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Bicudo, V.L. (1974). A Discussion of the Paper by H. S. Klein on 'Transference and Defence in Manic States'. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 55:269-271.

(1974). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 55:269-271

A Discussion of the Paper by H. S. Klein on 'Transference and Defence in Manic States'

Virginia Leone Bicudo

Thanks to the impressive contributions of Dr Bion, and influenced by the presence of Mr Frank Philips in São Paulo, I am aware that in a discussion about clinical material one must take into consideration that each analyst will rely on different theories, on the individualized use of those theories, and on a varying clinical approach. In other words, an analyst who wishes to convey something of his work to colleagues is at a disadvantage, or his colleagues are, when the terms he uses are very different from those which they themselves may use. Having thus stated some of my concern, I will now go on to comment on Dr Klein's paper.

In accordance with Dr Klein's view (this issue) I would like to emphasize that in mania the transference is characterized by attempts on the part of the patient to achieve gratification by massive projective identification while feeling that there exists an omnipotent object capable of being the container for his intolerable anxieties. These anxieties are bound up with fantasies, desires and memories which demand unconditional satisfaction from, and at the cost of, the analyst.

Considering that transference implies a movement of feeling and ideas from one sphere of applicability to another (described by Bion (1965) as 'rigid motions'), we understand that the manic patient tries to survive his anxieties by transforming the analyst into a permanent container of his omnipotent bad parts. The patient believes that this is the way to rid himself forever of being internally persecuted.

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