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Tip: To see Abram’s analysis of Winnicott’s theories…

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In-depth analysis of Winnicott’s psychoanalytic theorization was conducted by Jan Abrams in her work The Language of Winnicott. You can access it directly by clicking here.

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Pulver, S.E. (1993). The Eclectic Analyst, or the Many Roads to Insight and Change. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 41:339-357.

(1993). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 41:339-357

The Eclectic Analyst, or the Many Roads to Insight and Change

Sydney E. Pulver, M.D.

ABSTRACT

Common wisdom has it that psychoanalysis is composed of a number of discrete bodies of theoretical and technical thought, or "schools." I argue that psychoanalytic schools are not as different from one another as they are commonly supposed to be, particularly in matters of technique. In their daily practice, most analysts do not adhere strictly to the precepts of a specific school, even though they profess to be adherents of that school. Instead, they read widely and adopt those technical procedures and principles that fit their own personality and prove most efficacious with their patients, regardless of the school from which those ideas come. In short, they are eclectic. I present a case to illustrate this eclecticism in my own practice, discuss the widespread nature of such eclecticism among the professions in general, and briefly discuss the significance of eclecticism for psychoanalysis itself.

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