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Rose, S. (1961). Discussions. Am. J. Psychoanal., 21(2):278-279.

(1961). American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 21(2):278-279


Sidney Rose, M.D.

My special interest is group psychoanalysis. Dr. Benjamin Becker has described in a broad and general way some interesting aspects of alienation in the group setting. Dr. Louis DeRosis reports on other aspects, but also importunes the existence of a “real self” prior to the onset of various alienating processes. This is difficult for me to imagine. What appeals most to me is Prof. Maslow's description of the peak experience which is more likely to occur in the self-actualizing or non-alienated individual, and how the group fosters growth toward self-actualization and a lessening of alienation.

The analytical therapy group is unified by a set of implicit values. These are distinct and different from the neurotic defenses and values which only serve to fragment the group. There is an encouragement in the group toward spontaneity, toward “Speak before you think” interaction which brings friction and conflict and exposure of the neurotic facets of each one. In the resolution of neurotic interactions new resources are tapped in each individual. The self-actualizing person who experiences the world in a “B” way has an abundance of such resources, but the alienated individual has to develop them.

The alienated person is blocked from experiencing his own “humanness” which he has in common with all others. He is out of touch with his own inner humanity because he is tied to a system of values which accentuate differences and emphasize superiorities.

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