Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To see translations of Freud SE or GW…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

When you hover your mouse over a paragraph of the Standard Edition (SE) long enough, the corresponding text from Gesammelte Werke slides from the bottom of the PEP-Web window, and vice versa.

If the slide up window bothers you, you can turn it off by checking the box “Turn off Translations” in the slide-up. But if you’ve turned it off, how do you turn it back on? The option to turn off the translations only is effective for the current session (it uses a stored cookie in your browser). So the easiest way to turn it back on again is to close your browser (all open windows), and reopen it.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Torvanger, M.S. (2016). Delving into psychoanalytic texts: the notion of the reading third. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 39(1):3-12.

(2016). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 39(1):3-12


Delving into psychoanalytic texts: the notion of the reading third

Merete Sæbø Torvanger

In this article I introduce the notion of the reading third, which evolves during the reading process. The idea came to my mind while studying Wolfgang Iser’s theory of the reading process, and already knowing about Thomas Ogden’s concept of the analytic third: What is experienced, shaped and understood while reading a text? The notion of the reading third is based on psychoanalytic theory and method like just Ogden’s concept, and on the aesthetic response theory of Iser. Elaborating the reading third, I combine two modes of reading: one understanding and interpreting, and one floating and experiencing mode. To these modes I add two different understandings of truth. The first mode is connected to a traditional, objective and visible truth. The latter mode relies on Wilfred Bion’s concept of O, a special kind of evasive, ephemeral truth. The reading third takes and loses form as one reads, accentuating reading as a highly creative activity, where each reading elicits different understandings, experiences and truths. I give examples of such a way of reading psychoanalytic texts like those of Bion and a work of fiction, Henry James’ short novel The Turn of the Screw.

[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.]

Copyright © 2021, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.