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Klein, E. (1949). Searchlights on Delinquency. New Psychoanalytic Studies: Kurt Eissler, Managing Editor. Paul Federn, Chairman of the Editorial Board. New York: International Universities Press, 1949. 456 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 18:511-515.

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(1949). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 18:511-515

Searchlights on Delinquency. New Psychoanalytic Studies: Kurt Eissler, Managing Editor. Paul Federn, Chairman of the Editorial Board. New York: International Universities Press, 1949. 456 pp.

Review by:
Emanuel Klein

This volume was dedicated to August Aichhorn on the occasion of his seventieth birthday, July 27, 1948. It re-emphasizes how profound is the debt that every worker in this field owes to him. Recently Aichhorn has been appointed a professor and is getting the aid of the Austrian Government in founding a new institute for the study and treatment of delinquents. He reorganized the Viennese Psychoanalytic Society and became its second president. In this connection the words of Paul Federn, who was Aichhorn's analyst, are timely: 'There is a symbolic as well as a practical significance to the fact that Aichhorn is the second President of the Viennese group. He is no physician. His profession was originally that of a teacher in the elementary schools … his experiences induced him to join the psychoanalytic group. At that time he underwent his own training analysis with the writer of these lines. Had there then been those professional restrictions which have now been established in most countries, and which would have forced us to refuse to accept him as pupil and later as member of the psychoanalytic society, we all, including Freud himself, would have been deprived of him as our teacher… Therefore this volume will also serve to remind whomever it may concern of Freud's statement that he would always oppose the pretension of medicine to monopolize psychoanalysis.'

The book contains thirty-seven articles, a preface by Ernest Jones, a warm dedication by Federn, and a brief but very informative biographical sketch by Kurt R. Eissler. The volume as a whole is suffused with Dr. Aichhorn's spirit, and is a fine tribute to him.

The first article, Some Problems of Delinquency, by Eissler, is a broad, somewhat philosophical discussion of the subject. It calls attention to the important field of condoned delinquency, an area that needs a great deal of exploration. Pfister's Therapy and Ethics in August Aichhorn's Treatment of Wayward Youth tries to show a close parallel between the four gospels and the work of Freud and Aichhorn. It suffers from the writer's attempt to make


1 Since this review was written, August Aichhorn died. (Ed.)

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