Construction in Analysis


We do not pretend that an individual construction is anything more than a conjecture which awaits examination, confirmation or rejection. We claim no authority for it, we require no direct agreement from the patient, nor do we argue with him if at first he denies it.

Sigmund Freud, 1938

Curator's Comments

What makes an analyst's interpretation true? What makes it effective? On what basis should it be confirmed or rejected? The issue of how to judge analytic interpretations has remained controversial, from Freud's time to our own.


Freud used the word "construction" to mean an extensive interpretation that aims to reconstruct a portion of a person's past, usually a person's childhood.

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