Encounters with desire and psychodynamic supervision perspectives of supervisors and supervisees

Amanda Michael (2001)

This study was an exploratory inquiry into psychodynamic supervisors' and supervisees' narrative descriptions of a supervisory situation that involved an experience of desire. A total of 19 interviews were conducted. Extensive analysis was performed on 16 interviews (8 Supervisors and 8 Supervisees). The interview consisted of 7 major questions designed to explore the phenomenology of desire related to the context of supervision. A qualitative phenomenological and interpretive methodology of analyzing narrative data was explicated. Data analysis involved individual case and cross case analysis. Major categories of desire and substantive themes were identified. The major findings were: (a) Several different types of desire experience were described within cases and across cases; (b) Some form of Intensity of experience was described in all supervisory situations involving an experience of desire; (c) Some sort of Dilemma was present in all but two of the supervisory situations described; and (d) The type of desire discussed, the intensity of the experience, and the dynamics of dilemmas had different emphases related to subjects' role position (Supervisor or Supervisee), The implications of these findings were discussed in relation to the reviewed literature. This project filled a gap in the literature and contributed to expanding the text of psychodynamic supervision discourse by creating space for a deepened understanding of desire in clinical supervision practice.