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Somatic Transference and Countertransference in Psychoanalytic Intersubjective Dance/Movement Therapy

Abstract

Since the 1950’s psychoanalytic theory has undergone a significant paradigm shift; moving from single mind, drive theories to intersubjective, relational theories that stress the co-constructed nature of mental life and relationships. The therapeutic relationship is now focused on the intersubjective relationships being constellated by the patient and the therapist throughout the treatment process. This paper presents several theoretical and clinical assumptions made by the psychoanalytic intersubjective approach to dance/movement therapy followed by the author. In this approach somatic and enacted aspects of the therapeutic relationship are systematically tracked by the therapist in order to make sense of the patient’s shifting self states and relationships being enacted by the therapeutic dyad. The treatment process of a patient who regressed to preverbal states is presented to underscore the somatic, experiential and co-constructed nature of the unfolding therapeutic relationship.

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Correspondence to Irma Dosamantes-Beaudry.

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Dosamantes-Beaudry, I. Somatic Transference and Countertransference in Psychoanalytic Intersubjective Dance/Movement Therapy. Am J Dance Ther 29, 73 (2007). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10465-007-9035-6

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Keywords

  • Somatic transference
  • Countertransference