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Looking for Ground by Peter M. Carnochan

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CHAPTER THREE

FREUD: GRATIFICATION, VIRTUE, AND THE THERAPEUTIC PROCESS

To understand Freud’s proscription of the countertransference we must trace his view of virtue, motivation, and therapeutic change. Freud bases his theory of cognition on his biological model of motivation and gratification. The proscription of the countertransference is a direct corollary of Freud’s view of the psychic economy. The individual, he argues, is motivated only by the desire to reduce the level of psychic tension. In analytic treatment then, to gratify, is to siphon off motivation and reduce the analysand’s impetus to change. To redirect the analysand’s desire toward real objects, the analyst must maintain an environment of frustration.

On the surface, this is ...

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