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Teising, M. (2015). Letter from Berlin: The International Psychoanalytic University. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 63(2):301-310.

(2015). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 63(2):301-310

Letter from Berlin: The International Psychoanalytic University

Martin Teising

If—which may sound fantastic to-day—one had to found a college of psycho-analysis …

—Sigmund Freud (1926)

Over the last few decades, a nomothetic understanding of science, one less concerned with an understanding of the individual, has prevailed. Such a perspective seeks universal laws through the application of empirical research and frequently reductionist methods, primarily taking quantitative data as its basis. Unfortunately, to a large extent this situation has become true for psychology as well.

In accord with this shift, an enormous amount of capital from the private sector has been invested in health and education, sectors that in Germany in the past had been broadly supported by the public purse (indeed, more than “broadly supported”; nearly 90 percent of the work in the health system was done by public agencies). As these two processes advance, psychoanalysis has been almost completely removed from German universities.

In terms of psychotherapeutic care provided under the statutory health insurance system, proportionally speaking, an ever increasing amount of behavioral therapy is being conducted. A steadily increasing number of therapists are receiving their training and qualifications from behavioral therapy institutions, often with a link to or on a par with universities.

Today's students are less concerned with self-discovery and developing their personalities than was once the case.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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