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Tidd, C.W. (1960). The Use of Psycho-Analytic Concepts in Medical Education. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 41:559-564.

(1960). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 41:559-564

The Use of Psycho-Analytic Concepts in Medical Education

Charles W. Tidd

The use of psycho-analytic information in non-analytic fields has increased immensely within the past twenty years. Practically every area involving the study of human behaviour has availed itself of knowledge from this source. The degree to which this has occurred varies, but it has been especially noticeable in the field of medicine. Since psychiatry is the branch of medicine which deals principally with problems of mental and emotional disorder, it is understandable that psychiatry should have been most influenced by psycho-analysis.

We are all familiar with the fact that it was in the field of medicine that psycho-analysis met with particular opposition at the time of its inception. That there continues to be opposition is also true, but there is convincing evidence that it is much less now than formerly.

Freud, in a paper written in 1918 (1), discussed the teaching of psycho-analysis in universities. He pointed out that the psycho-analyst could function outside the university but that psycho-analysis had much to offer the university student, particularly the medical student with reference to 'the most absorbing problems of human life'. He commented on the function of psycho-analysis as a preparation for the study of psychiatry, and mentioned that in America at that time psycho-analysis was being taught in some medical schools. He concluded with some remarks about the limitations of teaching psycho-analysis in the medical school, emphasizing that the student would not learn 'psycho-analysis proper', but expressing the view that '… it will be enough if he learns something about psycho-analysis and something from it.

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