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Margolis, M. (1994). Discussion of “Psychoanalysis Enters Its Second Century” by Robert Michels. Ann. Psychoanal., 22:47-51.

(1994). Annual of Psychoanalysis, 22:47-51

Discussion of “Psychoanalysis Enters Its Second Century” by Robert Michels

Marvin Margolis

I am appreciative of the thoughtful alternatives that Dr. Michels has posed for us today, and basically agree with his prescient predictions of our future. I would like to elaborate on some of his thoughts as well as emphasize some additional possible routes that we may travel. My discussion will focus on institutional changes at both national and local levels. First, let me begin by noting that the American Psychoanalytic Association is in a state of institutional flux. The outlines of our future are discernible in the many changes that we are now embarked upon. The recent passage of the By-Law amendments that grant local autonomy to institutes to admit doctoral level nonmedical, candidates as well as the delinkage of certification from membership, has already led to major alterations in our Association. We have become a far more open and democratic organization that is now moving rapidly toward even more fundamental changes in our psychoanalytic, institutional world. Strategic planning committees are generating a variety of proposals focused on institutional renewal. These forthcoming changes will be thoughtful and democratically arrived at and will not require decades to accomplish.

The alienation of so many of our faculty and candidates toward both their local and national organizations is diminishing as we move toward a more inclusive democratic organization. Our increasing openness to theoretical and technical innovation has already invigorated our science and clinical work. Our outreach efforts to the mental health professional, academic, and general community, while in their nascent stages, have likewise begun to alter our image to that of a more open, scientific, and welcoming community of clinicians and scholars.

Now, to some particular issues raised by Dr. Michels.

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