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Richter, H. (1996). Psychoanalysis and Politics. Int. Forum Psychoanal., 5(4):295-300.

(1996). International Forum of Psychoanalysis, 5(4):295-300

Psychoanalysis and Politics

Horst-Eberhard Richter, M.D., phil., Prof., Dr.

Following the trauma of Nazi persecution, mainstream psychoanalysis abandoned its concern for the unconscious elements in social and political processes. The self-restriction was given a theoretical justification by H. Hartmann in his psychology of the self. The present author here sketches the periphery movement of an alternative “political psychoanalysis” with reference to M. Langer, A. Mitscherlich, P. Parin and his own work. His thesis is that if psychoanalysts do not consider their own entanglement in the social structures and conflicts that characterize their own time, they are in danger of themselves becoming, within their institutes, unconscious victims of irrational social influences, and in addition miss the opportunity to enlighten society by critical involvement.

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