Some excerpts of a seminar held on May 30, 1992, at the psychotherapy school Il Ruolo Terapeutico of Milan (Italy), published in 1996 with the title La persona e la tecnica. Appunti sulla pratica clinica e la costruzione della teoria psicoanalitica [The Person and the Technique: Notes on the Technique and the Construction of Psychoanalytic Theory], are reprinted (Revised and expanded edition: Milan: FrancoAngeli, 2002). In these pages there are some considerations on the problem of historical reconstruction in psychoanalysis. It is emphasized the importance of not relying only on official, documented history, but of knowing also the emotional vicissitudes and the life of the protagonists of theory construction. The emotional history, transmitted through verbal and informal channels, is a constitutive element of the definition itself of the psychoanalytic discipline.
Keywords: Historical reconstruction in psychoanalysis; Emotional history; Sociology of knowledge; Theory of psychoanalytic technique; Historiography