Duncan Cartwright's Containing states of mind: exploring Bion's 'container PDF

By Duncan Cartwright

ISBN-10: 1583918795

ISBN-13: 9781583918791

Wilfred Bion’s insights into the analytic method have had a profound impact on how psychoanalysts and psychotherapists comprehend emotional switch and pathological psychological states. one in every of his so much influential principles issues the proposal that we'd like the minds of others to enhance our personal emotional and cognitive capacities. In Containing States of brain Duncan Cartwright explores and develops a number of the implications that Bion’s box version has on scientific perform. He argues that the analyst or therapist top fulfils a containing functionality by way of negotiating irreconcilable inner tensions among his position as ‘dream item’ and ‘proper object’. The box version can also be used to demonstrate diversified ‘modes of interplay’ within the analytic box, the character of specific pathological states and a few of the main dilemmas confronted in trying to make insufferable psychological states extra bearable. in addition to addressing key theoretical difficulties, Containing States of brain is a scientific textual content that renders advanced rules available and worthwhile for psychotherapeutic and analytic perform and as such could be crucial studying for all these enthusiastic about the fields of psychoanalysis and psychotherapy.

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Extra info for Containing states of mind: exploring Bion's 'container model' in psychoanalytic psychotherapy

Sample text

First, as just mentioned, projections occur in the mind-of the projector. In other words, the individual projects into his or her internal image of the object. For example, the patient may project hate into a psychic representation of the therapist, turning the internal image into an aggressive and dangerous1 object. The effect this has on the other person, the therapist, as an external object, does not occur by virtue of an actual projection. A second phase occurs at an interpersonal level whereby the manipulation of the internal image sets in train a process of interpersonal 'nudging' or influencing that impacts the relationship so as to realize aspects of the patient's intrapsychic phantasy (Ogden, 1986; Grotstein, 2005).

It occurs in the therapeutic process when the therapist idealizes the idea of 'holding' the patient's feelings. It also arises in pathological states where thoughts and feelings are used to shore up the self, treating the self like an actual object. Alternatively, it occurs when objects are experienced as inflexible, impenetrable, leading to excessive use of projective identification and violent action. There is one final important implication to using projective identification and the container in overly schematic ways.

It leaves the impression of a rather linear 'containing' process whereby the therapist goes through a Projective identification and countertransference 31 process of receptivity-metabolization-interpretation. In clinical reality, however, various versions of these 'containing activities' occur simultaneously and cannot be conceptualized as discrete tasks. This is partly why in later sections ofthe book I formulate the analyst's containing mind in dynamical, non-linear terms and see the role of interpretation as more iterative in nature (see Chapter 5).

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Containing states of mind: exploring Bion's 'container model' in psychoanalytic psychotherapy by Duncan Cartwright

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