and patient first becoming merged in meaningless and depressive affects, slowly becoming able to recover the ability to think and create meaning through the use of reverie and the development of mutual dream-like process of creating subjective meaning. This article focuses on the transformation of the concrete experiences of the paranoid-schizoid position into the symbolic experiences of the depressive experience through the transformation of concrete experiences and enactments within the transference-countertransference relationship into metaphorical symbolic experiences.

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