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Harris, A. (2019). Discussion: “Airless Worlds: The Traumatic Sequalae of Identification with Parental Negation” Steven Stern. Psychoanal. Dial., 29(4):451-459.

(2019). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 29(4):451-459

Discussion: “Airless Worlds: The Traumatic Sequalae of Identification with Parental Negation” Steven Stern

Adrienne Harris, Ph.D.

Discussion of Stern’s essay (this issue) on the clinical demands of work with disturbed patients with catastrophic gaps in functioning stresses a number of perspectives on gaps and disavowal with patients across a wide spectrum. Gaps, absences, negation and dissociative states are all linked to the phenomena Stern is describing. The strong influences of Ferenczi are stressed in this discussion and the sometimes contradictory clinical experience which is both of absence and invasive presence. Patients of the sort Stern is describing are both haunted and evacuated.

[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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