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Shakow, D. (1960). The Recorded Psychoanalytic Interview as an Objective Approach to Research in Psychoanalysis. Psychoanal Q., 29:82-97.

(1960). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 29:82-97

The Recorded Psychoanalytic Interview as an Objective Approach to Research in Psychoanalysis

David Shakow, Ph.D.

Of the four major approaches to the study of psychoanalytic theory—the developmental prospective, the experimental (using animal or human subjects), the cross-cultural, and the psychoanalytic interview—it is the last, the retrospective approach, which I should like to examine as a source of data for the objective study of psychoanalytic theory.

My argument is based on research at the University of Illinois College of Medicine and at the National Institute of Mental Health. Although my past and present colleagues in these programs are intimately concerned with various aspects of this approach, they carry no responsibility for the specific thesis here expounded. Some of the points I shall make have, in one form or another, been made earlier by Benjamin (1), Escalona (4), and Kubie (8). I am also indebted to Rapaport for his chapter, The Structure of Psychoanalytic Theory (10).

The psychoanalytic method itself is important in the objective study of psychoanalytic theory for several reasons. First, the psychoanalytic interview most clearly manifests some of the basic phenomena upon which the theory rests.

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