Some technical implications of Klein's concept of ‘premature ego development’

ArticleinThe International Journal of Psychoanalysis 88(Pt 4):825-42 · September 2007with11 Reads
Impact Factor: 0.86 · DOI: 10.1516/3218-4471-VV75-0N07 · Source: PubMed


    In this paper, the author revisits the problem of 'premature ego development' first introduced by Melanie Klein in 1930. She also highlights several developments in post-Kleinian thinking since the publication of that paper, which can be seen as offshoots of or complements to Klein's work. The author proposes a link between this category of precocious development and the absence of the experience of what Bion termed the 'containing object.' She puts forward several technical considerations relevant to analytic work with patients who suffer as a result of early developmental failures and presents various clinical vignettes in order to demonstrate the ways in which these considerations take shape in the analytic setting.