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Volkan, V.D. (1990). Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Migration and Exile: By Leon Grinberg and Rebeca Grinberg. New Haven: Yale University Press. 1989. Pp. 230.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 71:541-543.

(1990). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 71:541-543

Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Migration and Exile: By Leon Grinberg and Rebeca Grinberg. New Haven: Yale University Press. 1989. Pp. 230.

Review by:
Vamik D. Volkan

This is a remarkably timely book, and at the same time a timeless one; consideration of the psychology of migration will help us understand the dilemmas of the many people recently liberated from behind the Iron Curtain, as well as those of others elsewhere who have become refugees. Migration and exile, with their attendant problems, have in fact occurred throughout human history.

The Grinbergs have worked in three countries, and have themselves been 'transplanted' on several occasions; thus their experience makes them 'participant observers' in the best sense and justifies their offering psychoanalytic observations on various kinds of migration and exile. Although other analysts have addressed the issues involved, as far as I know the Grinbergs' is the first attempt to make a comprehensive psychoanalytic study of immigrants of all types and of those they leave behind, and they have succeeded admirably. Their book, which is divided into 21 chapters, starts with myths about migration and exile. They point to the first migration, that of Adam and Eve forced to leave the Garden of Eden, and proceed to a study of migration as trauma and a crisis.

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