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Kogan, I. (2003). Response to Commentaries. Psychoanal Q., 72(3):797-803.

(2003). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 72(3):797-803

Response to Commentaries Related Papers

Ilany Kogan

I was delighted to have my thoughts reviewed by such an eminent group of colleagues; their remarks significantly expanded and augmented my thinking. I admire the wealth of theoretical and clinical ideas that they advanced in their review of my case study. In addition, I found that the reviews provided an extremely productive array of different orientations to some important issues in psychoanalytic theory and practice. I would like to speak to these issues, highlighting my own approach to them:

(1)  What weight should be given to historical reality in the treatment of offspring of Holocaust survivors?

(2)  What is the meaning of maintaining an “analytic” attitude in dealing with these patients?

(3)  Is it possible to relate to the Holocaust as a metaphor to the narrative scenery of analysis and not as the historical atrocity that it was?

Historical Reality in the Treatment of Offspring of Holocaust Survivors

For many years, the historical reality of the Holocaust was completely ignored or denied by psychoanalysts, who did not acknowledge the impact of the traumatic history of the parents on the lives of their offspring. Only several decades after the end of World War II did investigators begin to acknowledge the inevitability of transmitting pathology from survivors to their children (Sigal 1971, 1973; Rakoff 1966, 1969; Trossman 1968; Kestenberg 1972a, 1972b).

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