The Infinity of the Unsaid
Unformulated Experience, Language, and the Nonverbal
Donnel Stern has been a key figure in the advancement of interpersonal and relational psychoanalysis since his initial writings on unformulated experience in the 1980s, in which he offered a fresh perspective on what constitutes the unconscious. Since then, he has consistently been on the cutting edge of theoretical developments in the unconscious and dissociation, and he continues such innovation in his new book, The Infinity of the Unsaid: Unformulated Experience, Language, and the Nonverbal (Routledge, 2019). In the book, he addresses the place of nonverbal meaning in unformulated experience and psychoanalytic practice. In our interview, we discuss the inspiration for this evolution in his theory and its implications for our understanding of how psychotherapy works. This episode will be of interest to anyone that is fascinated by the workings talk therapy and the unconscious mind.
Donnel Stern is a training and supervising analyst at William Alanson White Institute in New York City and adjunct clinical professor of psychology and clinical consultant at NYU Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis. He is the founder and editor of the Routledge book series Psychoanalysis in a New Key and author and editor of many articles and books. His most recent authored book is Relational Freedom: Emergent Properties of the Interpersonal Field (Routledge, 2015), and his landmark book, which started it all, is Unformulated Experience: From Dissociation to Imagination in Psychoanalysis (Routledge, 2003).
Eugenio Duarte, Ph.D. is a psychologist and psychoanalyst practicing in Miami. He treats individuals and couples, with specialties in gender and sexuality, eating and body image problems, and relationship issues. He is also a university psychologist at Florida International University’s Counseling and Psychological Services Center, where he coordinates the eating disorders service. He is a graduate and faculty of William Alanson White Institute and former chair of their LGBTQ Study Group. He is also a contributing author to the book Introduction to Contemporary Psychoanalysis: Defining Terms and Building Bridges (Routledge, 2018).