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Fordham, M. Samuels, A. (1983). Correspondence. J. Anal. Psychol., 28(4):377-379.

(1983). Journal of Analytical Psychology, 28(4):377-379


Michael Fordham and Andrew Samuels

May I Comment on the discussion of Redfearn's paper, ‘Ego and self: terminology’ which appeared in this journal (Vol. 28, 2)?

If Schwartz-Salant wants to assert that there is a spirit of Jung that Redfearn violates we can consider whether that is true and whether the violation is worthwhile or not. First of all, Jung claimed that analytical psychology is a science and Redfearn's procedure could not be called unscientific. Also, to separate ego from self is to follow Jung, who did just that when he wrote a separate definition of the self for the Collected Works, while earlier editions of Psychological Types did not contain one.

Jacoby's contribution is of a different and more reflective kind. I think that he is right to find that ‘one can not see Kohut's self as simply analogous with the Jungian concept of the ego’. That was my impression when I took part in a symposium on the self in San Francisco when a Kohutian psychoanalyst was also speaking.

The importance of Schwartz-Salant's contribution is that he uses symbolic forms which express the self, whereas Redfearn seeks to define the self clearly. To do so he uses a comparative method which one could call horizontal. I cannot find that he is muddled.

I am struck by the neglect, in the discussion, of Jung's distinction between directed and undirected thinking (primary and secondary process or diacritic and metaphorical-symbolic thinking in psychoanalysis). Definition belongs to the former and does not seek to express the self, but by setting boundaries to the meaning of words is essentially excluding.

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