From case study to single case research: A perennial issue? The red thread of this paper covers the journey from narration to observation. Case histories stood at the cradle of the psychoanalytic discovery tour; this paradigm comprises not only the classic pieces of Freud, but shapes the reporting style in the scientific community until today. An oral tradition combined with loosely written case studies constituted the major means of reporting the insights gained by introducing the therapeutic situation as a field for discovery oriented research. Wallerstein & Sampson’s 1971 paper marks a turning point in the field’s attention to the problematic situation. It became more and more clear that the ongoing oscillation between clinical hypothesis creating and the formal testing of them is crucial for the development of clinical psychoanalysis as a science.
Keywords: Single case research; Psychoanalysis; History; Epistemology; Evidence