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Conran, M. (1979). The Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review: Edited by Bo Larsson. Sweden: Universitetsforlaget. 1978, Volume 1.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 60:263-265.

(1979). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 60:263-265

The Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review: Edited by Bo Larsson. Sweden: Universitetsforlaget. 1978, Volume 1.

Review by:
Michael Conran

The advent of a new psychoanalytic journal in the English language is an important matter. When, additionally, that journal heralds from Scandinavia, with its already established international reputation for scientific publications in English, the importance is underlined. It is perhaps rarely necessary for English-speaking psychoanalysts, in common with their fellow scientists, to contemplate the fierce selective forces to which their non-English-speaking colleagues are exposed, as they languish in the lingua franca of the scientific community. To be an educated person in a Scandinavian country, fluency in English is a sine qua non. In Finland, where the indigenous language is altogether unrelated to any European language other than Magyar, Swedish is the second and compulsory language, before English, Russian and German. Moreover, for the psychoanalyst it is not a matter of mastering scientific English, but of acquiring a facility with the complexity and richness of its spoken and literary usage.

Consider for one moment the problems confronting an analyst in a small non-English-speaking country who feels he has some original ideas he wishes to develop. He is analysing and thinking in his native tongue, or quite commonly the tongue he acquired as an immigrant. The moment he puts pen to paper, the need to express himself clearly—especially to himself—modifies and develops the formless thoughts, the imprecise and ambiguous spech. If he wishes to do this in English, he must either conduct his thinking in English at the moment of writing, or he must translate or pay someone to translate what he has written, and then often pay someone else to correct it.

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