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Silverstone, J. (2014). Appreciation. Brit. J. Psychother., 30(1):101-103.

(2014). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 30(1):101-103

The Work of Bernardine Bishop 1932-2013

Appreciation

Jennifer Silverstone

Bernardine Bishop personified the model of a caring, dedicated psychotherapist, devoted to her patients and colleagues in a way that seems nowadays almost to represent a bygone age. She taught widely on psychoanalytic theory for many years, lecturing generations of students, many of whom went on to attend her enthralling clinical seminars. Her death marked for me the end of an era, coming as it did when our training organization, the London Centre for Psychotherapy, merged with two others to become the British Psychotherapy Foundation. The London Centre for Psychotherapy was where Bernardine and I first met and got to know each other.

Bernardine was generous in giving her time to institutional tasks and offered encouragement to others freely. She was a true support to me in the various roles I had in the organization. On committees (she was chairwoman of both the Training Therapist Committee and the Membership Committee at the LCP) and in public meetings she was able to hold a particular space for thinking: she had a way of turning a phrase, or putting ideas together with a succinct mixture of humour and erudition that made her contributions so particular and valuable. There was never a time that she refused a task or bucked responsibility. It was in her nature to be reparative, and give she did, to friends, colleagues and the LCP unstintingly, throughout her professional and private life.

The obituaries that have appeared (Guardian, 2013a, Daily Telegraph, 2013, Catholic Herald, 2013) outlined Bernardine's early life and cite her appearance, fresh out of her convent school, as a witness for the defence at the Lady Chatterley Trial in 1960 - the first moment she came into the public eye.

[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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