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Kerr, J. (2004). “The Goody-Goods Are No Good” Notes on Power and Authority in the Early History of Psychoanalysis, with Special Reference to Training. Psychoanal. Inq., 24(1):7-30.

(2004). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 24(1):7-30

“The Goody-Goods Are No Good” Notes on Power and Authority in the Early History of Psychoanalysis, with Special Reference to Training

John Kerr

In this historical essay, I identify themes in the patterns of power and authority within institutional psychoanalysis—themes that harken back almost a century, to the founding period, and that reflect the special nature, and ambiguities, of the analytic endeavor as physicians of that time experienced it. I then argue that a focus on self-analysis as a prerequisite for analytic competence at the time of creation of the International Psychoanalytic Association, as an exclusive self-constituted training and certifying organization, allowed certain crucial unsolved organizational questions to be eclipsed. The resulting ambiguities then passed wholesale into the subsequent creation of training institutes and, I argue, continue to tacitly inform current debates on the training analysis.

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