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Murphy, W.F. (1952). Principles of Abnormal Psychology: The Dynamics of Psychic Illness. Psychoanal Q., 21:246.

(1952). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 21:246

Principles of Abnormal Psychology: The Dynamics of Psychic Illness

Review by:
William F. Murphy

By A. H. Maslow, Ph.D. and Bela Mittelmann, M.D. Revised Edition. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1951. 665 pp.

When Sears reviewed the first edition of this book in this QUARTERLY, XII, 1943, pp. 126–127, he stated that it was not a conventional textbook in abnormal psychology and could be considered a pace-setter for some time to come. The revised edition maintains this standard. For the psychiatrist and the psychologist, it is one of the most satisfactory textbooks. The sections on social and cultural aspects of the etiology of psychopathological reactions, on schizophrenia, psychosomatic syndromes, and the psychotherapy of adults have been extensively revised, and entirely new sections have been added on psychological disturbances in infants, children, adolescents, and old people, on war neuroses, somatic methods of treating mental disorders, and on guidance in occupational settings, industries, schools, and social work. The chapter on animal neurosis has been omitted, the relevant material being integrated into the text as a whole. This is a significant sign of the times highlighted by the fact that this book is the product of a psychoanalyst and a clinical psychologist. The new sections are well integrated with the old; well-chosen clinical studies are freely used, and the discussion remains anchored to the clinical material as well as oriented around it. This is an admirably effective, well-written textbook, pre-eminent since its inception in its field.

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