Psychoanalysis > Techniques

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As you know, psychoanalysis is interested in exploration of the unconscious mind in order to cure. In this respect, it applies specific techniques or methods that we intend to present in this section. These methods were first developed by Sigmund Freud.

Below is the list of these basic methods. Some of them are further explained if you click the links that lead to corresponding articles published on this site.

- Anamnesis - resembles perfectly to a certain extent the classical anamnesis known in the practice of general medicine. The interpretation of the biographic (personal) events during the psychoanalytic cure may settle the neurotic frame of the individual's psychopathology. Learn more...

- Free Associations Method - This method replaced hypnosis in Freud's therapy. It consists in gathering the free associations provided by the patient during the cure. These associations points to the inner conflicts and repressed drives that made the symptoms. Learn more...

- Interpretation of Freudian Slips and Mistakes - This is a remarkable contribution of Freud to the exploration of the unconscious. For most of us the so-called "faulty acts" - as for instance lapses and slips of all kinds - have no contextual significance for our psychic life. Freud is the first scientist to detect the significance of slips and mistakes, starting from the premise, acknowledged in practice, of the determinism of all our psychic processes. Learn more...

- Analysis/Interpretation of Dreams - By far the most important psychoanalytic technique, also called the royal road to the unconscious by Freud himself, dream interpretation is considered by him an irreplaceable means to access the unconscious. The first dream ever interpreted in Freud's style is the Irma's injection published in his Interpretation of Dreams. Learn more...

Freud and Dreams pictureFreud and Dreams
Need to learn more about how Freud proceeds with dreams? Check out our 12-lesson email course treating of this topic here.

- Analysis/Interpretation of Symbols - Symbols occur in dreams, fantasies, fairy tales and other such psychical and cultural products, and they may be interpreted in the same way as dreams. Freud claims that most of such symbols are sexual. Learn more...

- Analysis of transference is one of the basic psychoanalytic methods. It concerns mainly the psychoanalytic cure as it deals with the unconscious feelings the patient projects upon his/her analyst. The topic is also close related to the counter-transference.

A short paper treating of this topic is offered free to students who took our email course on what is psychoanalysis. More about this paper here.

Several Freud's quotes on transference may be found here.


  • Read also: Psychoanalytic Therapy
  • Further Resources - Learn more about the psychoanalysis techniques by taking our email course treating of this topic -> click here to see how.

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