Binocular Vision in the Total Situation

Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.

Oscar Wilde

Abstract

This paper investigates the concept of “total situation” which, even though introduced into psychoanalytic thinking via sister disciplines, such as sociology, the neurosciences, etc., has gradually acquired a relatively prominent position in current therapeutic practice. It is used as a metaphor for the envelopment of the unfolding transferential and related events in the analytic process. Irrespective of whether one focuses on the individual analytic condition or the group-analytic one, contemporary psychoanalytic perspectives include both the bi-personal unconscious interactions and the various levels of the total situation in their conceptualizations of the nature of the process. Such a complex approach in conceptualization can only be achieved through the so-called binocular vision of the analyst.

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Correspondence to Christo Joannidis.

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Address Correspondence to Dr. Christo Joannidis, Eth Antistaseos 65, Halandri 15231, Athens, Greece.

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Joannidis, C. Binocular Vision in the Total Situation. Am J Psychoanal 78, 74–88 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1057/s11231-017-9124-3

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Keywords

  • binocular vision
  • total situation
  • transference