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Kalman, T.P. (2012). Psychoanalytic Technique Expanded: A Textbook on Psychoanalytic Treatment, by Vamik D. Volkan. OA Publishing, Istanbul and London, 2010, 303 pp.. Psychodyn. Psych., 40(2):366-370.

(2012). Psychodynamic Psychiatry, 40(2):366-370

Psychoanalytic Technique Expanded: A Textbook on Psychoanalytic Treatment, by Vamik D. Volkan. OA Publishing, Istanbul and London, 2010, 303 pp.

Review by:
Thomas P. Kalman, M.S., M.D.

A personal recollection: Many years ago, before psychiatric training, long before Prozac, before struggling to understand Kernberg and Kohut, and before cognitive psychology, I would scan issues of The Psychoanalytic Quarterly and devour their plentiful case descriptions, many by Peter Giovacchini and L. Bryce Boyer. These papers, rich accounts of long, intensive treatments with plenty of attention paid to the dynamics, process, transference, and countertransference (and generally free of metapsychological expostulations) impelled me toward my chosen profession. But then the world changed, psychoanalysis and intensive dynamic psychotherapy fell out of favor, and my cherished, so human, jargon-free descriptions of treatment relationships largely disappeared from the literature. Vamik Volkan brings them back.

Dr. Volkan, for those who may be unfamiliar with him, is undoubtedly among the internationally best-known living psychiatrists and psychoanalysts. Indeed, I would be hard-pressed to name another who has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, a recognition which Dr. Volkan achieved annually from 2005-2008 for his decades of work in examining conflicts among opposing large groups, working in international trouble spots, and expanding psychopolitical theories. When not working on a world stage, Dr. Volkan is an experienced psychoanalytic clinician, teacher, supervisor, writer and editor. He has amassed countless honors from many countries, agencies, governments, and universities in recognition of his myriad contributions. But, perhaps best of all, he writes beautifully, in lucid, compelling prose, about the richest of psychoanalytic experiences, promises, disappointments, and complexities.

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