Reading list: Projective identification

Key papers by Klein and later writers

For full references for Melanie Klein’s works see Melanie Klein’s publications.

Klein, M. (1946, 1952)

1946 ‘Notes on some schizoid mechanisms’. Gives a definition but the actual term ‘projective identification’ is mentioned only in passing two pages after the definition.

1952 ‘Notes on some schizoid mechanisms’. This 1952 version gives the same definition as the 1946 version but adds a definitive sentence: ‘I suggest for these processes the term “projective identification”‘.

Rosenfeld, H. (1947, 1964, 1971)

1947 ‘Analysis of a schizophrenic state with depersonalization’, International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 28: 130-139; republished in Psychotic States. Hogarth Press (1965). First published description of projective identification in a particular clinical case.

1964 ‘On the psychopathology of narcissism: a clinical approach’, International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 45: 332-337; republished in Psychotic States. Hogarth Press (1965). In narcissistic states, identification may be formed both by introjection and projection.

1971 ‘Contribution to the psychopathology of psychotic states: The importance of projective identification in the ego structure and the object relations of the patient’. P. Doucet and C. Laurin (eds.) Problems of Psychosis. Amsterdam: Excerpta Medica; republished in E. Spillius (ed.) Melanie Klein Today, Vol. 1. Routledge (1988). Motives for projective identification.

Bion, W.R. (1959, 1962)

1959 ‘Attacks on linking’, International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 40: 308-315; republished in Second Thoughts. Heinemann (1967); and in E. Spillius (ed.) Melanie Klein Today, Vol. 1. Routledge. (1988). Distinguishes normal and pathological projective identification.

1962 Learning from Experience. Heinemann. Introduces ‘container/contained’ model of thinking of which patient’s projective identification is an important aspect.

Other

1988 Joseph, B. ‘Projective identification: Clinical aspects’. E. Spillius (ed). Melanie Klein Today, Vol. 1. Routledge; republished in J. Sandler (ed.) Projection, Identification, Projective Identification. Karnac, pp. 65-76; and in Psychic Equilibrium and Psychic Change. Routledge (1989). Lucid clinical description of projective identification in three patients.

2004 Sodré, I. ‘Who’s who? Notes on pathological identifications’. E. Hargreaves and A. Varchevker (eds.). In pursuit of Psychic Change. Routledge. Normality or pathology depends on whether thinking is concrete or symbolic, not on whether identification is introjective or projective.

Further exploration

Abraham, K. (1911) ‘Notes on the psycho-analytical investigation and treatment of manic-depressive insanity and allied conditions’, in Selected Papers on Psychoanalysis. London: Hogarth Press (1927), pp. 137-156.

Baranger, M., Baranger, W., and Mom, J. (1983) ‘Process and non-process in analytic work’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 64: 1-15.

Bell, D. (2001) ‘Projective identification’, in C. Bronstein (ed.) Kleinian Theory: A Contemporary Perspective. London: Whurr, pp 125-147.

Boris, H. (1988) ‘Torment of the object: A contribution to the study of bulimia’, in Sleights of Mind: One and Multiples of One. Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson (1994), pp. 187-205.

Boris, H. (1990) ‘Identification with a vengeance’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 71: 127-140.

Boris, H. (1993) Passions of the Mind: Unheard Melodies, A Third Principle of Mental Functioning. New York: New York University Press.

Boris, H. (1994a) Envy. Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson.

Boris, H. (1994b) Sleights of Mind: One and Multiples of One. Northvale, NH: Jason Aronson.

Boyer, L.B. (1989) ‘Countertransference and technique in working with the regressed patient: Further remarks’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 70: 701-714.

Boyer, L.B. (1990a) ‘Psychoanalytic interventions in treating the regressed patient’, in L.B. Boyer and P.L. Giovacchini (eds.) Master Clinicians in Treating The Regressed Patient. Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson, pp. 1-32.

Boyer, L.B. (1990b) ‘Countertransference and technique’, in L.B. Boyer and P.L. Giovacchini (eds.) Master Clinicians in Treating The Regressed Patient. Northvale, NJ: Jason Aronson, pp. 303-324. 

Britton, R. (1998) Belief and Imagination. London: Routledge.

Feldman, M. (1992) ‘Splitting and projective identification’, in R. Anderson (ed.) Clinical Lectures on Klein and Bion. London: Routledge, pp 74-88.

Feldman, M. (1994) ‘Projective identification in phantasy and enactment’. Psychoanalytic Inquiry. 14: 423-440.

Feldman, M. (1997) ‘Projective identification: The analyst’s involvement’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 78: 227-241.

Freud, A. (1936) The Ego and the Mechanisms of Defence. London: Hogarth Press.

Freud, S. (1895) ‘Letter to Fliess’. S.E. 1. London: Hogarth Press, p. 209.

Freud, S. (1910) ‘Leonardo da Vinci and a memory of his childhood’. S.E. 11. London: Hogarth Press, pp. 57-151.

Freud, S. (1911) ‘Psycho-analytic notes on an autobiographical account of a case of paranoia (dementia paranoids)’. S.E. 12. London: Hogarth Press, pp. 3-82.

Grinberg, L. (1962) ‘On a specific aspect of countertransference due to the patient’s projective identification’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 42: 436-440.

Grinberg, L. (1979) ‘Countertransference and projective counteridentification’. Contemporary Psychoanalysis. 15: 226-247.

Grotstein, J. (2005) ‘Projective identification: An extension of the concept of projective identification’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 86: 1051-1069.

Grotstein, J. and Malin, A. (1966) ‘Projective identification in the therapeutic process’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 47: 26-31.

Heimann, P. (1950) ‘On counter-transference’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 33: 84-92.

Hinshelwood, R. D. (1991) Entry on ‘projective identification’ in A Dictionary of Kleinian Thought, 2nd edition. London: Free Association Books.

Joseph, B. (1987) ‘Projective identification: Clinical aspects’, in J. Sandler (ed.) Projection, Identification, Projective Identification, Madison, CT: International Universities Press, pp65-76; also in M. Feldman and E. Spillius (eds) Psychic Equilibrium and Psychic Change. London: Routledge (1989), pp. 166-180.

Kernberg, O. (1986) ‘Identification and its vicissitudes as observed in psychosis’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 57: 147-158.

Kernberg, O. (1987) ‘Projective identification: Developmental and clinical aspects’, in J. Sandler (ed.) Projection, Identification, Projective Identification. Madison CT: International Universities Press, pp. 93-115. Also in Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. 35: 795-819.

Lafarge, L. (1989) ‘Emptiness as a defense in severe regressed stats’. Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. 37: 965-995.

Massidda, G. B. ‘Shall we ever know the whole truth about projective identification?’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 80: 365-368.

Meissner, W. W. (1980) ‘A note on projective identification’. Journal of the American Psychoanalytical Association. 28: 43-86.

Meissner, W. W. (1987) ‘Projection and projective identification’, in J. Sandler (ed.) Projection, Identification, Projective Identification. Madison CT: International Universities Press, pp. 27-49.

Ogden, T. (1979) ‘On projective identification’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 60: 357-373.

Ogden, T. (1982) Projective Identification and Psychotherapeutic Technique. New York: Jason Aronson.

Ogden, T. (1994a) ‘The analytical mind: Working with intersubjective clinical facts’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 75: 3-20; also Chapter 5 in Subjects of Analysis. London: Karnac Books.

Ogden, T. (1994b) ‘The concept of interpretive action’. Psychoanalytic Quarterly. 63: 2310-2245; also Chapter 7 in Subjects of Analysis. London: Karnac Books.

Racker, H. (1953) ‘A contribution to the problem of counter-transference’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 34: 313-324.

Racker, H. (1957) ‘The meaning and uses of countertransference’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 26: 303-357.

Racker, H. (1958) ‘Counterresistance and interpretation’. Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. 6: 215-221.

Racker, H. (1968) Transference and Countertransference. London: Hogarth Press.

Sandler, J. (1976a) ‘Dreams, unconscious phantasies and “identity of perception”’. International Review of Psychoanalysis. 3: 33-42.

Sandler, J. (1976b) ‘Countertransference and role-responsiveness’. International Review of Psychoanalysis. 3: 43-47.

Segal, H. (1957) ‘Notes on symbol formation’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 38: 391-397; also in The Work of Hanna Segal. New York: Jason Aronson (1981), pp. 49-65.

Sodré, I. (2004) ‘Who’s who? Notes on pathological identifications’, in E. Hargreaves and S. Varchevker (eds.) In Pursuit of Psychic Change: The Betty Joseph Workshop. London: Brunner-Routledge, pp. 53-68.

Sohn, L. (1985) ‘Narcissistic organization, projective identification and the formation of the identificate’. International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 66: 201-213.

Spillius, E. (1992) ‘Clinical experiences of projective identification’, in R. Anderson (ed.) Clinical Lectures on Klein and Bion. London: Routledge, pp. 81-86.

Spillius, E. and O’Shaughnessy, E. (2011) Projective Identification: The Fate of a Concept. London: Routledge.

Steiner, R. (1999) ‘Who influenced whom? And how?’, International Journal of Psychoanalysis. 80: 367-375.

Weiss, E. (1925) ‘Über eine noch un unbeschriebene Phase der Entwicklungzur heterosexuellen Liebe’. Internationale Zeitschrift für Psychoanalyse. 11(4): 429-443.