Psychoanalysis.  2020 Jan;31(1):11-21. 10.18529/psychoanal.2020.31.1.11.

A Psychodynamic Formulation: The Case of Iron Man

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Yong-In Mental Hospital, Yongin, Korea


Psychodynamic formulation is a hypothesis about how a person’s unconscious thoughts, feelings, and impulses cause current mental difficulties, problems, and behavioral patterns. As well as functioning as a diagnostic map, it guides every aspect of the treatment in psychiatric clinical settings. Although the psychodynamic formulation would always be an essential part of psychi-atric training, the methodology and its applications have not been actively presented. In this paper, we present one sample formu-lation using a movie character “Tony Stark” (well known as “Iron man” in the Marvel films). This study explores the possibility of applying the movie character to formulation training. Also, this study illustrates the value of psychodynamic formulation as a promising hermeneutic tool for aesthetic insight as well as a clinical tool.


Psychodynamic formulation; Iron man; Tony Stark
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