Archivi categoria: English

A long meeting with Bion

Neri, C. (2016), A long meeting with Bion, in H.B. Levine, G. Civitarese (eds), The W. R. Bion Tradition – Lines of Development, Evolution and Theory and Practice over the Decades, Karnac Books, London, 23-28.

Abstract 

In this paper the author describes his personal experience of meeting Bion in the rich historical and political context of the late 60s.  Bion’s character is represented as a thinker, practitioner and influencer in the Italian psychoanalytic landscape and particularly in group psychotherapy. The first paragraphs describe the state of the art of Italian practice and research in group psychotherapy: the important contribution of SPI – Italian Society of Psychoanalysis – in supporting the birth of the “Italian model” in group psychotherapy and in evolving its own operational concepts – such as the concept of “field” – and in organizing the first Italian SPI congress based on Bion’s figure: the congress had a huge resonance all over Europe and contributed in making know the Italian group psychotherapy.
The last paragraphs focus on the personal experience of the author in meeting and knowing Bion – not only as a psychanalyst, but also as a person – and on how Bion touched and influenced the author’s personal and professional approach.

Chapter in pdf

Protetto: A long meeting with Bion

Questo documento è sotto copyright per cui è protetto da password. Per richiedere la password riempire il form in contatti.

The analytic field as a resonator and instrument for revealing the presence of other fields

Neri, C. (2017), The analytic field as a resonator and instrument for revealing the presence of other fields, in Kats, S.M., Cassorla, R., Civitarese, G. (eds.), Advances in Contemporary Psychoanalytic Field Theory: Concept and Future Development, Routledge, Taylor and Francis Group, London and New York.

Abstract
In this paper the author explores the idea that the analytic field – that is co-created by and shared between patient and analyst – may be a resonator and instrument for revealing the presence of other fields. These “other fields” – to which the patient or those of his close or extended family belongs to – may produce favourable or even disturbing effects on the analytic field itself. He retraces the path that led him to his main subject passing through three main concepts, such as the “significant other”, the “modal operator” / “exploration of the field” and “the awareness of the existence of a shared field”. Eventually, he illustrates through a case history a specific type of field, namely, the “umbral cone” that may be projected even over vast distances by anything bearing a relation to the element of the sacred and by institutions connected with religion.

Chapter in pdf

Protetto: The analytic field as a resonator and instrument for revealing the presence of other fields

Questo documento è sotto copyright per cui è protetto da password. Per richiedere la password riempire il form in contatti.

Feelings of guilt, shame, and unworthiness: From the viewpoint of a psychotherapy group of psychiatrists, psychologists, and psychotherapists

Neri, C. (2012), Feelings of guilt, shame, and unworthiness: From the viewpoint of a psychotherapy group of psychiatrists, psychologists, and psychotherapists, European Journal of Psychotherapy Counselling & Health, 14 (2), 189-200.  ISSN: 1364-2537

Abstract

This article is an account of the work the author did with a psychotherapy group which lasted over 20 years. The participants were psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, psychotherapists, and educational staff who were working in various sectors of the Italian National Health Services. The group was ‘slow open’ therefore, when someone was ready to leave, others were able to join. The group’s life came to include five generations of participants. Over and over again, the participants found themselves engaged in mainly two kinds of problems: feelings of guilt and, shame and unworthiness. Both of these were partially related to choices of profession and the difficulties of working in the public service. They were able to deal quite successfully with the feelings of guilt and the related moods of depression. On the other hand, alleviating the sense of shame and unworthiness was more difficult. The author succeeded with all but three participants. In those three cases – which are presented in the article – the childhood feelings of shame and unworthiness had produced extreme socio-syntonic defenses (defenses which are very well attuned to the current social values). Those defenses had helped and kept on helping the three patients a great deal in forcing their way through life and their work places; they felt they had the right to behave this way. However successful those defenses were, they prevented those patients from having a complete and satisfactory affective life, rooted in the belief that they have a right to be loved simply because they exist.

 

Interview with Balbino

Neri, C. (2005), Interview with Balbino, Funzione Gamma. Journal online di Psicologia di gruppo, 15. Disponibile da http://www.funzionegamma.it/interview-with-balbino/

Abstract 

The interview between Claudio Neri and Balbino was carried out in dialogue form, this is of great importance, as not only does it provide significant information on the therapeutic ritual, but above all it shows the comparison- meeting between two cultural modes of thinking, as for example the function of dreams in human relations and their interpretation.It’s a meeting that allows to keep hold of the ‘differences’, but exchanging ‘mental forms’ of different ‘knowledge’: hence, a ‘mestizo’ context that François Laplantine defines as follows “ it’s a never ending process of bricolage”.

Articolo in pdf

interview-with-balbino

Leadership in small groups: Syncretic sociality and the genius loci

Neri, C. (2006), Leadership in small groups: Syncretic sociality and the genius lociEuropean Journal of Psychotherapy Counselling and Health, 8 (1), 33-46. ISSN: 1364-2537

Abstract

Freud presupposed that the group has one leader and only one. The Freudian view was that for the members of the group the group leader fills the role of the superego ideal. Bion, on the other hand, makes a distinction between ‘work-group mentality’ and ‘primitive mentality’. Each of these two mentalities at work in the group has its own corresponding leader. The head of the work group is an operative leader, a leader of thought. The head of the basic-assumption group embodies and expresses regressive, uncontrollable negative drives. This leader’s individuality is peculiarly susceptible to obliteration by the basic-assumption group’s leadership requirements. I have chosen to give the name of genius loci to a third figure who fosters the group members’ sense of belonging and identity, encourages participation and sharing, and manages to grasp the affective tonality of what is happening in the group. In the small analytic group the genius loci refers to a figure analogous to a leader, working with, in opposition to or alongside the work-group leader.

Articolo in pdf
leadership-in-small-groups-syncretic-sociality-and-the-genius-loci

The conception of disease: historical, anthropological and clinical observations

Girelli, R., Neri, C. (2006), The conception of disease: historical, anthropological and clinical observations, Funzione Gamma. Journal online di Psicologia di gruppo, 18. Disponibile da http: www.funzionegamma.it/the-conception-of-disease-historical-anthropological-and-clinical-observations/

Abstract

The authors present a dialogue aimed at illuminating the concept of disease, within a complex and multidisciplinary. Following a historical development of the concept, are first identified the elements of the value of Hippocratic medicine, and then articulate the notion with the developments that it has received as part of psychoanalysis and group psychoanalysis. To better understand the concept of disease in the latter area, are also used contributions from the anthropological studies of some cultures that have been studied in particular by Augé and Heretier.

Articolo in pdf

the-conception-of-disease-historical-anthropological-and-clinical-observations

The enlarged notion of field in psychoanalysis

NERI C. (2009). The enlarged notion of field in psychoanalysis, in A. Ferro, R. Basile (eds.), The Analytic Field: A Clinical Concept, Karnak Books, London, 45-80.

Abstract

This article has attempted to re-propose the terms of a renewed comparison on an important subject: the clinical use of the notion of field. In the first part of the paper the author distinguished the concept of field with other closely bound but not overlapping concepts: atmosphere, bond, relationship and transference. In the second part he presented the enlarged notion of field, which comes from the confluence of the idea of field with the concepts of Rêverie and the capability to dissolve emotions into narrations.

Articolo in pdf
the-enlarged-notion-of-field-in-psychoanalysis

Discussion on Desire, Demand and Psychotherapy: On Large Groups and Neighbours by Stephen Frosh

Neri, C., Discussion on Desire, Demand and Psychotherapy: On Large Groups and Neighbours by Stephen Frosh, in Despair, Dialogue and Desire. Acts of the 14th European Symposium in Group Analysis, Dublin, 18th-22nd August 2008, 1-2.

Articolo in pdf
discussion-on-desire-demand-and -psychotherapy-on-large-groups-and-neighbours-by-stephen-frosh

Authenticity as an aim of Psychoanalysis

Neri, C. (2008), Authenticity as an aim of Psychoanalysis, American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 68, 325-349. ISSN: 0002-9548

Abstract
This paper will present a series of predominantly clinical observations concerning the lengthy work a patient carries out, with the help of the analyst, in order to achieve greater personal authenticity. When this work is drawing to a close and the patient has gained a degree of authenticity, this authenticity remains within him, almost without his realizing it. The power of authenticity is instead revealed through the patient’s most intimate and important relationships. In the long term, the patient’s authenticity also alters his perception of himself and of his role in the world. He feels more alive and less overcome by a sense of futility, if before this had been the case.

Articolo in pdf
authenticity-as-an-aim-of-psychoanalysis

Truth as a therapeutic factor

Neri, C. (2007), Truth as a therapeutic factor, Funzione Gamma. Journal on line di Psicologia di Gruppo, 19. Disponibile da http://www.funzionegamma.it//truth-as-a-therapeutic-factor/

Abstract

Truth – according to Bion – has a performative character; it can bring about transformations. Analysis is a “veridical process” that helps the patient become himself. In order for this transformation to positively occur, the search for truth must be tempered and guided by empathy. The therapist takes part in the veridical analytic process both with personal participation and benevolence.

Articolo in pdf

truth-as-a-therapeutic-factor

What is the function of faith and trust in psychoanalysis?

Neri, C. (2005), What is the function of faith and trust in psychoanalysis?, The International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 86 (1), 79-97.

Abstract
Unlike other concepts such as illusion, capacity to tolerate frustration and libidinal investment, the concept of faith has not yet found a well defined position in psychoanalytic theory. Bion focused on faith and placed it in an unusual context: scientific work. Through the Act of Faith a researcher can give some consistency to certain ideas, hunches or intuitions that may appear during observation, though he cannot represent them by existing theory. Through the Act of Faith an analyst can ‘see’, ‘hear’, and ‘feel’ those mental phenomena the reality of which lives no practicing psychoanalyst in doubt, even if he cannot represent them by current formulations. The main purpose of this paper is to expand Bion’s proposals into the clinical and therapeutic fields. The first part will examine how faith and trust overlap and how they depart from each other. I give just an example: faith possesses an igniting and driving force which trust doesn’t have to the same extent. The second part looks at F as a psychic function of the analyst’s which aids him in supporting a depressed and hopeless patient while he is waiting for the return of the patient’s desire to live. The final part focuses on F from the patient’s point of view and studies the transformations of F that may occur during an analysis

Articolo in pdf
what-is-the-function-of-faith-and-trust-in-psychoanalysis

Anthropological psychoanalysis. Bion s Journeying in Italy

Neri C. (2003). Anthropological Psychoanalysis, Bion’s Journeying in Italy in Lipgar R.M. e Pines M. (eds) Building on Bion : Roots Origins and Context of Bion’s Contribution’s to Theory and Practice, Jessica Kingsley Publ., London and New York

Abstract
Bion held his last seminar in Rome on 17th July 1977. Francesco Corrao, on behalf of all the participants, expressed his gratitude for the lessons which had been given.
Bion thanked the participants for their gratitude and added that he hoped he would not seem rude if he compared Corrao’s description of his contribution to something of which he was aware but did not  much like – the nearest image he could give was of a leaf falling from a tree without our being able to tell on which side it would land.
At first I didn’t perceive the fact that he was expressing perplexity about, how his contribution would be received and worked through. I was more struck by the image he was using than by the content. In 1977, Bion was getting on in years and although in good health, he did not know what the future held for him. The image of the falling leaf remained in my mind as a farewell: his goodbye to the people with whom he had spent a week of fervent work

Articolo in pdf
anthropological-psychoanalysis-bion-journeying-in-italy

The F factor: Modifications in the Course of Group Psycho-therapy Training

Paper read at the international conference on « Training in Group Therapy : A challenge in a changing Mental Health Scenario » organized by the University Hospital of Geneva and co-sponsored by the World Psychiatric Association in Geneva, 19th – 20th September 2003

Abstract
There are many reasons that bring a person to training in group therapy, or to add this training to that of being physicians, psychologists, social workers or nurses. It may be for economic, social, ethical or personal reasons but it is very often an additional reason that is more difficult to define. It can be recognized through the following features: a) the desire to help those who are suffering or help a specific category of people: psychiatric patients, the elderly or children, b) the feeling that the chosen profession will make it possible to change the world and make it a better place, c) the conviction tainted with hope that by choosing that profession, a meaning will be given to life and to our presence on earth, d) the idea that theory and practice of psychotherapy have the extraordinary capacity of bringing about a positive change and those who master both this theory and this practice have special powers

Articolo in pdf
the-f-factor-modifications-in-the-course-of-group-psycho-therapy-training

Free Associations, Free Flowing Discussions and Group Thought

Neri, C. (2003). ‘Free Associations, Free Flowing Discussions and Group Thought’ Group Analysis. Vol 36(3):345–357

Abstract
The author makes two basic points, ones that have not been elucidated in the literature.
The first is that when group associations coalesce, in some sort of  unified way, they form in two levels.  One level is the manifest theme that the therapist perceives and, in traditional group-as-a-whole approaches, interprets.  The second level, the deeper one, is an emerging fantasy, that is, one that has yet to be defined. The existence of these two levels has clinical significance. The classic group-as-a-whole approaches dealt only with the first level.  Notably, such approaches often proved ineffective.  The reason, according to my thesis, is that they failed to address the second, deeper level

Articolo in pdf
free-associations-free-flowing-discussions-and-group-thought (2)

Introduction. Robi Friedman, Claudio Neri and Malcolm Pines

Neri C., Friedman R., Pines M., (2002). Introduction in Neri C., Friedman R., Pines M. (eds) Dreams in Group Psychotherapy Theory and Technique, Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London and Philadelphia.

Abstract
The idea for this book was born during a meeting on a Roman terrace one sunny afternoon after a congress about ‘Dreams and the Group’. The three future editors of this book – relaxing with drinks in hand, chatting about this, that and the recent scientific meetings – concluded that the congress had been very interesting. But their strongest impression was that they were starting rather than ending a journey of exploration.
It was clear to them that although the dream theme strongly links group psychotherapy to Freud’s psychoanalytical tradition, dealing with the dream in the group context goes far beyond psychoanalytical paradigms. The most ancient traditions had addressed dreams in order to decipher the future as representing a different level of ‘reality’, essential to living contemporary social life in a richer, more creative way

Articolo in pdf
introduction-robi-friedman-claudio-neri-malcolm-pines

Free Associations, Free Flowing Discussions and Group Thought

Group Analysis. Vol 36(3):345–357

Abstract
I’m making two basic points, ones that have not been elucidated in the literature.
The first is that when group associations coalesce, in some sort of unified way, they form in two levels.  One level is the manifest theme that the therapist perceives and, in traditional group-as-a-whole approaches, interprets.  The second level, the deeper one, is an emerging fantasy, that is, one that has yet to be defined. The existence of these two levels has clinical significance.
The classic group-as-a-whole approaches dealt only with the first level.  Notably, such approaches often proved uneffective.  The reason, according to my thesis, is that they failed to address the second, deeper level

Articolo in pdf
free-associations-free-flowing-discussions-and-group-thought