N.13 - Group Psychoanalytic Psychodrama

Introduction, Group Psychoanalytic Psychodrama

How can Psychodrama provide a contribution to group psychotherapy? How is it possible to connect these two practices?
My memories went back to the short experience of training with Jennie and Paul Lemoine and to my recent participation in the passionate “lectures/demonstrations”, given by Luisa Mele and Paola Cecchetti at “La Sapienza” University. Thereafter, the reading of the articles of this number of Funzione Gamma suggested the usefulness of analysing three possible areas of intersection.

1. Action/ acted

Freud considers action- together with attention, numbering, judgement and thought – among the functions used by the Ego in order to achieve awareness of reality.

Bion suggests that action can be placed on different levels as beta element, alpha element, dream- myth-dreaming thought, pre-conception, conception and concept.

2. Rite/drama

Roland Barthes identifies the limiting and protecting quality of rite that enables us to live strong emotions, affections and thoughts. He wrote in his preparatory notes to the course given at College de France 1977-78:

« [….] “that least of rules the ceremony is based on: rite/Ceremony = the disposition of regulating, in an affective order [.] The Ceremony (for example, the anniversary, the birthday) protects like a house: something permitting to live feelings» (1).

3 .Sharing/realisation of control

There is an ever increasing need for “happiness of thinking,” I mean of thought, as a convivial practical experience of ” thinking together” cause of a link of friendship and passion.

We should limit our desire for controlling. Our research may be inspired rather than only simple curiosity. The reward for such an attitude isn’t power but happiness of thinking (2).


(1) The translation is mine « [.] ce peu de règle sur quoi repose la cérémonie : le rite./ Cérémonie = disposition de régulation ; dans l’ordre affectif [.]. / La cérémonie (par exemple, l’anniversaire) protège comme une maison : quelque chose qui permet d’habiter le sentiment »

(2) Paraphrase of a passage from Steps to an Ecology of Mind by Gregory Bateson.

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