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(1984). Meeting of the Psychoanalytic Association of New York. Psychoanal Q., 53:346-347.

(1984). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 53:346-347

Meeting of the Psychoanalytic Association of New York


Dr. Blum examined the interactions between Toscanini and his musicians which contributed to their mutually ecstatic experiences and which might be helpful in better understanding the nature of idealizing relationships. Remarking that Toscanini was not a musician in the conventional sense (he neither composed nor performed), Dr. Blum discussed the mystical relationship between conductor and orchestra. In regard to motivation, Dr. Blum contrasted the excess and the deficit models of child development. In the excess model drives press for fulfillment, giving rise to wishes and fantasies which must be frustrated by the environment if the individual is to proceed along the developmental sequence toward forming an adult ego. This inhibition leads to representations which ultimately become the superego. When group settings are being considered, this theory leads to models based on projection of the superego onto the leader, with consequences first discussed by Freud in Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego. In the deficit model the drives are insufficient to motivate. The child requires supplementation from the environment (nurturance, empathy) in order to achieve situations of satisfaction. The importance of internalization, then, is not only prohibitive but complemental. If the complemental process should fail, there will be a corresponding failure in self-idealization, recognizable clinically as a lack of initiative for effective action in otherwise talented individuals.

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