Interdividual Psychology

Interdividual psychology is a form of understanding human psychology that is grounded in the mimetic relationship and mimetic reciprocity of a subject to a model. It is based on the notion that we are not individuals but interdividuals who are always in relation to other human beings. The implication is that one cannot understand the psychology of a person without understanding that person’s relationships—and the mimetic nature of them—at a deep level. Dreams, for instance, can give insights into a person’s psychology. But their content is somewhat meaningless without an understanding of the relationships that the person has with others. Dreams do not exist in a monadic subject as products of a brain that is in isolation from other brains. Interdividual psychology is still in an early stage of development with few practitioners because mimetic theory is not yet widely known or understood. The French psychiatrist Jean-Michel Oughourlian, one of the founders of this field of psychology, is one of the leading practitioners and has elucidated the ideas in his book The Mimetic Brain, among others.