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Tuckett, D. (2001). Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy In This Journal. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 82(3):429-430.

(2001). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 82(3):429-430

Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy In This Journal

David Tuckett

This issue sees the publication (page 563) of Sylvia O'Neill's paper, describing in detail her once-weekly treatment of a male anorexic patient seen at the Tavistock Clinic—a fully publicly funded institution within the National Health Service in London. Trained at the Tavistock (managed and mostly staffed by psychoanalysts but not an IPA Training Institute), the author describes a clinical condition barely described in any detail in our literature and gives a detailed account of the work. The paper was not specially solicited by the Editors and was assessed within the context of the double-blind anonymous review and revision processes we have established and to which the Journal is committed.

This is not the first occasion that a paper containing clinical material from a low-frequency treatment has been published in the Journal. Nor is it the first occasion when we have published clinical material by someone who is not in a formal and bureaucratic sense a psychoanalyst.

I draw attention to the publication of Sylvia O'Neill's paper for several reasons. First, I want to emphasise that publication of clinical work in the Journal is available to authors based on what they argue and how they support it. Assessment is done without knowing who they are. Second, I think it should be this Journal's role to try to facilitate an ongoing debate as to what constitutes psychoanalytic treatment and under what conditions it is effective. Prescribing the answer in advance as to what psychoanalytic treatment is cannot do this.

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