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(1927). Discussion: Lay Analysis. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 8:174-283.

(1927). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 8:174-283

Discussion: Lay Analysis

The Central Executive of the International Psycho-Analytical Association informs us that it is their intention to bring forward the question of 'Lay Analysis' at the next Congress, so that opinions may be heard and, so far as possible, decisions arrived at in the matter. The Executive desires that the question shall be ventilated as fully as possible before the Congress meets, and has consequently requested the various Branch Societies to further this end by arranging for local discussions on the subject. In order to serve the same purpose we are opening our pages to an international discussion of the question of Lay Analysis.




I propose to discuss this topic at considerable length because it would appear to be one of the most important problems concerning the future of psycho-analysis. To justify the length of the present contribution I may advance the consideration that I have had perhaps unique opportunities of studying various aspects of the question. Of the British Society, which has always been the most friendly towards lay analysis, more than forty per cent. of the members are lay, i.e. non-medical: several of these are analysts of the first rank, both in theory and practice. I have therefore had opportunities for continual and direct observation of the valuable assistance that lay analysts can contribute to psycho-analysis, and this apart from the opportunities afforded by long-standing personal contact with the most distinguished lay analysts on the Continent. On the other hand I doubt if any other centre, even New York, provides more occasions than London for observing the activities of wild analysts, both medical and lay.


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