24 Pages

Problems of the large group from a group-analytic point of view

WithS. H. Foulkes

The narrowest point of view will see in it merely a time-saver, perhaps, or a kind of substitute for other more individual forms of psychotherapy. A wider view will see in it a new method of therapy, investigation, information and education. The 'therapeutic' effect on all participants and their different groupings would appear to be the more positive the more discreetly and carefully the emotional climate in the large group has been observed. In the group-analytic view, the inheritance is not seen entirely, or even predominantly, as a genetic and biological one, but more as a cultural inheritance, a transmission from generation to generation, from the earliest days onwards. The concept of mental processes per se being multi-personal seems hard to accept. The group reinforces correspondingly primitive and elementary defence mechanisms, such as identification, projection and splitting.