Reflecting on Joyce Slochower’s pages, Lorenzini reflects on the endless polemics that characterized the discussion on empathy, references to the self and developmental deficits among relational clinicians. He is convinced that this confusion derives from a dangerous conceptual void directly related to the revolution tried by self psychologies and the relational movement: to put subjectivity at the centre of the psychological life of human beings. This is why he starts his discussion with an effort at clarifying some basic tenets on subjectivity and consciousness. He then continues by suggesting that the false dichotomy that opposes holding and mutuality depends on the frequent fallacy of locating subjectivity at the emotional level of consciousness. In procedural terms holding and mutuality can find a union and contribute to creating the indispensable area for cultivating the development of the patient’s subjectivity.
Keywords: Holding, consciousness, subjectivity, self, mutuality, relational tendency