Projective Identification

The Fate of a Concept

Edited by Elizabeth Spillius, Edna O'Shaughnessy

© 2011 – Routledge

432 pages

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Paperback: 9780415605298
pub: 2011-10-26
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About the Book

In this book Elizabeth Spillius and Edna O'Shaughnessy explore the development of the concept of projective identification, which had important antecedents in the work of Freud and others, but was given a specific name and definition by Melanie Klein. They describe Klein's published and unpublished views on the topic, and then consider the way the concept has been variously described, evolved, accepted, rejected and modified by analysts of different schools of thought and in various locations – Britain, Western Europe, North America and Latin America.

The authors believe that this unusually widespread interest in a particular concept and its varied ‘fate’ has occurred not only because of beliefs about its clinical usefulness in the psychoanalytic setting but also because projective identification is a universal aspect of human interaction and communication.

Projective Identification: The Fate of a Concept will appeal to any psychoanalyst or psychotherapist who uses the ideas of transference and counter-transference, as well as to academics wanting further insight into the evolution of this concept as it moves between different cultures and countries.

Table of Contents

Spillius, O'Shaughnessy, Foreword. Part I: Melanie Klein's Work. Spillius, The Emergence of Klein's Idea of Projective Identification in Her Published and Unpublished Work. Klein, Notes on Some Schizoid Mechanisms. Part II: Some British Kleinian Developments. Spillius, Developments by British Kleinian Analysts. Bion, Attacks on Linking. Rosenfeld, Contribution to the Psychopathology of Psychotic States: The Importance of Projective Identification in the Ego Structure and the Object Relations of the Psychotic Patient. Joseph, Projective Identification: Some Clinical Aspects. Feldman, Projective Identification: The Analyst's Involvement. Sodré, Who’s Who? Notes on Pathological Identifications. Part III: The Plural Psychoanalytic Scene. Spillius, O'Shaughnessy, Introduction. The British Psychoanalytic Society. O'Shaughnessy, The Views of Contemporary Freudians and Independents about the Concept of Projective Identification. Sandler, The Concept of Projective Identification. Continental Europe. Spillius, Introduction. Hinz, Projective Identification: The Fate of the Concept in Germany. Canestri, Projective Identification: The Fate of the Concept in Italy and Spain. Quinodoz, Projective Identification in Contemporary French-Language Psychoanalysis. The United States. Spillius, Introduction. Schafer, Projective Identification in the USA: An Overview. Spillius, A Brief Review of Projective Identification in American Psychoanalytic Literature. Malin, Grotstein, Projective Identification in the Therapeutic Process. Ogden, On Projective Identification. Mason, Vicissitudes of Projective Identification. Latin America. Meyer, Introduction. Jarast, Projective Identification: Projections in Argentina. Massi, Projective Identification: Brazilian Variations of the Concept. Jordan-Moore, Projective Identification and the Weight of Intersubjectivity. Spillius, O'Shaughnessy, Afterword.

About the Editors

Elizabeth Spillius studied general psychology at the University of Toronto (1945), social anthropology at the University of Chicago, The London School of Economics and The Tavistock Institute of Human Relations (1945-1957) and psychoanalysis at the Institute of Psychoanalysis in London (1956 to the present). Her main writings have been Family and Social Network (1957, writing as Elizabeth Bott), Tongan Society at the Time of Captain Cook's Visits (1982), Melanie Klein Today (1988) and Encounters with Melanie Klein (2007)

Edna O'Shaughnessy came to psychoanalysis from philosophy. She trained first as a Child Psychotherapist at the Tavistock Clinic in the 1950s, and then in the 1960s, she trained at the British Psychoanalytical Society, of which she is a training and supervising analyst and also a child analyst. Her many published papers are written from both a clinical and a conceptual perspective

About the Series

The New Library of Psychoanalysis

The New Library of Psychoanalysis is published by Routledge Mental Health in association with the Institute of Psychoanalysis, London.

Its purpose is to facilitate a greater and more widespread appreciation of psychoanalysis and to provide a forum for increasing mutual understanding between psychoanalysts and those in other disciplines. The series also aims to make some of the work of continental and other non-English speaking analysts more readily available to English-speaking readers, and to increase the interchange of ideas between British and American analysts.

The New Library of Psychoanalysis published its first book in 1987 under the editorship of David Tuckett, later followed by Elizabeth Bott Spillius, Susan Budd and Dana Birksted-Breen. A considerable number of Associate Editors and readers have assisted the editors.

Under the guidance of Foreign Rights Editors, a considerable number of the New Library books have been published abroad, particularly in Brazil, Germany, France, Italy, Peru, Spain and Japan.

The aim of the New Library of Psychoanalysis is to maintain the high level of scholarship of the previous series, to provide a forum for increasing understanding between psychoanalysis and other disciplines and to increase the interest of the general book-reading public in psychoanalysis.

The New Library of Psychoanalysis also aims to help the various schools of psychoanalysis to better understand each other. It has published books representing all three schools of thought in British psychoanalysis, including a particularly important work edited by Pearl King and Riccardo Steiner, expounding the intellectual and organisational controversies that developed in the British psychoanalytical Society between Kleinian, Viennese and 'middle group' analysts during the Second World War.

The New Library of Psychoanalysis has also translated and published several books by Continental psychoanalysts, and it plans in the future to continue the policy of publishing books that express as clearly as possible a variety of psychoanalytic points of view.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Movements / Psychoanalysis