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Selz, M. (2016). Vues nouvelles sur le psychodrame psychanalytique edited by Isaac Salem EDK, Paris, 2013; 148; £18. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 97(1):229-235.

(2016). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 97(1):229-235

Vues nouvelles sur le psychodrame psychanalytique edited by Isaac Salem EDK, Paris, 2013; 148; £18

Review by:
Monique Selz

The publication of this book is truly welcome news insofar as it takes up the threads of a previous work, now long out of print (Amar et al., 1988) and bears testament to 30 years of experience, both in the field of training as well as in treatment.

In his brief foreword, R. Perron sets the stage of recent advancements in psychodrama. From the outset, two aspects of this therapeutic device stand out, which differentiate it from cure-type, or classical psychoanalytic, treatment. Firstly, the number of participants, ranging from one to several patients, but always with multiple analysts, and secondly, the suggested method: play. If the word may be considered the working tool for analysts, this presupposes that the patient has sufficient at his or her disposal. This is often far from the case.

And so, he who cannot speak acts: it is upon this basic principle that psychodrama is founded. “Would you prefer to act it? Then let's act it …” but on condition that the acts are simulated to a certain degree in the mode of the children's game, “Let's pretend …”. By this method, one seeks to use what has been or what has not been, to a degree for real, but also to a degree implausibly so. It should hit home but in a tolerable way, with the aim of freeing up a multiplicity of meaning right where it all had once appeared positively monolithic. This staging [mise en scène] seeks to open up the perceptive space, mobilize the body and in so doing encourage the anchoring of body to word.

[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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