With the ‘historical’ edition on groups and group psychoanalysis, edited by the research association on homogeneous groups, ARGO, we would like to prospect the recapitulation of the many faces that the theme presents and its different levels – in order to be able to link the notion of the present, social and individual, to that of the past that has contributed to producing it. The hope is to succeed in presenting the reader with an evolutionary and future-oriented temporal dimension, as a product of attention to the present. This is not a play on terms, but the feeling that linking individual time to social time can help identity harmony in such an important transitional period as the present.
Moreover, Argo has its roots in the experience of the research group linked to the journal Funzione Gamma and the professorial activities of Prof Claudio Neri at La Sapienza in Rome. There, the first questions about ‘homogeneous function’ in the group and the first distinctions between homogeneous states of mind and distinct, differentiated states were born.
With sincere enthusiasm, Argo’s journal: Group Homogeneity and Differences is publishing jointly with Funzione Gamma, which is hosting it simultaneously, its eighth edition (coming soon, on, to honour a creative filial bond, and to valorise the polycultural and polysemantic experience of the working group.


With the Argo Association, the editorial staff of Group: Homogeneities and Differences, we would particularly like to thank Giancarlo Di Luzio for the initial inspiration on the historical theme of the edition and the dialogue/interview method with the Authors. We would like to thank Honorary Members Claudio Neri and Bob Hinshelwood for their constant presence and contributions, and all members for their commitment, particularly Adelina Detcheva, for her competent willingness to support the work of this eighth historical issue. Heartfelt thanks go to all the Authors, who have shown extraordinary generosity. To the editorial staff of Funzione Gamma, for their hospitality and creative collaboration, to editor Riccardo Williams and Web Master Walter Iacobelli for the order and sense given to the editorial work, to Claudio Neri for his constant inspiration and support. We would like to thank the many readers who provide continuity and vitality to these two journals interested in research on the group, on bonding, on the social and relational processes of the mind, on the resources of the body and mind, individual, inter-individual and social, and on their transitions.


Stefania Marinelli and Silvia Corbella


Resonances and Reflections on the Works of Marinelli, Mellier, and Neri Presented at the “Group and Ritual” Conference


The theme “Group and Ritual” seems of particular significance at this profoundly complex and dramatic historical moment, with the danger of closing into the “private,” provoking a disintegrating and dangerous narcissism. The analytically-led small group can be not only a valid model for dealing with narcissistic closure in the self, but is also a preferable method for healing contemporary malaise, characterized by the inhibition of preconscious functions of creativity and symbolization. This lack is intensified in times of profound change, of transitional Read more


A group-analytic model to create a personal and social dynamic identity


A group-analytic model to create a personal and social dynamic identity.
Identity needs time to build up, to learn flexibility and adaptability while maintaining a sense of self-consistence,a time difficult to find in contemporary society dominated by expectation of “everything at once” We, as psychoanalysts, can help to restart the time in all its articulations from what Pontalis (1997) calledFifth seasonan evoking Read more


The primal scene, the analytically oriented group and the Oedipal configurations


This paper aims to highlight how the changes in social contexts have potentially modified the fantasies and the experiences related to the primal scene and to the oedipal configurations, shrinking the space available to imagination and to the processes of subjectivation, ensuing the risk of negative aftereffects both on the subject and on his approaches to relationships. The author maintains that the analytically oriented group can be the place where the recovery Read more


Presentation, “Sensoriality, corporeity, and sexuality in the group”

All the articles in this issue are linked by the common vision of an holistic relationship between psyche and soma. According to this shared idea, as Corbella pointed out in her contribution, sensoriality is “defined both as an intrinsic quality of living things and as a subjective sensory experience. It is connected to both the mind and the body, providing the very foundations of our sexuality, our experience of pleasure and pain and therefore of our being-in-the-world”. The issue begins with Friedman’s contribution about the dream in the group, which is considered as a point of integration between psyche and soma, where the human being is present in his or her completeness. This issue points out that, when dreams originate from constructive preconscious aspects, they lead to new perspectives and also to new synaptic paths. In particular, in its harmonious and detailed work Notes on sensoriality, corporeity and sexuality in the group, Paola Russo Read more


The group: a privileged mirror for the person


Following a brief account of the psyche-soma relationship in the West, the relation between Love and Eros in the male/female relationship is analyzed, through to the moment of procreation. How seeking a child, pregnancy and childbirth have complex consequences today is underlined, there being problematic repercussions for the couple that are different from those of previous generations. Medically assisted procreation is considered, thanks to clinical examples, as are the negative consequences this experience often gives rise to in the parental couple. Homogeneous groups are desirable in cases of assisted procreation, so that the micro-traumas the parents-to-be will need to face can be shared, talked about and dealt with. Working with these couples allows problems to be well highlighted, problems that, less explicitly, every couple experiences when thinking of becoming and then planning to become parents. The group develops into that protected environment where men and women are stimulated and supported in their communication with each other. It is an environment that can accommodate emotional repercussions of bodily events in which the body and mind have been deprived of words. This may, however, occur in the opposite direction: not just from the body to the mind but from the mind to the body also. The group setting helps in understanding how “mental ill-being” can Read more


Reflection on Foulkes and basic assunts, “Italianiter”


The group becomes a place where bygone lacerations are exhibited, and where in the meantime hopefully a remedy will be found. The scars are the concrete evidence of our tormented stories, that show us our limits and those of others, we are aware of the objective difficulties, but we are closer to finding an area where we can express our life project. To remember, and to be remembered by the group ascribes value to the memory, contributing to our being responsible for our present and future. A profound sense of continuity of the Self, makes it possible to face solitude with contentment, time and space become a potential area of creativity. The group constitutes the ideal family, where it is possible to learn to modulate time and the individual-group dialectic. Nucara, Menarini and Pontalti explain: “the family matrix should be a transitional space (or unsaturated family matrix), from which the child (or person) gives meaning to the precedent generations and culture and contemporaneously gives signification to the new, evolutive project that is unknown”. This quotation for me assumes a fundamental model in my conclusion on Foulkes, Bion, the story and the time. Today we can say a group culture is firmly established in the world thanks to the Read more

sogno e gruppo

Transformational potentials of the peer group


In this paper I would like to examine the transformational potentials that characterise the peer group, in groups of adolescents Read more


Reflections on supervising groups of HIV positive patients with personality disorders


This paper is a critical reflection on the supervision of two groups of HIV positive patients with personality disorders for the duration of five years. The patients all suffered from personality disorders of various degrees, and they had became HIV infected through drug abuse or heterosexual or homosexual contact. The groups met twice a week for an hour and a quarter in the San Luigi Centre at the San Raffaele Hospital in Milan. They were open groups of men and women, counting eight participants in each Read more


Dreaming and Thinking in the Group


If we consider the group and the individual as different points of a continuum, the commonly accepted ontological dichotomy between the individual and the group will become obsolete, from the moment that specifically human individuality will be seen in relational terms, resulting in an encounter not only between different individuals but also an encounter between different forms of groups. When group therapeutic work starts, intrapsychic aspects become communicable through the interactions that transform the unconscious and archaic aspects of communication into socially shared experiences; thus, the experience and the story of the group become individually and internally represented, in a sharing of reciprocal transformation. My principal references in psychoanalysis are the theories on object relations that have largely contributed to psychoanalytical studies thanks to the relational paradigm. This paradigm emphasizes above all the Read more


Presentation, Clinical and training in Homogeneus Group

An introductory synthesis for this edition of Funzione Gamma

Request for dynamic group training in emerging and frontier areas today, is ever more frequent. These areas require interventions targeted at and limited by time; as Giannelli and Zucca write “to new requests, new responses”. Today, emerging institutions and pathologies do not accept long-term periods. In the public, moreover, work groups or therapy groups are often characterised by homogeneity. Homogenous can be the request of users (ex. family members of cardiopath patients or those with neoblastic diseases who meet to deal with changes, anxieties and distress provoked by the onset of the illness; persons who have undergone traumatic experiences and need to elaborate; members of a work group with a common training requirement), homogeneous can also be the diagnosis that Read more