Advertisement

Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society

, Volume 23, Issue 4, pp 419–436 | Cite as

Loss, self-states, and the immigrant analyst: Exploring the “analytic fourth”

  • Gurmeet S. KanwalEmail author
Original Article
  • 37 Downloads

Abstract

In this paper I explore how immigration impacts the experience of working as a psychoanalyst. I describe a kind of loss that can be experienced between an immigrant analyst or therapist, and certain patients. What is lost to the analyst, and what is lost on the patient? What is mourned, and what is not? I suggest that the loss has something to do with the inactivation, withdrawal, or extinction of certain self-state experiences. I use the term “analytic fourth” to refer to these relational self-states that fail to become consummated between patient and therapist.

Keywords

culture immigration loss psychoanalysis psychotherapy self-states 

Notes

Acknowledgements

I am grateful to my patients without whom this understanding of my experience would not be possible. Thanks also to Richard Chefetz (personal communication) for pointing to the importance of language in making it hard for culturally displaced individuals to mourn, because of difficulty with symbolizing feelings. For reasons of lack of space, I have alluded only marginally to the role of language in this paper.

References

  1. Ainslie, R. (2011) Immigration and the psychodynamics of class. Psychoanalytic Psychology 28(4): 560–568.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Akhtar, S. (1999) Immigration and Identity: Turmoil, Treatment and Transformation. Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson.Google Scholar
  3. Akhtar, S. (2011) Immigration and Acculturation: Mourning, Adaptation and the Next Generation. Plymouth, UK: Jason Aronson.Google Scholar
  4. Blechner, M.J. (1998) The analysis and creation of dream meaning: Interpersonal, intrapsychic, and neurobiological perspectives. Contemporary Psychoanalysis 34(2): 181–194.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Boulanger, G. (2015) Seeing double, being double: Longing, belonging, recognition, and evasion in psychodynamic work with immigrants. American Journal of Psychoanalysis 75(3): 287–303.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bromberg, P. (1996) Standing in the spaces: The multiplicity of self and the psychoanalytic relationship. Contemporary Psychoanalysis 32(4): 509–535.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bromberg, P. (2011) Awakening the Dreamer: Clinical Journeys. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  8. Chefetz, R. (2017) Hysteria and dissociative processes: A latent multiple self-state model of mind in self psychology. Psychoanalytic Inquiry 37(2): 82–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Davis, G. (dir.) (2016) Lion. The Weinstein Company.Google Scholar
  10. Eng, D.L. and Han, S. (2000) A dialogue on racial melancholia. Psychoanalytic Dialogues 10(4): 667–700.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Freud, S. (1918/1957) The taboo of virginity (Contributions to the psychology of love III). Standard Edition 11. London: Hogarth Press, pp. 191–208.Google Scholar
  12. Frie, R. (2012) On culture, history, and memory: Encountering the “narrative unconscious.” Contemporary Psychoanalysis 48(3): 329–343.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Green, A. (1997) The intuition of the negative in playing and reality. International Journal of Psychoanalysis 78(Pt. 6): 1071–1084.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Harlem, A. (2010) Exile as a dissociative state: When a self is “lost in transit.” Psychoanalytic Psychology 27(4): 460–474.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Khan, M. (1983) Hidden Selves. New York: International Universities Press.Google Scholar
  16. Kohut, H. (1977) The Restoration of the Self. New York: International Universities Press.Google Scholar
  17. Levenson, E.A. (1972) The Fallacy of Understanding: An Inquiry into the Changing Structure of Psychoanalysis. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  18. Marks-Tarlow, T. (2014) Brain science as the analytic fourth: Commentary on paper by Michael J. Gerson. Psychoanalytic Dialogues 24(2): 236–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Ogden, T.H. (1994) The analytic third: Working with intersubjective clinical facts. International Journal of Psychoanalysis 75(Pt.1): 3–19.Google Scholar
  20. Shahar, G. (2010) Poetics, pragmatics, schematics, and the psychoanalysis-research dialogue (rift). Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy 24(4): 315–328.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Smith, Z. (2016) The bathroom. Paper presented at the American Psychoanalytic Association Meeting, January 15, New York City, USA.Google Scholar
  22. Stern, D.B. (1983) Unformulated experience,—from familiar chaos to creative disorder. Contemporary Psychoanalysis 19(1): 71–99.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Suchet, M. (2004) A relational encounter with race. Psychoanalytic Dialogues 14(4): 423–438.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Tummala-Narra, P. (2009) The immigrant’s real and imagined return home. Psychoanalysis, Culture, and Society 14(3): 237–252.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Ulanov, A.B. (2007) The third in the shadow of the fourth. Journal of Analytical Psychology 52(5): 585–605.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. United Nations. (2017) Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. International Migration Report 2017 (ST/ESA/SER.A/403). http://www.un.org/en/development/desa/population/migration/publications/migrationreport/docs/MigrationReport2017.pdf, accessed 2 April 2018.

Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.New YorkUSA
  2. 2.William Alanson White Institute of Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis and PsychologyNew YorkUSA
  3. 3.Weill Medical College of Cornell UniversityNew YorkUSA

Personalised recommendations