Melanie Klein Today, Volume 1: Mainly Theory: Developments by E. Spillius

By E. Spillius

An advent to key papers chosen to demonstrate the advance of Klein's techniques by means of others in 4 major components: the research of psychotics; projective id; conception approximately considering; pathological psychological companies.

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Additional resources for Melanie Klein Today, Volume 1: Mainly Theory: Developments in Theory and Practice (New Library of Psychoanalysis, 7)

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Later he closed his hand and squeezed it tightly. I interpreted that he phantasied that he imprisoned me inside his hand and that he was crushing me. He continued squeezing his hand for some time, looking withdrawn. Suddenly he got up, looked round in a frightened way, and escaped from the treatment room, which was not locked. The nurses brought him back, and he sat down again without any struggle. I pointed out to him that, while he was phantasying holding and squeezing me inside himself, the room had suddenly turned, for him, into a dangerous prison from which he tried to escape.

I used this information next day with the patient, as he made no reference to it himself, and I explained this frightening experience as a continuation of what we had been discussing during the previous session. I related the abyss to the crater and interpreted that not only did MELANIE KLEIN TODAY: PSYCHOTIC PATIENTS 33 he feel that he had killed and destroyed me in the crater, but also that he felt he had changed me into a retaliating object which was threatening him with punishment and death.

I will now give some detailed material which followed an attack on Sister X four weeks after the beginning of his treatment. A few days before the attack, he seemed preoccupied with phantasies of attacking and biting breasts and with fear of women (‘witchcraft’). He was inarticulate and difficult to understand. He talked about ‘three buns’, which probably meant three breasts, but it was not clear at the time why there were three. He attacked Sister X suddenly, while he was having MELANIE KLEIN TODAY: PSYCHOTIC PATIENTS 25 tea with her and his father, hitting her hard on the temple.

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