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403 Unconscious Fantasy/Phantasy and Clinical Implications – 5 seminars

Course Leaders: M.A. Fitzpatrick Hanly, PhD and D. Carveth, PhD

Course Description

The Course teaches the major position papers on Unconscious Fantasy/Phantasy, which clarify core theories and clinical implications from American, British, French, and Kleinian perspectives. The Course explores the tracking of unconscious fantasies in the session as observed and understood from various points of view. The Course explores the interpretation of unconscious fantasy/phantasies to facilitate their becoming conscious as a major therapeutic action of psychoanalysis. Clinical material will be referred to in order to test observations, to evaluate formulations, to assess interpretations, and to understand and use the patient’s response to make further interpretations.

Course Objectives

Candidates will learn:

  1. To integrate major theories of mind and pathogenesis from the major psychoanalytic papers on Unconscious Fantasy/Phantasy, that clarify core theory and clinical implications from the American French and British Freudian, and Kleinian perspectives. (1.2)
  2. To observe the derivatives of unconscious fantasies/phantasies in the various ways they enter the session, in order to guide the analytic understanding and direction of therapeutic strategies. (4.4)
  3. To formulate the meaning of the unconscious fantasy in the light of early development and anxieties leading to the repression or splitting off of representations and/or impulses of sexuality and aggression, which influence current life. (1.2)
  4. To facilitate change in the patient by helping to make the unconscious fantasies/phantasies conscious, through interpretation of the patient’s associations and of the here and now transference, in the light of infantile situations, infantile sexuality, aggression, narcissism. (1.2, 4.2)

Seminar 1

Required Readings

Freud, S. (1911). Formulations on the two principles of mental functioning. The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Vol. 11, 213-226.

Arlow, J.A. (2008). Unconscious fantasy and disturbances of conscious experience. Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 77, 21-46.

Seminar 2

Required Readings

Isaacs, S. (1948). The nature and function of phantasy. International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 29, 73-97.

Sharpe, E. F. (1937). Analysis of a Single Dream. In Dream Analysis: A Practical Handbook for Psycho-Analysts (pp. 125-148). New York, NY: Brunner/Mazel.

Seminar 3

Required Readings

Segal, H. (1994). Phantasy and reality. International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 75, 395-401.

Segal, H. (1991). Imagination, play and art. In Dream, Phantasy and Art. London: Routledge.

Seminar 4

Required Readings

Spillius, E. (2001). Freud and Klein on the concept of phantasy. In Bronstein, C. (Ed.), Kleinian Theory: A Contemporary Perspective. London: Whurr.

Steiner, R. (2003). Introduction. In Steiner R. (Ed.), Unconscious Phantasy (pp. 2-66). London: Karnac.

Seminar 5

Required Readings

Freud, S. (1915). The unconscious. The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Vol. 14, 159-215.

Bronstein, C. (2015). Finding unconscious phantasy in the session: recognizing form. International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 96(4), 925-944.

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