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Grinker, R.R., Sr (1994). Training of a Psychiatrist-Psychoanalyst. J. Amer. Acad. Psychoanal., 22(2):343-350.

(1994). Journal of American Academy of Psychoanalysis, 22(2):343-350

Training of a Psychiatrist-Psychoanalyst

Roy R. Grinker, Sr, M.D.

This is a day for congratulations to the faculty of the Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute, its Director, and the students who have obtained the benefits of a liberal, scholarly education at this Institute. All of them should have great satisfaction and pride at what has been accomplished in the past. They may likewise be permitted a legitimate hope that future achievements in research and training of this Institute will be even greater.

I am personally particularly happy to participate in this celebration today since I was present at the founding of this Institute. Well, I can hardly say present and perhaps I was not exactly at the founding. It was at the University of Chicago where Dr. Alexander was placed in the rather unfortunate position of giving a seminar concerned with the relationship of psychoanalysis and medicine to members of the Department of Medicine and various invited, but essentially hostile guests. On one particular day Alexander recounted a case history illustrating the dynamics of constipation. At that time, and perhaps even yet, he contended that constipation was based on a syllogism, “inasmuch as I do not receive, therefore, I do not have to give.” He told the story of a young lady who had developed constipation shortly after her marriage to a man who paid very little attention to her. In his management of this case Alexander spoke to the husband and pointed out that her constipation was a reaction to his lack of attention. Whereupon the guilty husband immediately became solicitous, purchased a few red roses and gave them to his wife. Immediately after she received the first gift since their marriage her constipation miraculously disappeared. This was too much for the Department of Medicine and marked the beginning of Alexander's end at the University of Chicago! The result was everyone else's gain because eventually the Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute developed from Alexander's desire to establish psychoanalytic training and investigation on a level equivalent to the standard of university departments.

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