1st Edition

Emotional Communication
Countertransference analysis and the use of feeling in psychoanalytic technique

ISBN 9780415525176
Published December 14, 2012 by Routledge
352 Pages

USD $62.95

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Book Description

What role does animal like and infantile communication play in life and in psychoanalysis? How are painful childhood experiences recreated with people who are nothing like the original family? What are the roles of loving and horrible feelings in psychoanalytic cure? 

In Emotional Communication, Paul Geltner places the pre-linguistic type of communication that is shared with infants and animals at the core of the psychoanalytic relationship. He shows how emotional communication intertwines with language, permeating every moment of human interaction, and becoming a primary way that people involuntarily recreate painful childhood relationships in current life. 

Emotional Communication integrates observations from a number of psychoanalytic schools in a cohesive but non-eclectic model. Geltner expands psychoanalytic technique beyond the traditional focus on interpretation and the contemporary focus on authenticity to include the use feelings that precisely address the client's repetitive patterns of misery. The author breaks down analytic interventions into their cognitive and emotional components, describing how each engages a different part of the client's mind and serves a different function. He explains the role of emotional communication in psychoanalytic technique both in classical interpretations and in non-interpretive interventions that use the analyst's feelings to amplify the therapeutic power of the psychoanalytic relationship. 

Offering a clear alternative to both Classical and contemporary Relational and Intersubjective approaches to understanding and treating clients in psychoanalysis, Paul Geltner presents a theory of communication and maturation that will interest psychoanalysts, psychotherapists, and those concerned with the subtleties of human relatedness. 



Paul Geltner is a psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City, USA. He specializes in individual and group supervision of psychoanalysts and psychoanalytic psychotherapists.


"With Emotional Communication: Countertransference Analysis and the Use of Feeling in Psychoanalytic Technique (Routledge, 2013), Paul Geltner has written the definitive textbook on countertransference. No book, to my knowledge comes even close to this accomplishment. Most analysts are taught that countertransferences are the idiosyncratic feelings of the analyst. Geltner begins with the radical assumption that all of the analyst’s feelings should be considered inductions by the patient until proven otherwise. Geltner describes the many ways in which emotional communications can be induced and expands concept of countertransference into discrete observable categories with clinically useful examples."- Will Braun,  New Books in Psychoanalysis

"Overall I found Geltner’s book interesting and thought provoking and would recommend this book to psychotherapists and analysts of different theoretical persuasions. " - Petra Mohr, Integrative Psychotherapist, and Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist in Training, Tavistock Clinic for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy

"Paul Geltner has authored a book that will interest students and practitioners of psychoanalysis; novices will also be attracted to his system, his “experience near” language, and extensive clinical dialogues; modern psychoanalysts will feel refreshed and empowered by his reasoned perspective; supervisors will embrace his flexible systematic approach to common, stubborn clinical impasses; theoreticians will be intrigued by his attempt to provide a system that evolves hypotheses for clinical testing; and all clinicians will appreciate and want to further study his practical approach to everyday thorny issues. This book advances the theoretical and technical boundaries of modern psychoanalysis. Its complexity, richness and promise may move readers to study Geltner’s work in greater detail." - Robert J. Marshall, in Modern Psychoanalysis, 38:2.

"I have come to find the structured quality of Geltner’smodel of countertransference analysis a useful mental tool; a tool that I could apply when thinking about my emotional reactions to a patient and how I may best respond to the patient..." -  Petra Mohr. Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy