Relational Concepts in Psychoanalysis: An Integration
By Stephen A. Mitchell
* Publisher: Harvard University Press
* Number Of Pages: 326
* Publication Date: 1988-11-15
* ISBN-10 / ASIN: 0674754115
* ISBN-13 / EAN: 9780674754119
Summary: Complicated concepts are easier to understand
I appreciate Mitchell's ability to present psychoanalytic constructs and theories in an understandable manner. Make sure to read the introduction; it's a great review / introduction to this material.
Summary: a brilliant synthesis
Stephen Mitchell was one of the original group of analysts who began to differentiate (along with Jay Greenberg) between drive/defense models of the self (e.g., Freud) and relational models. In this book Mitchell applies the relational perspective to several areas of clinical concern, including sexuality, childhood development, narcissism, and theories of change and healing. I recommend this book in the Theories of Depth Psychology graduate courses I teach; it is clear and refreshing and brings analytic thought a new and vitalizing emphasis on image, metaphor, story, and other aspects of the weave of relations we all remain in even when alone.
Summary: most influential book in psychoanalysis I've read
I know people say this all the time, but I cannot recommend this book enough. As a developing clinician, this book has given me a tremendous advantage in conceptualizing cases. Mitchell draws on the best of the best in psychoanalysis and presents a very clear, convincing, and amazingly helpful integration.
Summary: Impressively clear and careful
This book is one of the most clear, careful, and rigorous contemporary psychoanalytic theoretical texts around. Mitchell writes with the logic and incisiveness of an analytic philosopher or logician. Although one might wish his depictions of specific clinical examples were a bit more textured and colorful, the theoretical arguments here are some of the best and most clearly stated around. I hope that more contemporary psychoanalytic theorists will become able to achieve this level of theoretical clarity and rigor.
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