'It is characteristic of some forms of scientific genius to alter not just what we see in the world, but how we see it - not just the view, but the lens. One thinks of Freud's discovery of the transference, or of Melanie Klein's attention to the play of children. Wilfred Bion's study of groups and group processes also has this quality. More than the content of what he saw and captured in the concepts of two modes of mental functioning in groups and in the differentiation of the basic assumptions, it was the way he saw or, more broadly, the way he sensed the emotional life of the individual in the group, and in the first instance his own, that opened up a quite new territory for exploration. Those of us whose practice takes place primarily in the institutional or social domain can find in his more psychoanalytic work seeds of new thought extending beyond the consulting room.Going "beyond the confines" might perhaps more generally stand as a metaphor for Bion's enterprise.
Franco Borgogno is full professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Turin and training and supervising psychoanalyst of the Italian Psychoanalytical Society. He is author of several papers and books, including 'Psychoanalysis as a Journey', and lectures and supervises throughout Europe and Israel, as well as in North and South America. He is part of the Editorial Board of Italian and International psychoanalytic journals and IPA Chair of the 'Psychoanalysis and University' Committee. In 2010 Borgogno has received the Mary Sigourney Award. Parthenope Bion Talamo was the oldest child of W. R. Bion and a highly regarded analyst in her own right. After schooling in England she went to Italy to study, and later set up in private practice in Turin. She was a member of the Societa Psicoanalitica Italiana (SPI) and of the International Psychoanalytical Association (IPA). She translated many of her father's books and papers into Italian, and wrote extensively on her own theories and observations. She died in Italy in 1998.