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Valenstein, A.F. (1989). Pre-Oedipal Reconstructions in Psychoanalysis. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 70:433-442.

(1989). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 70:433-442

Pre-Oedipal Reconstructions in Psychoanalysis

Arthur F. Valenstein


The current revitalization of reconstruction as concept and technical procedure is attributable to the widened scope of psychoanalytic practice and, concomitantly, the deepening interest in early pre-oedipal development. Very early experience tends to be recapitulated through affectively coloured re-enactments in the transference rather than through verbalizable memories or reminiscences at a secondary process level. Reconstruction necessarily enters into the therapeutic process when pivotal neurosogenetic anlage are so early developmentally that they are inaccessible to verbal recovery. It then follows that only through the process of reconstruction can such 'unrecoverable' gaps be filled in and made accessible to genetic formulation and interpretation. These issues are enlarged upon and discussed through an illustrative case report, following which there is a brief consideration of the integrative value of reconstruction in the psychoanalytic therapeutic process.

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