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Mitchell, S.A. (1996). Editorial Statement. Psychoanal. Dial., 6(1):1-3.

(1996). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 6(1):1-3

Editorial Statement

Stephen A. Mitchell, Ph.D.

This issue marks the fifth anniversary of psychoanalytic Dialogues, a suitable occasion to note the enormous changes in the world of psychoanalysis, both in the United States and internationally, in the few short years since our inception.

When Psychoanalytic Dialogues was first conceived, the relational perspectives it hoped to provide expression for constituted, if not voices in the wilderness, certainly nonmainstream viewpoints. Object relations theories, interpersonal psychoanalysis, self psychology—all had established important presences on the psychoanalytic scene but were regarded largely as secondary offshoots, peripheral developments, and, as such, were markedly underrepresented in the traditional journals. In these few short years, there has been a gradual but clear shift in the center of gravity within the psychoanalytic world, with relational-model thinking and clinical sensibilities now occupying a central place, both in theorizing and in clinical practice. Over this brief span, all the major American psychoanalytic journals have changed editorship and have a new look, both literally and metaphorically. In most quarters, there has developed a refreshing sense of openness to comparative theory and technique and a greater receptivity to new ideas and clear evidence of the impact relational thinking, in its various forms, has had on contemporary psychoanalytic thought and practice.

These developments are all extremely welcome ones, and those of us who have shaped and guided Psychoanalytic Dialogues are very gratified with respect to the role we have played in them. But they also necessitate a new set of concerns for authors from relational perspectives that Psychoanalytic Dialogues would like to help bring into focus.


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