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Lester, E.P. (1989). A History of Psychoanalysis in Canada: By Alan Parkin, M.D. Toronto: The Toronto Psychoanalytic Society, 1987. 129 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 58:491-494.

(1989). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 58:491-494

A History of Psychoanalysis in Canada: By Alan Parkin, M.D. Toronto: The Toronto Psychoanalytic Society, 1987. 129 pp.

Review by:
Eva P. Lester

Alan Parkin is well qualified to write about the historical development of psychoanalytic thought and organized psychoanalysis in Canada. A Torontonian, Parkin did his psychoanalytic training in London and returned to Canada in time to participate in and influence the early years of these developments. This is not the history of the Canadian Psychoanalytic Society per se but a historical account of the evolution of the movement in the country and the portrayal of the people central to this long evolution. Some Canadian readers of Parkin's manuscript have pointed out that it is history as observed from Toronto. I believe this comment applies only in the sense that the very early course of the movement, which took place in Toronto, is possibly given a disproportionally large space in this slim volume. It may be argued, however, that the record of these early events is of great value to the understanding of the national scene and will therefore be indispensable to subsequent historians of psychoanalysis.

In 1894, a full fifteen years before the arrival of Ernest Jones in Toronto in 1909, Donald Campbell Meyers, a Toronto neurologist who had studied with Charcot in Europe, established a private neurological hospital in the heart of the city. A brochure (dated 1908) "makes the historic statement," Parkin writes, "that the hospital applied 'psychoanalytical and clinical methods of examination, observation and treatment' under the personal care of Meyers" (p. 4).

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