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Cooper, S.H. (1996). Further Remarks on Papers by Spezzano and Gerson. Psychoanal. Dial., 6(6):895-901.

(1996). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 6(6):895-901

Further Remarks on Papers by Spezzano and Gerson

Steven H. Cooper, Ph.D.

My discussion (cooper, 1996) of the papers by gerson (1996) and Spezzano (1996) aimed to elaborate some of the overlap and contrast that can result when different analysts view the sides of the one- versus two-person dichotomy. I was surprised to be thought of Spezzano as being on a “team” that tried to restore the balance of virtue in response to a one-person psychology rather than preserve the virtue of his attempt at developing the intrapsychic-intersubjective dialectic. In my view, Aron (1996) has accurately described my stance as elaborating Gill's (1983, 1994) position that so-called one- and two-person psychologies operate dialectically. Among the many implications of this position is that homeostasis takes place in a particular relational context and that self-protection always occurs within an intersubjective context.

My sense is that we each view our own words as trying to develop the interpersonal-intrapsychic dialectic and that we each see the other as looking to choose sides, play ball or rumble, our weapons being baseball anecdotes, dichotomies, and polarities. At times, this can and did become the zero-sum game that Spezzano described—what I would call a “who started it first” game or a cause-effect problem.

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