Lentz, J. S. (2018). The Interplay of the Two Hemispheres of the Brain in Psychoanalysis. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 217–230.
Abstract: Several authors have written intriguingly about the right and left hemispheres of the brain. Each hemisphere perceives the world differently, impacting that which it looks upon and reinforcing our particular world view. Notably, the left hemisphere, has always been assumed to be the dominant hemisphere, but only because it has language and is so adept at formulating arguments. The detached mode of the left hemisphere, while useful and necessary to get distance, is no more real than the engaged, imaginative approach of the right hemisphere. Having written about self-sufficiency as a defense against feeling alone and helpless, I now consider these rational, problem solving, answer generating, and planning activities as products of the left hemisphere. The approach that I am suggesting is of calling our patients’ attention to how their left hemisphere overpowers the new, more uncertain voice of the right hemisphere just after it speaks in a session.
Yerushalmi, H. (2018). Loneliness, Closeness and Shared Responsibility in Supervision. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 231–246.
Abstract: This paper examines the meaning of stepping in and out of the formal supervisory roles and allowing relational unbidden experiences in the supervisory space. Such episodes evolve the supervisory relationship because they help to relieve the supervisees of their sense of aloneness in bearing a burdensome clinical responsibility: they change the supervisees’ perspective on therapeutic processes from first person singular to first person plural. Despite their evaluative function and the professional community that they share with supervisees, supervisors can facilitate the emergence of these episodes with the widely accepted practice of imagining therapeutic interactions. Such activity changes the hierarchy and reduces the tension in the supervisory space, and allows unbidden relational experiences to emerge. Thus, challenging the supervisory framework and temporarily stepping out of the formal roles not only strengthens the supervisees’ ethical clinical position but also allows for productive and creative processes in supervision.
Rachmani, V. (2018). Countertransference Dreaming: Life in the Intersubjective Third. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 247–266.
Abstract: In this paper the author asks, “How long is the life of an intersubjective field?” She proposes that it is possible for the field to remain active and instructive even after formal sessions have ended: This occurs in her case of Carla, a young woman who terminates prematurely. Carla enters treatment in a downward spiral of severe trauma symptoms that began subsequent to her rape, a decade earlier. Although Carla’s symptoms diminish and the analysis continues to be productive, it suddenly ends in an impasse, leaving the analyst perplexed and feeling professionally insufficient. Months later, she has three dreams pertaining to Carla and her rape. Largely employing Jessica Benjamin’s recognition theory and her representation of the intersubjective third, as well as contemporary Bionian thinking, the paper depicts how countertransference dreaming is one example of how the intersubjective field can carry on the psychoanalytic function—even outside of formal treatment.
Kogan, I. (2018). Master of the Universe: Scorsese’s “The Wolf of Wall Street” Through a Psychoanalytic Lens. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 267–286.
Abstract: In this essay I wish to present some reflections on Jordan Belfort, the protagonist of the movie “The Wolf of Wall Street” from a psychoanalytic prism. The movie, “The Wolf of Wall Street”, is a 2013 black comedy film directed by Martin Scorsese and adapted by Terence Winter from Belfort’s memoir (2007), of the same name. This movie has already been analyzed from cultural and historical perspectives, with the protagonist representing American culture of the 1980s. I will first summarize some of these views, and then present my psychoanalytic perspective of Jordan’s wish to become “Master of the Universe” (Wolfe, 1987; Grunberger, 1993), as expressed through his abuse of drugs, hyper-sexuality, and his aggressive and self-destructive behavior. As the craving for omnipotence and immortality is a universal wish that has existed from time immemorial, I will draw an analogy between certain aspects and symbolic elements in “The Wolf of Wall Street” and Wagner’s (1848–1872) four epic operas “Der Ring des Nibelungen.” I will conclude with a brief reference to the charismatic appeal of a man like Jordan to the general public.
Balbuena, F. (2018). Harold Searles: Lifelong Work of a Master Clinician. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 287–306.
Abstract: Harold F. Searles was one of the most gifted and innovative clinicians of psychoanalysis. His clinical work arouses interest on its own merit, as well as for the ways in which it shaped his highly innovative thinking. We can only imagine what special processes were developing in Searles’s inner world under the everlasting impact of his experience with psychotic patients and from his life in general. Searles focused extensively on how the psychotic individuals’ mental distortions impacted their capacity to form personal relationships in general, and the role of the analyst and countertransference in treatment. This unique viewpoint helped him sustain a creative commitment to psychotic patients, regarded by many as unsuitable for psychoanalysis.
Miller, I. S. (2018). Book Review. Beyond Doer and Done To: Recognition Theory, Intersubjectivity and the Third, by Jessica Benjamin, Routledge, London and New York, 2018, 278pp. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 308–313.
Abstract: Jessica Benjamin’s Beyond Doer and Done To is revolutionary. It is a manifesto whose consequences, Benjamin explains, are hoped to “reach across the disciplinary barriers and enable non-psychoanalysts to access the social and philosophical implications of intersubjective psychoanalysis” (p. 1). Benjamin’s intention
These, together with Benjamin’s experience of motherhood, study of mother-infant interaction, passionate involvement in second-generation feminism, international political activism, as well as long clinical practice, underlie a powerful document.
Benjamin’s force and clarity are to be appreciated. Her banner of “intersubjective…
Tylim, I. (2018). Book Review. The Age of Perversion: Desire and Technology in Psychoanalysis and Culture by Danielle Knafo and Rocco Lo Bosco, Routledge, Abington and New York, 2017, 283pp. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 314–316.
Abstract: This courageous and original book brings to the fore aspects of contemporary culture and its impact on human sexuality and gender dynamics. Knafo and Lo Bosco far from exploring perversions under a moralizing umbrella, assume a curious and respectful stand in attempting to conceptualize the crossing of virtuality and physicality. The authors assert “we wish to be clear at the outset that our position on perversion is not one that is categorically pejorative or morally judgmental, or one that perpetuates ‘an us versus them’ mentality…” (p. 7). They make a clear recommendation to retain the term perversion because of the “malignant and destructive element on the far side of the perversion spectrum” (p. 25).
This well-organized book manages to sustain a neutral position while attempting to elucidate how technology is shaping human desire in unforeseen ways. The Age of Perversion invites the reader to engage in a comprehensive dialogue between psychoanalysis and other disciplines. Part 1…
Bacciagaluppi, M. (2018). Book Review. Encounters with John Bowlby: Tales of Attachment, by Arturo Ezquerro, Routledge, London and New York, 2017, 266pp. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 317–319.
Abstract: This is a most important book for anyone interested in Bowlby, “the last of the giants in our field,” as my friend Jules Bemporad said to me when Bowlby died in 1990. The author, Arturo Ezquerro, is highly qualified, for he was in supervision with Bowlby at the Tavistock Clinic for 6 years, from 1984 to 1990, so he has a wealth of first-hand information to give his readers.
In the Foreword, Bowlby’s elder son, Sir Richard, mentions traumas endured by his father during childhood. When he was four, his beloved nanny left. When the First World War broke out, Bowlby was 7 years old. His father, Sir Anthony, was away for 5 years, working at the front as an Army surgeon, and when he came back he was a changed man. Sir Richard assumes he suffered from post-traumatic stress.
In the Introduction, the author expresses gratitude to Bowlby for having become a “secure base” for him. The first eight of the book’s twelve chapters are a biography of Bowlby, while the last four concern the author’s…
Finn, M. (2018). Book Review. When Hurt Remains: Relational Perspectives on Therapeutic Failure, edited by Asaf Rolef Ben-Shahar and Rachel Shalit, Karnac, London, 2016, 208pp. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 320–321.
Abstract: Many definitions of clinical failure cast constant shadows in every consulting room. From the beginning of psychoanalysis various collisions have been documented. Anna O. recovered but was no enthusiast of psychoanalysis and Breuer never practiced again. Freud’s account of his failed treatment with Dora has spawned an industry of comment. The sad story of the Wolf Man is yet another memorable failure. Freud himself was very cautious about clinical claims. Psychoanalysis is suspicious even of its own successes with notions like flight into health and transference cure. Not only can we fail to help, but we can also unwittingly make things worse. Analysts of various theoretical orientations argue that we must be willing to take that risk if we are to make any real difference.
Vijayakrishnan, A. (2018). Book Review. The New Analyst’s Guide to the Galaxy: Questions about Contemporary Psychoanalysis, by Antonio Ferro and Luca Nicoli, Translated by Adriano Bompani, Karnac Books, Ltd., London, 2017, 176pp. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp. 322–325.
This is a book that seeks to hand-hold the budding analyst through the universe of psychoanalysis. It attempts to tackle the numerous awkward but pressing questions that arise in the mind of anyone with an emerging interest in psychoanalysis, questions that are seldom asked for fear of sounding naive and uninitiated. The material is presented in the form of a free ranging conversation between Luca Nicoli, a young Italian psychoanalyst and his teacher, Antonino Ferro, a renowned Training and Supervising Analyst from the Italian Psychoanalytical Society known for his work on the Analytic Field (Ferro and Basile, 2009). This exchange is translated from Italian by Adriano Bompani. Nicoli already has three books under his belt and his ease with the subject is evident (Nicoli, 2009, 2014; Nicoli and Bolognini, 2012).
As unscripted conversations go, this book has a rambling sense to it jumping from one topic to another with interesting anecdotes and literary references thrown in for good…
Gianotti, P. (2018). Jack Danielian, Ph. D., 1934–2018. American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 78(3), pp.
Our esteemed colleague and dear friend, Dr. Jack Danielian, died on March 28, 2018. He left a large, indelible mark on many of us—one not easily erased. From 1974 to the present, Jack was a cherished and a prodigious contributor to the work of the American Journal of Psychoanalysis (AJP), both as an author and as a highly respected Editorial Board member. The readers and the editorial board members of the AJP have lost a beloved colleague. Dr. Danielian was also a long-term member and officer in various capacities of the Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis, the society which publishes the AJP.