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Gordon, J. (2012). Rosemary Gordon-Montagnon (1918-2012). J. Anal. Psychol., 57(3):405-406.
(2012). Journal of Analytical Psychology, 57(3):405-406
Rosemary Gordon-Montagnon (1918-2012)
Rosemary Gordon who died on 17th January 2012, was a former Editor of this Journal and a Training Analyst and former Chairperson of the Society of Analytical Psychology. She was also a Fellow of the Royal AnthropologySociety and the British Psychological Society.
She was well known and widely appreciated as the author of numerous articles and books and as a lecturer, teacher and supervisor. She made an important contribution to the development of analytical psychology in England by making bridges between Jungian ideas and concepts and those of contemporary psychoanalysis, particularly Klein and Winnicott.
Rosemary's background laid the foundations for her lifelong interest and work in making links between different cultures and disciplines and between psychoanalysis and analytical psychology. Born in Germany in 1918, Rosemary went to school in Switzerland where she acquired her fluent French. During the 1930s, she moved to England together with her brother (who was killed in action in World War II), following her mother's marriage to her stepfather, James Gordon.
After gaining her degree in psychology and later her PhD from the University of London, she spent some time at the Sorbonne, undertaking research with Professor Lagache on family constellations. She became Senior Clinical Psychologist at Napsbury hospital in the 1950s where she had a special interest in projective testing.
It was during the latter time that she began a three year Kleinian analysis with Hanna Segal. However, she eventually chose a Jungian analysis and trained with the SAP, becoming a member in 1957. She said her choice was determined by the fact that she had interests ranging from the meaning of life and death, religion and anthropology to literature and the arts and she did not want any of these to be ‘reduced to mere categories such as instincts and drives’. She added that the choice between the Jungian and Freudian schools would have been more difficult for her today because of the overlap that has developed between the two since the 1950s.
This experience of two different analyses nourished and informed her clinical work and thinking.
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