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Mitchell, S.A. Harris, A. (2004). What's American About American Psychoanalysis?. Psychoanal. Dial., 14(2):165-191.

(2004). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 14(2):165-191

What's American About American Psychoanalysis?

Stephen A. Mitchell, Ph.D. and Adrienne Harris, Ph.D.

In this essay, we pose the question of psychoanalysis and national character. We explore the Americanness of psychoanalysis in this country through an examination of the history of its emergence in the early and mid-20th century, and through an examination of the impact of pragmatism on the formation and evolution of psychoanalysis in the United States. We consider American models of change and the impact of theoretical movements such as feminism and queer theory. We explore a particular quality and meaning of unconscious phenomena through an examination of American visions of nature over the past century and a half. The impact of elements of national identity and dominant American ideas and practices on relational psychoanalysis is also addressed.

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