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Biernoff, J. (1960). Science and Psychoanalysis, Volume II. Individual and Familial Dynamics: Edited by Jules H. Masserman, M.D. New York: Grune & Stratton, Inc., 1959. 218 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 29:402-404.

(1960). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 29:402-404

Science and Psychoanalysis, Volume II. Individual and Familial Dynamics: Edited by Jules H. Masserman, M.D. New York: Grune & Stratton, Inc., 1959. 218 pp.

Review by:
Joseph Biernoff

This book comprises the papers and discussions presented before the Academy of Psychoanalysis for the two meetings of December 1957 and May 1958. The former investigated the problem of masochism and the latter reviewed the recent studies of the familial, social, and cultural settings of individual behavior.

Salzman reviews the theory and therapy of masochism. He departs from the classical freudian concept which roots it in an instinctual drive. He prefers the more recent view where it is described as a means for obtaining love in which pain and discomfort appear as unavoidable obstacles.

Kelman presents the views of the school of Karen Horney. The concept of masochism is denied altogether and the observed clinical phenomena are described in terms of pride, self-hate, alienation, and the defense of self-extinction and self-effacement.

Clara Thompson agrees with Salzman that masochism is the ego's payment for love. However, she emphasizes the role of aggression. She ascribes the genesis of the disorder to parents without affection in whom the child can feel neither trust nor security. She advocates some catering to the patient's need for love and recognition before making interpretations, but insists on the predominant role of interpretation and insight in therapeutic success.

May Romm supports both the classical view of masochism as rooted in an instinctual aim and the more modern one that it is the ego's defensive attempt to insure future pleasure by enduring present pain.

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