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Gillman, R.D. (1999). Adolescent Breakdown and Beyond: Moses Laufer. Madison, CT: International Universities Press, 1998. 156 pp., $27.50.. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 47(1):256.

(1999). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 47(1):256

Adolescent Breakdown and Beyond: Moses Laufer. Madison, CT: International Universities Press, 1998. 156 pp., $27.50.

Review by:
Robert D. Gillman

Moses Laufer and the other contributors to this volume define adolescent breakdown as a developmental breakdown, a cessation in forward development, when long-standing fantasies and unresolved conflicts, now faced with the sudden influx in puberty of sexual maturity and aggressive energy, can no longer be integrated into the adolescent's previously successful compromises. The result is severe pathology: suicidal, bulimic, and aggressive adolescents. There are chapters on normal and pathological development, and on indications for psychotherapy and psychoanalysis, all with illustrative case material.

The book is well written, clear, easy to read, and not too abstract. It should be of great use to beginning mental health professionals, and to educators and others who work with adolescents to help them recognize the signs of breakdown and to become aware of the kinds of facilities (like the Brent Centre in London, where most of the book's contributors work) available for psychodynamic intervention.

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