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Fleck, S. (1986). The Psychotic Process: By John Frosch, M.D. New York: International Universities Press, Inc., 1983. 521 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 55:341-346.
(1986). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 55:341-346
The Psychotic Process: By John Frosch, M.D. New York: International Universities Press, Inc., 1983. 521 pp.
Review by: Stephen Fleck
This volume was highly praised by esteemed colleagues in prepublication reviews, but it leaves this reviewer somewhat disappointed. The title is troublesome, in that the book is not devoted to psychosis
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per se but to psychoanalytic views and concepts regarding psychosis. The extensive use of essentially historical formulations and data becomes tedious for the reader. Rare is the chapter that does not begin with some reference to what Sigmund Freud had to say about psychosis and its symptomatic expressions. While this is testimony to Freud's clinical sagacity, it is also unfortunate, since the best passages in the book are those in which Frosch critically addresses the work of other writers or discusses his own extensive and intensive experience with the treatment of psychotics. Indeed, there is all too little of the latter. It is obvious that in his actual work the author does not adhere exclusively either to psychoanalytic techniques or to psychoanalytic formulations in dealing with patients, yet he seems to find it irresistible to restate all interpersonal therapeutic experiences and events in traditional psychoanalytic terms. Thus, although Frosch does not hesitate to state his own positions and his views, he takes the reader through dozens and dozens of pages of what Freud, Hartmann, Arlow and Brenner, and many others have said before arriving at what Frosch himself believes or thinks, which he usually expresses in relatively few brief sentences.
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