“The talking cure” implies that it is an exchange of verbal expression that is at the centre of psychotherapeutic change. The aim of this presentation is to offer insight as to how the way that speech is attended to shapes the therapeutic treatment.
A distinction is made between (1) listening to the content of speech, (2) the process between the lines of producing such content, and (3) the intersubjective experience that comes from within the therapist and client in co-constructing such speech exchanges.
The concept of linearity and non-linearity in speech is related to these distinctions including discussion of potential neurobiological underpinnings. In particular the structural, connective, and functional asymmetry of the two halves of the brain are explored. Differences of architecture of cellular columns and their connectivity in the left and right hemispheres are proposed as a foundation for the simultaneous processing/production and reception/prediction of linear and non-linear speech that occupies our clinical practice. Overall, it is emphasised that the talking cure goes beyond an exchange of words and their analysis.