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(1962). Meetings of the New York Psychoanalytic Society. Psychoanal Q., 31:300-301.

(1962). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 31:300-301

Meetings of the New York Psychoanalytic Society

December 19, 1961. THE STRUCTURING OF DRIVE AND REALITY. DAVID RAPAPORT'S CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE SCIENCE OF PSYCHOLOGY. Merton M. Gill, M.D. and George S. Klein, Ph.D.

Two major and recurrent unifying themes run through Rapaport's writings: the question of how thought becomes socialized, logical, and goal-directed; and the more general, though clearly related, question of how freedom is achieved from the imperious demands of instinctual drives on the one hand and of reality on the other. It is the ego which intervenes between these two forces, but is not merely their resultant; it is shaped by their interaction but also achieves partial independence from them. Ego structure he described as characterized by stability, capacity for delay, and inhibition, and as having other abiding characteristics. Rapaport systematized many diverse data which clarified the conditions under which ego structures were maintained, weakened, or disintegrated, and concluded that ego structure depends in part on external stimulation (borrowing from Piaget) but also on internal stimuli.

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