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Silverman, M.A. (2013). Technique in Child and Adolescent Analysis. Edited by Michael Günter; translated by Harriett Hasenclever. London: Karnac, 2011. 134 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 82(2):528-535.

(2013). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 82(2):528-535

Technique in Child and Adolescent Analysis. Edited by Michael Günter; translated by Harriett Hasenclever. London: Karnac, 2011. 134 pp.

Review by:
Martin A. Silverman

Some psychoanalytic efforts are laudable. Some are valiant. Others are heroic in scope. The treatments described within the pages of this slim volume are all of these and more. The book describes the work of a number of outstanding European (mainly German and one Italian, as

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well as one British) child analysts as presented at a 2008 conference. This conference addressed the treatment of severely traumatized, constitutionally and environmentally burdened, very troubled young people on whose behalf they had poured out their energy, their effort, and their souls in order to help them.

Michael Günter, in the first chapter, quotes 1919 Freud as saying that:

The various forms of disease treated by us cannot all be dealt with by the same technique … [although] its most effective and important ingredients will assuredly remain those borrowed from strict and un-tendentious psycho-analysis. [p. 4]

He goes on to quote Ella Freeman Sharpe's observation that “a correct technique is not a rigid yardstick but adapts itself to the particular needs of the individual” (p. 4).

He calls attention to Sándor Ferenczi's admonition to psychoanalysts that they need to avoid adhering to “generic” (p. 6) principles and techniques, and he cites his assertion that “our trust in our theories should also only be conditional, for this might be the famous exception to the rule or there might even be a need to correct the theory as it stands so far”

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