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Smith, B.L. Tang, N.M. (2006). Different Differences: Revelation and Disclosure of Social Identity in the Psychoanalytic Situation. Psychoanal Q., 75(1):295-321.

(2006). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 75(1):295-321

Different Differences: Revelation and Disclosure of Social Identity in the Psychoanalytic Situation

Bruce L. Smith, Ph.D. and Nadine M. Tang, M.S.W.

The authors propose a taxonomy of social identities, suggesting that three different classifications of identities can be distinguished. These comprise those that are innate and visible, such as race or gender; those that are innate, but invisible, such as sexual orientation; and those that are acquired or achieved, such as marital status or political affiliation. The authors argue that each of these categories has different implications for the revelation or disclosure of aspects of the therapist's identity, as well as for transference-countertransference dynamics. These points are illustrated with brief clinical examples.

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