The interpretive attitude
DOI link for The interpretive attitude
The interpretive attitude book
A dedicated painter paints, it has been said, in order to learn how to paint. Similarly, a serious psychoanalyst analyzes in order to learn how to analyze. However, while painters of widely discrepant schools can for the most part agree as to what is a painting, the same cannot be said for agreement among psychoanalysts as to what is an analysis. The psychoanalytic attitude is at root one of professional responsibility in the service of another person’s mental freeing up and growing. That psychoanalytic attitude is communicated. Patients have more strengths than merely those caught in their transference conflicts, and they use those strengths to read the analyst’s mind as empathically as does the analyst’s mind working in the other direction. Study of the psychoanalytic process over recent decades has led to remarkable advances in understanding, exposing previously underappreciated aspects of the shared interaction of the two clinical partners.