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Masters, J. (2018). Re-encountering Jung: Analytical Psychology and Contemporary Psychoanalysis edited by Robin S. Brown. Published by Routledge, London, 2017; 220 pp, £31.99 paperback. Brit. J. Psychother., 34(3):508-511.

(2018). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 34(3):508-511

Re-encountering Jung: Analytical Psychology and Contemporary Psychoanalysis edited by Robin S. Brown. Published by Routledge, London, 2017; 220 pp, £31.99 paperback

Review by:
Julian Masters

This dense but rewarding book of essays boasts an impressive array of writers, hailing mainly from the UK and the US but also with contributors from Italy, South Africa and Switzerland. The content of the book ranges across a broad array of topics, pitching Jungian and post-Jungian theory not only against (and with) Freud but also, Lacan, Kohut, Benjamin, Bion and Klein. Contemporary findings from the fields of attachment and developmental psychology are also brought to the table.

The scene is set beautifully by R.D. Hinshelwood in a short essay about the pioneering days of psychoanalysis in which he takes the heat off the principal players and focuses attention instead on the choruses in their respective cultural habitats of Zurich and Vienna. Hinshelwood remarks; ‘each group had a history, a certain place in the world, specific aims and a characteristic culture’ (p. 20).

This was all a long time ago and, as remarks Angela Connolly in her essay (‘the iconic and aesthetic turn in depth psychology’), ‘We are now in a position to critique the theories of our illustrious predecessors’ (p. 73). This attitude is, I think, realized throughout the book by the variety of ways these writers attempt to chart the perilous waters between the Scylla and Charybdis of Freudian and Jungian traditions.

Rapprochement is of course only feasible when the ground has been prepared, where there is already a loosening of sharp and hostile tribal distinction.

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