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Ammaniti, M. (2009). Reply to Commentaries. Psychoanal. Dial., 19(5):585-587.

(2009). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 19(5):585-587

Reply to Commentaries

Massimo Ammaniti, M.D.

The comments of Emde and Reis are a further confirmation of the self asserting of the paradigm of intersubjectivity in psychotherapy and psychoanalysis. The roots of the paradigm can be traced back to Mead in the field of psychology and to Sullivan in psychoanalysis. But what gives further strength to the intersubjectivity paradigm is the validation that comes from the discovery—in neurobiology—of the mirror system. However, it is important to draw a distinction between a more immediate and automatic mode of interacting with other people and a second mode based on mentalizing, that is, the ability to explain and predict other people's behavior by attributing independent mental states to them. While the first mode of interacting is based on the mirror system, the second one seems to be connected to the Anterior Paracingulate Cortex. Of course these observations have important implications for psychoanalytic theory, not only for the developmental theory but also for the therapeutic technique.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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