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Aguayo, J. (1997). Historicising The Origins Of Kleinian Psychoanalysis: Klein's Analytic And Patronal Relationships With Ferenczi, Abraham And Jones, 1914-1927. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 78:1165-1182.

(1997). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 78:1165-1182

Historicising The Origins Of Kleinian Psychoanalysis: Klein's Analytic And Patronal Relationships With Ferenczi, Abraham And Jones, 1914-1927

Joseph Aguayo

Historical examination of Klein's clinical synthesis through three crucial analytic relationships enables the author to account for the way in which the cultural background —gender, politics and textual analysis—informs theory formation. Klein's analysis with Ferenczi led to her work with children and self-analysis. With Abraham, she arrived at ideas about the origins of neurosis, linking severely disturbed with infantile states of mind. The author argues that the role of the cultural background must be explicated since Klein's initial clinical cohort existed in a Germany ravaged by starvation and absent fathers, which figured in the distinctive significance of the mother-child relationship. Klein's play technique involving toys understood it as the exteriorisation of the child's fantasy life, leading to fresh hypotheses about the early child. By 1925, her work collided with the interests of Sigmund and Anna Freud, who were in the throes of a succession crisis. It was imperative to establish Anna as the new ‘pre-eminent’ Freud, leading to hasty publication and direct critique of Klein's child technique. Through the intercession of Ernest Jones, who provided her with much needed support by 1927, the first shots of the Freud-Klein controversy were fired when Klein, propelled to centre stage in the international movement, established her reputation in London.

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