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Forrester, J. (2012). Editorial. Psychoanal. Hist., 14(1):1-4.

(2012). Psychoanalysis and History, 14(1):1-4


John Forrester

The creation of psychoanalysis between the years 1885 and the end of World War II is the subject of George Makari's Revolution in Mind (2008). An important, fizzingly written and profoundly well-researched book which should be and undoubtedly soon will be familiar to all those interested in the history of psychoanalysis, it receives an extended series of reflections in this issue from Patricia Cotti. Makari ends his history in 1945, at the moment when the centres of gravity of psychoanalysis had shifted decisively to the United States and Great Britain. This special issue of Psychoanalysis and History is devoted to articles and documents which throw new light upon psychoanalysis in mid-twentieth century Britain.

During World War II, British psychoanalysis was in a strangely transitional state. The early 1920s fashion for psychoanalysis had faded just as the institutions soon to be characteristic of a psychoanalytic profession had been established - an Institute, a Clinic, a formally established system of training - but the early rapid growth of the British Society's members had levelled off in the late 1920s, partly as a result of the professionalizing turn psychoanalysis had taken. Indeed, a bunker mentality was established within the Society by its founder, Ernest Jones, and his right-hand man, Edward Glover, safeguarding the doctrinal purity and social respectability, particularly medical respectability, of Freudian psychoanalysis.

[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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