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Semi, A.A. (1990). Eugenio Gaddini. Scritti 1953-1985. Edited by M.L. Mascagni, A. Gaddini, R. De Benedetti Gaddini. Cortina, Milano, 1989, XXIII - 886 pages, Liras 120.000.. Rivista Psicoanal., 36(2):460-470.

(1990). Rivista di Psicoanalisi, 36(2):460-470

Book Reviews

Eugenio Gaddini. Scritti 1953-1985. Edited by M.L. Mascagni, A. Gaddini, R. De Benedetti Gaddini. Cortina, Milano, 1989, XXIII - 886 pages, Liras 120.000. Language Translation

Review by:
Antonio Alberto Semi

The task of the reviewer is in some cases extremely difficult, and this naturally is one of those cases. This thick volume of the “Biblioteca di Psicoanalisi”, issued with customary meticulousness by Raffaello Cortina, has gathered all the published and unpublished writings of Eugenio Gaddini. It covers the entire scientific production of a teacher and colleague towards whom we all felt esteem and affection, an enquiring and original psychoanalyst who was as cautious in seeking theoretic conclusions as he was tenacious in their defence once completed; a profound connaisseur of psychoanalytic literature and, moreover, a man of vast learning.

Within the confines of a review, to underline fragmentary passages, to highlight papers for “re-reading” and to comment upon Gaddini's theoretic thought, seem unthinkable to me. What I would prefer to do is to outline a reading focus that the availability of all the writings within a single volume now enables. This, after a brief illustration of the book's organization, shall therefore be my appointed, albeit tentative, task.

The book opens with a prefatory outline of editorial criteria: the texts are arranged in chronological order and bear only minimal alteration from their original form. Quite rightly, however, the editors have provided notes on the principal variations that some painfully drafted texts have undergone before reaching the definitive version. They have also added a series of notes that enable the reader to identify “the route along which Gaddini elaborated some of his principal theoretic concepts” (XII).

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