Dancing to projective identification in dance movement therapy for couples (DMT-C)

Einat Shuper-Engelhard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Projective identification influences the behavior of couples in unconscious ways, within a dynamic process that may likely sustain destructive and difficult-to-discover-and-resolve conflicts. In projection, non-verbal messages in the couple relationship are interpreted through sensorimotor systems involved in perception. The present research study examines how, and in which areas, awareness of somatic and kinesthetic processes in therapy induces recognition of projection and identification in relations. Nine couples (n = 18) participated in 12 sessions of dance movement therapy for couples (DMT-C). The sessions were documented on video and in the personal diaries of the therapists and the participants. According to the participants, the movement experience gave rise to new perceptions of the couple relationship and the relationship partner with reference to three central issues: manifestation of (a) power; (b) passion; and, (c) support. The discussion will examine ways movement incorporated in therapy helps identify embodied processes that take place in the couple relationship.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101614
JournalArts in Psychotherapy
StatePublished - Feb 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Elsevier Ltd


  • Couples therapy
  • DM/T
  • Dance Movement Therapy
  • Dance therapy
  • Embodiment
  • Projective identification


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