|Eckardt, M.H. (2004). Freeing the Human Spirit: A Psychiatrist's Journal, by Louis B. Fierman, Blue Dolphin Publishing, Nevada City, CA, 208 pp., $24.95.. J. Amer. Acad. Psychoanal., 32:720-722.|
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(2004). Journal of American Academy of Psychoanalysis, 32(4):720-722
Freeing the Human Spirit: A Psychiatrist's Journal, by Louis B. Fierman, Blue Dolphin Publishing, Nevada City, CA, 208 pp., $24.95.
Joseph P. Merlino, M.D., M.P.A. and César A. Alfonso, M.D.
In our present climate, the belief in the value of needs to be encouraged. Fierman does just that. He transmits a spirit of confidence in our therapeutic activity by telling the stories of 21cases. This spirit was kindled by his contact with Hellmuth Kaiser, and is best conveyed in his own words: “Hellmuth Kaiser taught me that psychotherapists need not regard their work as work but rather, in a sense, as play, an enjoyable encounter with a fellow human . This is not to ignore … the therapist's full responsibility for the conduct or outcome of , but rather to emphasize the quality of , openness and sharing, that characterizes the communicativeintimacy offered by the therapist to the patient in effective ” (p. ix). The stories in the book exemplify “the joy and drama” of doing therapy.
Kaiser, originally trained in , broke with the psychoanalytic establishment to develop his own mode of nondirective, interactive, here-and-now focused . Kaiser re-conceptualized the core psychotherapeutic task by replacing the concept of and the concept of making-the---through- with a far more generalized notion that the basic in psychological disorders is duplicity in . In therapy this duplicity is not directly challenged, it yields, however, to the direct, genuine, and spontaneous responses of the therapist
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