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Article
May 7, 1955

The Psychiatric Interview

JAMA. 1955;158(1):89. doi:10.1001/jama.1955.02960010091038

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Abstract

This volume consists of material gathered from several series of lectures and notebooks and edited by a group from the William Alanson White Psychiatric Foundation. It is primarily directed to psychiatrists but also to those who are interested in dynamic interviewing. Sullivan regards the interview as a special aspect of the phenomenon of interpersonal relations in which the interaction of the interviewer and the patient apparently is studied simultaneously by the interviewer. Despite the fact that the editors state that they have deleted repetitions and digressions, the material still seems rambling and diffuse. This is in part due to the vague and obscure thinking of Sullivan, particularly in respect to theoretical formulations. The use of his special terminology for various psychic functions that have been quite adequately detailed in many standard psychoanalytic texts only adds to the confusion; for example, to describe transference reactions in the interviews as "parataxic distortions"

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