Embodiment of Personality Development in the Context of Psychodynamic Movement Analysis

The study explores the embodiment approach of a movement analysis method developed by Judith S. Kestenberg and her research group. The Kestenberg Movement Profile (KMP) can be understood as a psychodynamic theory of movement development and a psychoanalytic assessment of movement behaviour. Kestenberg with her focus on movement, movement development, and movement expression took a unique position in analytical circles on embodiment of emotions, cognition and the relational patterns, which she viewed as the somatic ground of personality development. As a dance-movement therapist and as a movement analyst trained in the Kestenberg Movement Profile, I attempt to introduce concepts of embodiment that Kestenberg represented within psychoanalysis. The theoretical roots of the KMP are linked to Freudian psychosexual development theory and drive-theory; overall it could be considered as a complex integration of self-psychology, attachment theory and object relationship theories. The KMP is applied predominantly in the field of dance-movement therapy as a tool of personality assessment. It has also been used to measure the efficacy of the dance-therapeutic process. In addition to dance-movement psychotherapy, the KMP has been employed in non-verbal behaviour research, psychoanalytic therapy, child psychotherapy, special education, and family support. This study primarily aims to present the integrative, dynamic theory of the KMP with its concept of embodiment in focus. 


Released: Replika 121–122, 63–71.
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