N.3 - Bion and Foulkes

How Foulkesian was Bion?

Abstract

If we want to enrich our ideas, we must study the problems of holding together caring and hating, the individual and the social. We each need to face the difficult emotional significance of the issues of group therapy, and group life. We need to remember it is an easy option to go for one position or the other. We do that for comfort rather than for truth. We need to establish the tension as a creative one. If influences that drove Bion and Foulkes, and their followers, towards polarised positions are valid, it is important for us now to understand how we each position ourselves. If we are to follow Malcolm’s initial plan of ‘ongoing dialogues between Foulkesian and other group-as-a-whole approaches’, we must understand how we are gripped in a polarising dialectic by the history of our profession.

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