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Rudden, M.G. (2016). A Psychoanalytic Odyssey: Painted Guinea Pigs, Dreams, and other Realities by Eugene J. Mahon Karnac Books, London, 2014; 223 pp; $40.95. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 97(4):1178-1184.

(2016). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 97(4):1178-1184

A Psychoanalytic Odyssey: Painted Guinea Pigs, Dreams, and other Realities by Eugene J. Mahon Karnac Books, London, 2014; 223 pp; $40.95

Review by:
Marie G. Rudden, M.D.

This book is in many ways a masterpiece of clinical writing: beautifully and clearly presented, it offers a coherent viewpoint drawn from vivid clinical vignettes of adults and children engaged in psychoanalysis. The author links various clinical phenomena (mourning in children, repression, insight, transference, play, dreamwork, screen memories, symptoms and character) as he attempts to counter a tendency that he sees within the modern literature to ignore the centrality of insight, interpretation and working through. Mahon sets his task as that of looking at these topics with “renewed excitement” (p. xvii), and indeed, he brings these issues alive in ways that will intrigue even the most experienced analyst. His writing is so strong, his ideas presented with so little jargon, that the book could also be used as an introduction for new analysts to the field.

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[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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