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Hinshelwood, B. (1994). Editorial. Brit. J. Psychother., 10(4):485-487.

(1994). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 10(4):485-487


Bob Hinshelwood

Development, as psychotherapists all know, is hard won. And I can reflect back on ten years of helping the Journal to develop, from the days when it was a worried gleam in the eye to the present when it is established as a central publication for the profession. Those anxious early days were compounded by the number of similar projects that sprouted up at the same time. No-one knew if the profession would take to the written word and write as well as read. Even then we were forced to question ‘market forces’ and wonder how it would deal with us. In this case, of course, it has been a real market - with co-operation as well as merely cut-throat competition. All development has to negotiate that blend of cutting throats with solid and supportive co-operation. Otherwise development becomes polarised as either a frightening set of compulsions and domination; or sentimentalised.

Christina Wieland describes this ambivalence and the phantasies that compose the ‘monstrous underside’ to development and creation in its most stark form - having babies. She is concerned about the denial of the ambivalence towards reproductive technology which is then left, unconsciously, to loom in frightening form behind the obstetric activity. In this area David Mann considers castration anxiety as the developmental anxiety aroused through differences and the wished-for retreat into self-castration which abolishes, supposedly, sexual difference. Vivienne Lewin describes personal development in similar terms, the struggle to develop a separateness.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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