George J. Makari   Professor of Psychiatry

  • (212) 746-3091 (Clinical)

A History of "Transference": Linguistics and Psychotherapy

I. A Contextual History of Transference Theory. This historical research examines the philosophical and scientific influences on the creation of the psychoanalytic concept of transference. Past research has delineated:

  1. The relationship of Freud's first concept of transference (1895) to then current debates on hypnotism and hysteria.
  2. The relationship of Freud's 1900 modification in the theory of transference to Helmholtzian notions of visual perception and illusion.

Present research includes an examination of turn of the century sexology and its impact on the next modification of transference, as put forth by Freud in 1905.

II. Linguistics and the Psychotherapeutic Process. In this study Dr. Makari attempts to use linguistics to order the data gathering process in psychotherapy. The goal is to create a methodology by which semantics, syntactics, and pragmatics could be used to organize conscious and unconscious communications between therapists and patients.


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  • Dr. George J Makari

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Primary Affiliation

  • Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University