Loewald - Psychoanalytic theory seems best suited to explain why psychoanalysis won’t work. As theory was taught when Hans Loewald wrote his early papers, practitioners were led to expect favorable responses that made no sense. He recognized that this was the result
of neglecting the process aspect of Freud’s theory. Proposing that psychic structure is in continuous process within the mind and with the outside world, Loewald was able to bridge the gap between analyst and patient, past and present, old and new meaning, intrapsychic and interpersonal.
He portrayed analytic process as working the same way as ordinary mental process. Although this was probably our most profound elaboration of Freud’s work, and one of the few plausible theories of therapeutic action, Freudian analysts felt threatened, and denounced Loewald as sentimentalizing treatment, infantilizing patients and betraying intrapsychic causality. Interpersonal analystis claimed him for their own. Despite his clarity and explicit caveats, many erroneous caricatures represent Loewald to this day.
KEY WORDS: Hans Loewald, psychoanalytic theory, therapeutic action, structural theory, interpersonal psychology