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Stern, S. (2009). Session Frequency and the Definition of Psychoanalysis. Psychoanal. Dial., 19(6):639-655.

(2009). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 19(6):639-655

Session Frequency and the Definition of Psychoanalysis

Steven Stern, Psy.D.

Psychoanalysis as a field is suffering in part because we remain locked into a definition of psychoanalysis based on what Gill (1984) called its “extrinsic” criteria—especially session frequency. I argue that organized psychoanalysis needs to redefine what it means to practice psychoanalysis. Such a redefinition is dictated not only by current realities of the marketplace but also by contemporary theory, which emphasizes the co-created, nonlinear nature of the analytic relationship. Some implications of this redefinition (a) for the distinction between psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic therapy, and (b) for analytic training, are briefly considered.

[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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