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Taylor, B. (1998). Anxiety as Symptom and Signal. Edited by Steven P. Roose and Robert A. Glick. Hillsdale, NJ: The Analytic Press, 1995, 200 pp., $29.95.. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 46(1):339-343.

(1998). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 46(1):339-343

Anxiety as Symptom and Signal. Edited by Steven P. Roose and Robert A. Glick. Hillsdale, NJ: The Analytic Press, 1995, 200 pp., $29.95.

Review by:
Beth Taylor

Our field can only benefit from attempts to correlate and reconcile the growing data from diverse investigative approaches, informed by distinct theories of mind and brain, that provide information relevant to our common interest in anxiety. Toward this end, to have the thought of proponents of different points of view presented in one volume is a distinct advance, one for which the editors of Anxiety as Symptom and Signal deserve our appreciation. They have brought together four papers by neurophysiological and developmental researchers and an equal number by psychoanalytic clinicians. The only disappointment is that their distinct points of view are simply juxtaposed, presented alongside one another with an introduction and epilogue to frame them. Like evolution, knowledge will advance faster in a setting in which diverse individuals are allowed, even forced, to interact.

The papers themselves are of high quality. Following an introductory chapter by Glick on theories of anxiety, the book opens with a delightful tour of anxiety through evolution by Hofer. He presents research findings describing behavioral responses to perceived threats to survival in the typhoid bacillus, the sea hare, the rat, and the monkey. Moving forward in evolutionary complexity, the “intervening state between stimulus and response” (p. 35) becomes possible, as do learning, the capacity to reflect on past experiences of danger, and the development of inner awareness of the subjective experience of anxiety.

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