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Tip: To see Abram’s analysis of Winnicott’s theories…

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In-depth analysis of Winnicott’s psychoanalytic theorization was conducted by Jan Abrams in her work The Language of Winnicott. You can access it directly by clicking here.

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Chazan, S. (2013). Pride and joy. by Kenneth Barish: (2012). Oxford: Oxford University Press. $17.95 (Paperback); 280 pages; ISBN: 978-01 9989 6240. J. Infant Child Adolesc. Psychother., 12(3):244-245.

(2013). Journal of Infant, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy, 12(3):244-245

Book Review

Pride and joy. by Kenneth Barish: (2012). Oxford: Oxford University Press. $17.95 (Paperback); 280 pages; ISBN: 978-01 9989 6240

Saralea Chazan

As described by the author, this book is a guide for parents to understanding their child's emotions and for solving family problems. It is a mission achieved in a slender book, the few pages conveying his objectives in a clear concise manner. An earlier volume, Emotions in Child Psychotherapy: An Integrative Framework (2009), intended for mental health practitioners, laid the groundwork for Pride and Joy, intended primarily for parents. As in the previous volume, theoretical concepts are enunciated clearly and followed by practical applications.

The first of two sections introduces the reader to Basic Principles: Nurturing Your Child's Emotional Health. The approach is a positive one, embracing parents in reassuring concepts that are readily understandable and optimistic. The major points are highlighted in encapsulated boxes that are readable at a glance and remind the reader of the important points available in the text. The editing is superb and the author's message jumps from the page with great clarity. I imagined myself being an upset, anxious parent fumbling to find just the right words to soothe me with enlightening understandings. The reader is not disappointed. The author's positive approach to parents is presented in a friendly, knowledgeable manner, if somewhat didactic sounding at times. We learn to read the emotions of childhood as vital nonverbal communications, a language we are familiar with but often forget in the heat of the moment. The author does not address our parental feelings of uncertainty in a direct voice; however, he clearly knows us in our disarray and reacquaints us with the importance of recognizing not only actions but also the context of feelings. He reminds us of the value of support and the need for optimism; we begin to relax as he describes how things repair and come back together again, without the impending danger of endless disarray.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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