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Akhtar, S. (1999). Diversity and Direction in Psychoanalytic Technique: Fred Pine. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. 1998. Pp. 218. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 80(5):1025-1028.

(1999). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 80(5):1025-1028

Diversity and Direction in Psychoanalytic Technique: Fred Pine. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. 1998. Pp. 218

Review by:
Salman Akhtar

Fred Pine's book is an eloquent plea for the integration of diverse aspects of psychoanalytic theory and technique. It is handsomely produced and fascinatingly written. I will say more about Pine's writing style after addressing his book's content. This essentially centres upon the relevance of and need for heuristic and technical pluralism in psychoanalysis. Far from wishy-washy eclecticism and firmly rooted in a developmental perspective, Pine's book offers a carefully structured argument for such pluralism. He lays out the evidence bit by bit and at each step tackles potential counterpoints, allows caveats and permits the reader a glimpse of his own evolution as a theoretician and practising analyst. Pine regards psychoanalysis as an expanding field in which the theoretical and technical changes are additive and not substitutive. For him, ‘the psychoanalytic, the psychotherapeutic, and the developmental are closely blended’ (p. 3). He states:

I often think of my clinical work in terms of doing as much psychoanalysis as possible in context where I do as much psychotherapy as necessary—the latter being precisely what makes it possible to pursue the former. At other times, or with other patients, the psychotherapeutic portions seem a full partner of equal status and value in the enterprise. I do not quite think of these latter treatments as psychoanalysis, but I can not think of them as not psychoanalysis, since psychoanalysis inevitably enters into the work so significantly for an analyst (p.

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