Medium 9781780491943

Wilfred Bion

Views: 1640
Ratings: (0)

Wilfred Bion's unpublished lectures at the Los Angeles Psychoanalytic Society and Institute in April in 1967 represent a unique opportunity for students either new to or continuing in the study of Bion's unique psychoanalytic vertex. Here one can both read - and hear - Bion's clear exposition of his clinical and theoretical thinking to an audience of primarily Freudian trained American analysts, most of whom were new to his ideas.Thfirst lecture sets out Bion's ideas on 'memory and desire' in a paper that set the benchmark in the origins of contemporary Kleinian clinical technique. Bion discusses the various factors that facilitate optimal listening receptivity in the analyst, for example how one differentiates the 'K' link vis-a-vis 'transformations in O.' In the second lecture, Bion defined projective identification, container/contained and 'beta elements'- and how these ideas serve as an orienting template for the analyst's understanding of 'proto-mental' states of mind, either in psychotic, borderline or neurotic patients. He clarifies these ideas while engaging with the queries of renowned American analysts, such as Ralph Greenson. In ththird lecture, Bion gives extensive case illustrations of primarily borderline and psychotic patients primarily in terms of work that ushered in a new era of understanding of both borderline and narcissistic pathological organizations. In the final lecture, Bion takes up hallucinatory forms of experience and intersperses his more recent thoughts about the mystic and the Establishment, understanding something of the problematic tensions introduced by the London Kleinians who had in recent years questioned Freud's assumptions about the non-analyzability of the so-called 'narcissistic neuroses.'

List price: $24.99

Your Price: $19.99

You Save: 20%

Remix
Remove

6 Chapters

Format Buy Remix

First Seminar—12 April 1967

ePub

First Seminar—12 April 1967

O and the problem of language—memory and desire—clinical examples—the analyst's paranoid–schizoid and depressive positions—audience questions

Participants asking questions and making comments during the four seminars have been named only when they were clearly identified by name at the time.

Moderator: Although he is a stranger to this land, his distinction has come before him. Not only do we know him by his work, we know him by his confreres, with whom we have been meeting with these past four years. We have been filled with admiration for their learning, and for their profound devotion to learning and we have been enriched. I shall not here speak of our envy nor our wonder; that I shall leave for him to do next week. With these informal few words as an envoy, I wish to launch our meeting and introduce to you our speaker, Dr Wilfred R. Bion.

Bion: Thank you very much. There's such an enormous amount to do and to talk about, that I find it rather difficult to know how to start. What I hope to say first I think is something which I'm afraid you may think is really absurdly simple, but since this is psychoanalysis that doesn't last for long. I attach a good deal of importance to it, because I think that with the shortage of time that we've got and the amount we've got to get done in the time, I'd like you to be quite sure that you're satisfied and…with what I'm saying to you and with my making it clear. So if you'll unhesitatingly ask me questions, I don't think it would interrupt the proceedings too much. And the other point is that if you're not satisfied with the answer, if you will go on asking the same questions throughout the seminar because I hope in that way, gradually, to be able to produce an answer to it…that the first answers and so on are very unlikely to be answers to the question that you're really asking. But I think that if one does it in that kind of way, you can gradually feel that you are getting the kind of answer that you want (at least I hope that you will).

 

Second Seminar—14 April 1967

ePub

Second Seminar—14 April 1967

Projective identification, container/contained—the problem of language—clinical example—audience questions—the mystic and the establishment

Moderator: This is the second lecture, this is April 14, (1967) the second lecture of Dr Bion. We'll start now, Dr Bion, please.

Bion: I wanted to take up in some detail now this theory of projective identification, and really it also concerns the internal and external objects. Now, I want to do this by making use of visual imagery. I put it like this—well I think you'll see why I do so. I don't think that what I'm going to say ought to be taken as a description of facts, in fact I think we ought all to revise our views about this matter of reporting, or trying to report psychoanalytic sessions rather for the reasons that I mentioned last time. Namely, the whole of our vocabulary is concerned with sensuous experience, experience which can be picked up by our senses, when in point of fact, it simply is not applicable to the things that we deal with, while the things that we deal with are of unmistakable reality. So we are all the time suffering under the difficulties of having to use an inadequate vocabulary. So what I want to say about this is that one has to regard it as being a kind of simple way of describing a situation in pictorial terms, because doing so gives body to what is otherwise (or very liable to be, otherwise), a meaningless manipulation of abstract terms—in short the kind of thing that people complain about when they say we talk jargon.

 

Third Seminar—17 April 1967

ePub

Third Seminar—17 April 1967

Bion's treatment of a psychotic patient—Bion's comments on a case presented by a member of the audience

Moderator: I'd like to call the meeting to order, and for those who are having this taped, this is the third lecture of Dr Bion, this is April the 17th [1967]. Without any more to do, let's turn the thing over to him. Dr Bion.

Bion: I would like to start by describing as near as I can, an actual experience. Again, I think it is much better to treat this kind of thing as being an illustration; a sort of a pictorial version of an event, and treat it as if it were a correct report of what took place, partly because of what we all know as psychoanalysts, that there's this perpetual distortion, but partly because I think that we ought to use our knowledge and experience as psychoanalysts of this kind of distortion, to see if one can't find some kind of method by which we can deal with it. As I have said before, I find it very difficult to believe that the scientist can help us greatly, because I think that our difficulty isn't so much that I think we are unscientific as the scientific method has not gone far enough to solve our problems for us. Well, the patient (just to give you a very brief background of it), the patient who had been certified legally under certificate on the grounds of his being a schizophrenic. From the point of view of what it is worth, one has got that kind of background history to go upon. The difficulty I feel over this is that I think that the actual analytic approach to a patient of this kind, tends to make nonsense of the diagnosis, and doesn't really substitute anything in its place. But, however, that is the position with this particular man.

 

Fourth Seminar—19 April 1967

ePub

Fourth Seminar—19 April 1967

Bion's treatment of a borderline psychotic patient—audience questions—visual and auditory hallucinations in disturbed patients and Christian mystics

Moderator: I would like to announce this session for those who might be recording it. This is the fourth meeting of Dr Bion—this is April 19th [1967]. And with that, we'll turn the floor over to Dr Bion. Please.

Bion: I feel some trepidation about what I want to try to talk about this evening; I hope at the same time I will be able to explain why I feel trepidation about it. Now, I was just waiting for the session to start, I went into the waiting room and I brought the patient into my consulting room. As we were walking towards the consulting room, she had started. And she started by expressing her doubts about analysis—about me personally, about the relationships with her father and much the same about her mother, what had been going on in the office, which made her have doubts about the efficacy of analysis—and all this between the waiting room and the couch. By the time she got to the couch, a woman of about thirty, she had really warmed to the job [laughter]. To say that she seemed to be hostile was putting it very mildly indeed. The abuse became much more violent and in the course of this, she slithered off the end of the couch onto the floor, appeared to be frightened by the fall, which led to still further abuse and violence. She then proceeded to slap herself on the thighs, still pouring out hatred against analysis, with a parting swipe at Kleinians generally, of which she regards me as one, but made it clear that this wasn't to the exclusion of all other forms of analysts; that the whole lot were equally bad, but some more equal than others.

 

Psychoanalytic Case Presentation—13 April 1967

ePub

Psychoanalytic Case Presentation—13 April 1967

The utility of abandoning memory and desire in a case marked by masses of information from the patient and the case presenter

The case presentation has been edited on several counts. First, the patient's history as told to Bion has been summarised rather than given in its raw form. This was done primarily to conceal the patient's identity and protect his confidentiality. In addition, many personal and identifying details emerged in the course of the discussion, and all of this was redacted from the transcript. It appears clear to the editors that the reader does not need the deleted material to appreciate Bion's view of the case.

The redactions in the presentation are indicated by bolded ellipses in square brackets: […]. Several condensed summaries of deleted material have been added for clarity, and they appear within regular square brackets. The tape contains many interruptions from extraneous factors such as ringing telephones and telephone conversations, rearranging chairs, a housekeeping staff member whistling a tune, cars, emergency vehicle sirens, etc. None of these interruptions appear in this transcript.

 

Appendix

ePub

APPENDIX

Wilfred R. Bion:
Notes on Memory and Desire

This appendix reprints the entire article as originally published in The Psychoanalytic Forum, Volume 2, Number 3, which appeared in the Autumn of 1967. This short-lived, under-appreciated journal was the work of John A. Lindon, MD, an analyst from Los Angeles. Only five volumes were published. Lindon was a member of the Southern California Psychoanalytic Society and Institute, and a close friend of Arthur Malin. Both men were devoted to exploring the full range of psychoanalysis as it then stood, and Lindon's greatest contribution was to publish this journal. Its format was, and still is, both revolutionary and practical. Lindon solicited an article, and invited a handful of analysts of varying perspectives to comment on it. Finally, the comments were sent to the author, who offered a final response. Lindon invited articles and commentaries from analysts around the world, including Latin America, Europe and North America.

Lindon attended the seminars given by Bion. He states below in his discussion of Bion's paper, “I first heard of Dr Bion's ideas about a year ago” (p. 140). It is clear from this paragraph that Lindon refers specifically to the injunction to abandon memory and desire. We can only speculate when and how he asked Bion for a paper for the Forum; perhaps he did so having heard Bion give these seminars. If we consider the time necessary to select and confirm discussants, send out the original paper, allow the discussants time to write their responses, send the responses to Bion who would then write his, not to mention the time needed to publish the journal itself, it seems most likely that Bion had written his paper on “Memory and desire” before giving his Los Angeles seminars. If not, he had clearly thought through his ideas and was able to craft his brief masterpiece very quickly afterwards, and the seminar and supervision transcripts contain many of the terms and phrases found in it.

 

Details

Print Book
E-Books
Chapters

Format name
ePub
Encrypted
No
Sku
B000000021168
Isbn
9781781812730
File size
357 KB
Printing
Allowed
Copying
Allowed
Read aloud
Allowed
Format name
ePub
Encrypted
No
Printing
Allowed
Copying
Allowed
Read aloud
Allowed
Sku
In metadata
Isbn
In metadata
File size
In metadata