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Gabbard, G.O. (1996). Quest For Answers: A Primer Of Understanding And Treating Severe Personality Disorders. By Salman Akhtar, M.D. Northvale, NJ: Aronson, 1995, 240 pp., $30.00.. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 44:1000.

(1996). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 44:1000

Quest For Answers: A Primer Of Understanding And Treating Severe Personality Disorders. By Salman Akhtar, M.D. Northvale, NJ: Aronson, 1995, 240 pp., $30.00.

Review by:
Glen O. Gabbard

The author, a major contributor to the psychoanalytic understanding of serious personality disorders, has employed a creative format to acquaint beginning students with this complex area. He has divided the book into six parts, ranging from diagnosis through structure and dynamics to psychotherapy and psychoanalysis of severe personality disorders. In each part, the material is arranged as a series of questions and answers. The questions typify the concerns of beginning psychotherapists, and Akhtar's answers are clear and succinct, while also being scholarly. He regularly provides references at the end of his brief one- or two-page answers to direct the student toward further readings.

While not sufficiently comprehensive to be used as a textbook, this little book could be quite useful as a kind of handbook for the psychiatry resident or graduate student in the mental health professions. It would also serve as a helpful overview for a young psychotherapist starting out work with a patient who suffers from serious character pathology.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

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