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Ruderman, E.G. Shane, E. (2002). Prologue. Psychoanal. Inq., 22(4):493-494.

(2002). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 22(4):493-494

Prologue

Ellen G. Ruderman, Ph.D. and Estelle Shane, Ph.D.

You will Find that the Papers in this Issue are Diverse, Written by different analysts with different frames of reference at different times in their life cycle and in different states of mind. What they have in common, however, is their focus on the analyst's separations, losses, or developmental progressions, or traumas, and how these experiences influence and change the analytic work they do.

This focus on life stages of the analyst and concomitant changes in the analyst's work was first broached in the dissertation of one of the editors (Ruderman, 1983). Influenced by the importance of this topic, Ruderman went on to form, coordinate, and contribute to a panel at the year 2000 National Membership Committee on Psychoanalysis in Clinical Social Work National Conference in New York City, entitled The Life Stage of the Psychoanalyst: Discoveries, Epiphanies, and Implications for Analytic Treatment. The focus of this panel was on the analyst's countertransference and subjectivity in regard to changing reflections, attitudes, and self-discovery as he or she journeys through a particular life stage or life event, and the impact of these experiences on psychoanalytic treatment. The work was so enthusiastically received by the clinical audience that Ruderman enlisted Shane to develop an issue of Psychoanalytic Inquiry whose theme would evoke this same degree of interest and discussion as had the panel presentations.

This, then, is the origin of this issue, devoted to the idea that our directions in life often shift and change as external events and internal modifications bring new perspectives, insights, and approaches to the analytic treatment milieu. In this issue ten prominent and seasoned analysts reflect upon their own life changes, changes brought about by a variety of circumstances. They have been deliberately selected not only because they have had much to contribute to our clinical field in the past, but also because what they have to say concerns circumstances more or less familiar to all of us.

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