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Projective Identification by Edna O'Shaughnessy, Elizabeth Spillius

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6

Projective identification

Some clinical aspects34

Betty Joseph

The concept of projective identification was introduced into analytic thinking by Melanie Klein in 1946. Since then it has been welcomed, argued about, the name disputed, the links with projection pointed out, and so on; but one aspect seems to stand out above the firing line, and that is its considerable clinical value. It is this aspect that I shall mainly concentrate on today, and mainly in relation to the more neurotic patient.

Melanie Klein became aware of projective identification when exploring what she called the paranoid-schizoid position, that is, a constellation of a particular type of object relations, anxieties, and defences against them, typical for the earliest period ...

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