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Meadows, P. (1968). The Cure of Souls and the Winds of Change. Psychoanal. Rev., 55(3):491-504.
  

(1968). Psychoanalytic Review, 55(3):491-504

The Cure of Souls and the Winds of Change

Paul Meadows

I. Time and “Cura Animarum”

I should like to set this discussion of psychotherapy—by whatever name it may be called—in the contexts of other times and other cultures as well as of our own. For the cura animarum—the “care” of and the “caring for” the salus and the well-being of the human psyche—not only has long preceded the present vogue of depth psychologies and clinical research methodologies but has occurred in social contexts bearing no resemblance, on the surface at least, to the doctor's office, the clinic or the hospital. This fact has many dimensions of significance. The winds of change have brought from many sources, seldom medical in the modern sense at least, great transformations in the cure of souls within a given society just as they have brought novel themes and techniques, rites and procedures, psychologies and ideologies into our own culture from many societies, some of them far away and long ago. Our own culture is indeed a case in point: we are the inheritors and legatees of immemorial traditions and methods so unexamined by us but so integral to our conceptions of therapy that they form, as it were, a kind of philosophical and institutional unconscious for therapists, of all sorts and degrees, today.

The

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