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Doidge, N. (1999). How to Preserve Psychoanalysis: Introduction to Gunderson and Gabbard. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 47(3):673-676.

(1999). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 47(3):673-676

How to Preserve Psychoanalysis: Introduction to Gunderson and Gabbard Related Papers

Norman Doidge

Psychoanalysis was not invented by a psychoanalyst, though Freud became one. Nor was it, for the most part, spread by the testimonials of those who underwent individual analyses. Rather, it was Freud's powerful literary gift that spread psychoanalysis. The very successes wrought by his eloquence created an environment that permitted most analysts to forget that in fact it was nonanalytic measures that made analysis possible, and made it grow.

In the target paper to follow, John Gunderson and Glen Gabbard argue that specific nonanalytic activities, particularly increased empirical scientific work, are required to protect and nourish psychoanalytic practice.

Yet there is a paradox that anyone who would argue that analysts must devote resources to nonanalytic activities must face. We analysts are often reluctant to conclude that “nonanalytic” measures might be required to communicate the effectiveness of analysis, though we are quick to apply that adjective to the current threats to our profession.

We all know the trends that typically are held accountable for recent attacks on psychoanalysis. A warp-speed zeitgeist that, thanks to technology, has fostered an impatience and a naive longing for quick fixes and therapies is one. Another, in the United States, is a freakish economic arrangement—a tax regulation that ties health insurance to one's job and thus interposes third-party payers between clinicians and patients. Consumer choice, the essence of the “free” market, is bypassed and the therapeutic relationship interfered with. But perhaps the most important trend is a change that has given rise to what one might call “the pancake soul.”

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

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