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Wenkart, A. (1966). The Changing Image of Psychoanalysis. Am. J. Psychoanal., 26:183-189.

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(1966). American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 26:183-189

The Changing Image of Psychoanalysis Related Papers

Antonia Wenkart, M.D.


It is unthinkable to conceive of an image of man, and therefore an image of psychoanalysis, at a standstill, in a static state. With the cataclysmic upheavals of the last decades and the rapid changes and progress in natural science, a decisive change in living conditions has come about as well as in our knowledge of man and our ideas regarding mental ills. Hence we will not be surprised at the change in psychoanalytic treatment along with the altered image of psychoanalysis.

Speaking from the platform of the Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis, I am encouraged to question the validity of a few accepted notions. I hope to contribute something to heretofore tenuous assumptions, and sketch in the silhouette of the new image of psychoanalysis.

My first line of questioning is directed toward our holistic approach. What is the “whole”? From the premise of the so-called neo-Freudian approach of the 1920's and the 1930's, this seems appropriate. Freud's genetic view of instincts and the therapeutic achievement of psychoanalysis clearly envisaged human nature as divided into inborn instincts and noninstinctual characteristics. Human existence was divided into inner psychic processes and outer reality. The goal of psychoanalysis was to effect change and adjustment to outer reality.

Then Dr. Horney's ideas about morality of evolution cut across the division. Dr. Horney's concept of the real self not only implied a general and more comprehensive

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