Zelda Gillian Knight

Zelda Gillian Knight
University of Johannesburg | uj · Faculty of Humanities

PhD

About

61
Publications
60,843
Reads
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191
Citations
Introduction
I enjoy research into processes in psychoanalytic psychotherapy, and thus in exploring psychoanalytical concepts such as the unconscious, transference-counter-transference, projective identification, etc. I theoretically link these concepts to clinical / therapeutic case-work, and other topics such as Intergenerational Transmission of Parental Trauma. I am also interested in psychobiographical research.
Additional affiliations
April 2008 - present
University of Johannesburg
Position
  • Professor (Full)
Description
  • I have extensive research and teaching experience of more than 25 years. My research is mainly on clinical case work in psychoanalytic psychotherapy (process and method). In addition, I am involved in Psychobiographical Research and supervision. MY full CV is available on request.
January 1991 - March 2008
Rhodes University
Position
  • Lecturer
Description
  • I engaged in various topics of research during this period including Transpersonal Psychology
January 1991 - March 2008
Rhodes University
Position
  • Lecturer
Description
  • During this period I taught various modules such as Personality Theories, Gender Studies, Transpersonal Psychology, Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
Education
January 1996 - April 1998
Rhodes University
Field of study
  • Psychology

Publications

Publications (61)
Article
Full-text available
This paper is a discussion paper and it seeks to re-consider the Freudian psychoanalytic concept of interpretation within the relational approach to psychoanalysis. As such, it aims to argue the Freudian approach to interpretation is rejected because it is not relational but involves only the analyst as interpreter of the patient’s experience. Inst...
Article
Full-text available
This paper builds on the ideas of self-psychologists Marian Tolpin and Richard Geist in two ways. Firstly, the idea of using forward edge transference as fostering the promotion of psychological health and well-being. I present two verbatim clinical examples showing the use of forward edge transference, and thus the intersubjective engagement betwe...
Article
Full-text available
This paper is a narrative, phenomenological description of the themes of experiences of some of my South African patients that collectively elicit anxious voices from the unplanned shift to online therapy while living under the world’s longest lockdown in the shadow of the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. This paper thus presents a thematic de...
Article
Full-text available
The hallmark of being human is to tell stories. The stories told give meaning to the experience, and it is in telling stories about our experience, that we begin the process of meaning-making. Psychotherapy is storytelling, and in our consultation room we, as psychotherapists, listen to the tales told. This paper documents my story in response to s...
Article
Full-text available
Heinz Kohut investigated empathy in psychoanalysis in the mid-1950s and found it to be a powerful way to connect to, and be with, his patients. Since then, relatively few recent clinical cases of empathy have emerged, while theoretical discussion of empathy seems to be the norm. Moreover, empathy has not been linked to the development of holding an...
Chapter
Both description and interpretive understanding are the long established hallmarks of phenomenology and phenomenological research. If the psychobiography as a case study includes description and interpretation it can be aligned with phenomenology. As such, it can be positioned as a phenomenological-hermeneutic case study. With an emphasis on life-n...
Chapter
This chapter is an example of psychobiographical research, and deliberately employs the object relations theory of Donald Winnicott to explore the life narrative of the selected subject, Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel (1883–1971). Chanel—also known as, and popularly referred to as Coco Chanel—was a 20th century couturier and fashion icon. She challenged...
Article
Full-text available
Taking inspiration from Frommer, this paper is part of a shift towards incorporating death as a defining psychic issue. With a sense that I am surrounded by death, the author presents two brief vignettes of clinical cases to illustrate the impact of the therapist’s relationship with death on the therapeutic process. Each case shows a different leve...
Article
Full-text available
Using the construct of projective identification and integrating it with the body of literature on intergenerational transmission of unsymbolized parental trauma, I describe the case of an adult black South African woman called Sibulelo. It is suggested that Sibulelo has unconsciously identified with the disavowed parents and grandparents trauma th...
Article
Full-text available
This article sets out to explore the researcher’s transference in psychoanalytically informed qualitative research. To this end, it is suggested the researcher’s transference is a) rooted in the past/childhood experiences and events and b) occurs in all research activities, such as interviews. The researcher’s transference may have some elements of...
Article
Full-text available
Names and naming practices have been the focus of social science research for several years. Our name, as part of our identity, shapes and defines our sense of self. When clients start psychotherapy they first introduce themselves by giving their names. Sometimes they speak the names of their parents and grandparents. This speaking of the collectiv...
Article
Full-text available
There are a small group of mature adults in their 50s and 60s, members of the so-called third age that arrive at the door for psychotherapy. As clients, they want to explore an overwhelming sense of being dis-located in space and time, and at odds with where they find themselves living. They have a deep and profound sense of not belonging and of be...
Article
Full-text available
Using the construct of projective identification and integrating it with the body of literature on intergenerational transmission of unsymbolized parental trauma, I describe the case of an adult daughter that illustrates intergenerational transmission of unsymbolized parental trauma. It is suggested that the daughter has unconsciously identified wi...
Article
Full-text available
Just as Freud used stages of psychosexual development to ground his model of psychoanalysis, it is possible to do the same with Erik Erikson's stages of development with regards to a model of psychodynamic psychotherapy. This paper proposes an eight-stage model of psychodynamic psychotherapy linked to Erik Erikson's eight stages of psychosocial dev...
Book
At some point, the therapeutic relationship takes on a certain shape that invites clients to ‘speak their story’ with all of its pain, hope and angst, and for therapists to become ‘containers’ of this emotional world of patient. In this light, psychotherapy is the art of emotional engagement or ‘the art of feeling’. This book contains nine chapters...
Chapter
Full-text available
Traditionally little was written about the future in psychoanalysis. This chapter explores the experience of the future because without a sense of the future, patients cannot move foreword psychologically. The original Freudian idea of the compulsion to repeat has implications for how the future is experienced and conceptualised. In this chapter, t...
Chapter
Full-text available
My paper sets out to do a re-reading of the Oedipus complex through the re-reading of Thomas Ogden’s reading of Loewald’s ‘Waning of the Oedipus complex’. This re-reading is used as a springboard to develop some new ideas regarding the Oedipus complex. Within this context, it is suggested that if one returns to the original Greek myth itself, which...
Article
Full-text available
The self as a psychological construct, and the self in relation to the other has been discussed in psychological and sociological literature for decades, but not much attention has been given to the psychological development of the self in relation to the social construction of prejudice. The primary aim of this article is to explore the self in pr...
Chapter
Full-text available
The therapeutic relationship can be difficult to navigate particularly when communication is projected through the unsaid or unconscious processes in the room. The therapist is tasked with being able to detect the unsaid through implicit or explicit countertransference. How the therapist deciphers the communication and works with the experienced co...
Chapter
Full-text available
The aim of the chapter, in addition to presenting a theoretical conceptualization that makes use of both the psychodynamic and social processes involved in prejudice, is to make use of the case of the town of Orania in South Africa to illustrate such processes. As a way of extending what is already known about prejudice, some additional proposals h...
Article
Full-text available
In post-apartheid South Africa we speak about race extensively. It permeates our workplace, weaves a thread through the fabric of our professional and personal lives, as well as our private conversations and public interactions with others. From within psychoanalytic theory, the thread weaves through the unknown content of our racialized unconsciou...
Article
Full-text available
This paper records four stories that emerged from four group therapy members. These stories are stories of fundamentally broken hearts. I utilise this material to address two psychological phenomena in group therapy - self-disclosure and the corrective emotional experience. The overarching theoretical framework is the existential approach to group...
Article
Full-text available
Postmodernism opens up a new way of thinking about how life is understood and how knowledge is structured, and as such, it demands that one must accept that there have been major shifts in psychoanalytic thinking since Freud's time. The relational psychoanalytic perspective understands and structures knowledge differently from traditional psychoana...
Article
Full-text available
Gavin Ivey's critique would have benefited from an in-depth appreciation of analytical literature that positions psychoanalysis today as fundamentally and substantially different to the world in which psychoanalysis first emerged. Such changes are described as an 'evolution' within postmodern psychoanalysis, something that I prefaced in my paper. T...
Article
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The aim of this article is to suggest that relational psychoanalysis may be a useful approach for working with clients from indigenous African cultures. In particular, the article considers the utility of relational psychoanalysis to understanding and enacting the therapeutic relationship with clients from an indigenous African cultural background....
Article
Full-text available
The motivation for this article grew out of work done by Lysaker, Johannesen, and Lysaker (2005), which explores the experience of being as a person with schizophrenia in relation to other individuals, and shows schizophrenic intersubjectivity as a potentially horrifying and disintegrating experience. The article, through a phenomenologically infor...
Article
Full-text available
This theoretical paper explores the concept of evil, dislodged from its philosophical and religious underpinnings, and the concept of aggression from within a contemporary psychoanalytical perspective, and links these two concepts in such a way that the concept of evil is located psychologically and (re)defined as destructive aggression that emerge...
Article
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This article documents the definition and context of serial murder. The main theoretical framework adopted is object relations theories which have been particularly renowned for drawing close attention to the process and development of the early dyadic mother-infant relationship as a primary departure point for understanding both healthy and pathol...
Article
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In this article the classical concept and the use of the 'corrective emotional experience' in psychotherapy is described. This concept is not widely accepted within the standpoint of contemporary psychoanalytic psychotherapy and object relations theories. It has an unfavorable reputation. However, this paper does not advocate discarding this therap...
Article
Full-text available
This article is broadly based within a psychodynamic approach to psychotherapy, drawing on object relations theories and, more specifically, on an object relations model outlined by Frank Summers, namely, relational psychoanalysis. The article explores the notion that because attachment to the object is central to the development of a sense of iden...
Article
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Informed by the investigative thrust of phenomenological inquiry and the ‘phenomenology of intersubjectivity’, the overarching aim of this article is to provide an accurate illumination of the experience of being diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder, and thus being ‘a labelled individual’. This article is based on research that sought to understan...
Article
Theoretically this thesis was grounded in the discourse of transpersonal psychology and the related discourse of transpersonal feminism. The focus was on a particular category of transpersonal phenomena - past-life experiences. These experiences were viewed from a poetic and therapeutic perspective as being healing stories of the unconscious that s...
Article
The psychological literature reflects that psychologists, psychiatrists and psychotherapists working seriously and systematically with so-called ‘past-life’ experiences in psychotherapy appears to be on the increase, also in South Africa. In recent years the subject of ‘past-life’ experiences has become a major focus in several modes of therapy, an...
Article
One of the major aims of school guidance and counselling programmes is to promote personal growth. A practice which is enjoying continuing attention and is claimed as being a valuable tool for personal growth, is meditation. Could meditation be used profitably in the school situation? This case study reports on the experiences of a high school girl...

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Projects

Projects (2)
Project
To develop/refine/confirm psychoanalytic theories / concepts using clinical case work.
Project
The aim of this project is to analyse lives of extraordinary individuals by using specific psychological theories.