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Aronson, S. (2020). Nurturing Children: by Graham Music, London, Routledge, 2019, 224 pp., $28.95, ISBN 978-1-138-34606-2. J. Infant Child Adolesc. Psychother., 19(3):335-337.
(2020). Journal of Infant, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy, 19(3):335-337
Nurturing Children: by Graham Music, London, Routledge, 2019, 224 pp., $28.95, ISBN 978-1-138-34606-2
Seth Aronson, Psy.D.
Psychoanalytic application to work with troubled children, especially those in the public sector who have experienced trauma, violence, and neglect, has a long history, initially drawing mostly from the work of Anna Freud. Anna Freud, more than Melanie Klein, paid careful attention to the actual events that affected children, establishing the Hampstead War Nurseries (Freud, 1973), working with child survivors of the Holocaust following World War Two (Freud & Dann, 1951) and of course, in later work with legal scholars (Goldstein et al., 1973).
Klein, because of her deep commitment to the understanding of the unconscious phantasies running throughout experience, paid less attention to the external world and events.
Early adherents to Anna Freud’s ideas, such as Redl (1951), Ekstein (1966), Wolfenstein (1969), and Scheidlinger (1965), to name but a few (and themselves immigrants), all applied Freudian ideas to their work with troubled children in the public sector.
But, gradually, over time, efforts broadened to reflect an integration of research from such fields as attachment and neuroscience to work with such children, applying research from these fields, together with psychoanalytic developmental principles, to the contemporary work child clinicians engage in today (see, for example, Bragin, 2019; Givon & Fachler, 2015; Haen, 2020; Perez & Sundheim, 2018, as well as the work done following 9/11; Beebe et al., 2011).
Such efforts are reflected in the work done by clinicians trained in many theoretical models – not only the Anna Freudian one – but those such as the Tavistock training model (see, for instance, Briggs, 2018; Special issue Journal of ChildPsychotherapy, 2017)
The Tavistock clinic, indeed, has a long history of work with those suffering from abuse, and neglect, through a development of a range of psychotherapeutic approaches based on psychoanalytic concepts, integrating these approaches to various populations.
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