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Eckardt, M.H. (2015). Traumatic Ruptures: Abandonment and Betrayal in the Analytic Relationship, edited by Robin A. Deutsch, Routledge, New York, 2014, 220 pp., $44.95.. Psychodyn. Psych., 43(3):493-495.

(2015). Psychodynamic Psychiatry, 43(3):493-495

Book Reviews

Traumatic Ruptures: Abandonment and Betrayal in the Analytic Relationship, edited by Robin A. Deutsch, Routledge, New York, 2014, 220 pp., $44.95.

Review by:
Marianne H. Eckardt, M.D.

This book is about the effects of sudden traumatic ruptures within the psycho-analytic world in which we live. It is an intimate exploration of psychoanalytic treatments and communities where betrayal and abandonment have left their marks. The book is divided into four parts. Part one is titled: “Ruptured Subjectivity” and presents the papers: “Psychoanalytic Process in the Shadow of Rupture: Clinical Encounter with Death, Dead Mothers, and Deadly Mothers,” and “A Voice Lost, a Voice Found: After the Death of the Analyst.” Part two deals with “Rupture: The Clinical Process” with the following papers: “Abandonment Without Warning: Resonance of the Shame of Early Loss When an Analyst Dies,” “The Trauma of Patient Suicide,” and “On Being the Second Analyst: Two Patients Who Suffered Unexpected Loss of Their First Analyst and the Issue of Countertransference.” Part three, called “The Long Shadow of Rupture,” focuses on the loss by an analysand of an analyst due to ethical violation. Part four describes the various impacts of ruptures on organizations due to ethical violation.

The collection of chapters explores what happens when creativity and destructiveness tilt and the analysis itself becomes the conveyer of the unbearable. For each author a traumatic event has occurred in the analysis affecting the patient, the analyst, and the community or subsequent treatment. What once was is no more, destroying the necessary sense of sanctuary and goodness. In this book the author offers the reader a first-hand experience of issues that have been off-limits and yet need to be articulated. A loss is not only a loss of the other, but also of the sense of self. Re-establishing connections becomes a vital process. For each author, writing is one medium involving the community in the process of repair.

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