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p. 404. Free association, dreams, and transferencelocked

  • Anthony Storr


‘Free association, dreams and transference’ examines Freud's methods for dream analysis. Freud gradually abandoned hypnosis in favour of free association — uncensored thoughts and phantasies from the patient themselves. This technique gave the patient a greater sense of autonomy and enabled them to help themselves. Dreams often came up in free association, which led to Freud's development of the Theory of Dreams. He suggested that dreams were disguised fragments of repressed wishes, disguised by various ‘dream–work’ processes. Patients often display transference, where they develop strong feelings towards their analyst. Analysts can themselves develop counter–transference, impairing their detachment from patients.

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