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Anna Freud: A Biography (2nd Edition) by Elisabeth Young-Bruehl

By Elisabeth Young-Bruehl

This version of Elisabeth Young-Bruehl's definitive biography of pioneering baby analyst Anna Freud includes—among different new features—a significant retrospective creation by means of the author.

“Young-Bruehl’s description of 1 of the main complicated yet really good lighting fixtures in psychoanalytic heritage has stood as a beacon to scholars of psychoanalytic heritage. it's the most sensible such a lot rigorously crafted biography of any psychoanalyst and it illuminates the whole culture with a readability that merely the exploration of the lifetime of the daughter of the founding father of the circulate may be able to supply. it's a superbly written insightful and remarkably edifying piece of labor. the easiest has simply obtained better.”
-- Peter Fonagy, Freud Memorial Professor of Psychoanalysis, college university London

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Additional resources for Anna Freud: A Biography (2nd Edition)

Example text

And this perspective would also encompass the demand of the health insurers, that is of the legislators, for proof of the effectiveness of the analytic method. And finally, our fees also reflect the value that society places on analytic work. By specifying these perspectives we intended to see the knowledge psycho­ analysis already has about aims preserved, but we also wanted to increase awareness as a prelude to necessary changes. We also had in mind communi­ cation with those neighbouring disciplines that, similarly, have something to say about aims.

In those early days, it was, above all, interpretations that should explore the depths of unconscious wishes and fears: creating insight was supposed to make a better understanding of one’s history possible, and to support healing. But already in the early 1920s the conviction grew that analysis was not so much an intellectual but rather an affective process centring upon new editions of the patient’s old conflicts in the relationship with the analyst. And only through this resuscitation of emotional experiences in such a trans­ ference was the ego said to have hitherto hidden material at its disposal – the aim of analysis was the working on, and finally the dissolution of, this trans­ ference.

And this is also a question about happiness, not only for patients. After all, ancient philosophy actually began with the question about the truth of knowledge but was also concerned with the question of how one should live as a human being. There seems to be no simple answer – Freud has only highlighted another essential facet with his indication of the importance of unconscious factors. The definition of a treatment aim always remains linked with this question about the good life, it therefore always has an evaluative aspect, to which the answer cannot only be descriptive.

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