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After you perform a search, you can sort the articles by Source. This will rearrange the results of your search, displaying articles according to their appearance in journals and books. This feature is useful for tracing psychoanalytic concepts in a specific psychoanalytic tradition.

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Harris, M. (2011). Chapter Nineteen: Therapeutic consultations (1966). The Tavistock Model: Papers on Child Development and Psychoanalytic Training, 289-304.

Harris, M. (2011). Chapter Nineteen: Therapeutic consultations (1966). The Tavistock Model: Papers on Child Development and Psychoanalytic Training, 289-304

Chapter Nineteen: Therapeutic consultations (1966) Book Information Previous Up Next

Martha Harris

A type of consultation is described in which the containing role of the therapist is similar in some ways to that of the observer in baby observation, yet may be effective in a few brief sessions. A genuine interest, conveyed without any claim to “magical expertise”, can aid in restoring the parents' own creativity, putting them back in touch with their own “unique knowledge of themselves and their child”. The main example given is of Willie, a hyperactive toddler displaying worrying symptoms, which began to clear once a more vital type of movement was introduced by his father in the shape of a swing, acting as a container for “the situation” between mother and child. The author gives an account in hindsight of the psychodynamics (including Bick's “skin” theory), but stresses that it is not the “frame of reference” that is important, but rather, the re-linking within the family unit as a result of the containing interest.

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