Updating the Language of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy

  • Alan Eppel


The psychodynamic lexicon is vast, populated by multiple dialects. The various schools of psychodynamic therapy have added new vocabulary. Much of this terminology is metaphorical, and definitions are highly abstract. In this chapter, some of the key terms are defined from classical conflict theory, object relations theory and attachment theory. Many of the terms used in clinical practice have their roots in these theories that in many cases have been superseded by newer concepts. An attempt is made to translate these words into the new language of attachment theory and neuroscience. Because psychotherapy research is an essential part of contemporary psychodynamics, some of the most essential statistical terms are briefly described.


Psychodynamics Object relations Attachment theory Defences Empathy Effect size Meta-analysis 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alan Eppel
    • 1
  1. 1.McMaster UniversityHamiltonCanada

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