Illustrations from one infant observation are used to discuss the early development of the capacity to learn and develop the mind. A description of the psychoanalytic theory of learning beginning with Freud and moving to Klein, Bion and Winnicott is the theoretical context for the illustrations. The paper moves on to discuss hypotheses about the baby’s mental and cognitive development. The baby and his mother are able, the author suggests, to work through a less than ideal start to their relationship and to learn together in a way that fosters creative learning from experience
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