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Moraitis, G. (1994). Beyond the Blueprints of Mental Function. Psychoanal. Inq., 14(2):261-275.

(1994). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 14(2):261-275

Beyond the Blueprints of Mental Function

George Moraitis, M.D.

In reviewing freud's scientific journey, Gedo and Wolf (1976) pointed out that “scientific discoveries were not created from the void. They were determined by major developments in the intellectual climate that preceded them” (p. 12). Models of the Mind is no exception to that. It was published in 1973, shortly after Kohut's The Analysis of the Self (1971) and at the time when both Gedo and Goldberg were playing a pivotal role in Kohut's intellectual movement. It is hard to overestimate the appeal and excitement generated by Kohut's ideas in Chicago at that time. I believe Models of the Mind represents the authors' efforts to help the psychoanalytic reader place the new discoveries into a broader perspective that takes into account the novelties involved without throwing away the baby of psychoanalysis, as it had evolved up to that time, along with the bathwater of what was not felt to be useful and relevant. At the time, Kohut was advocating separate developmental lines for narcissism and object libido in an effort to disengage from his propositions those of Freud's ideas that had no relevance to his own. It was an approach of coexistence between Freudian psychology and the emerging self psychology, presumably on a separate but equal basis. Gradually this paved the way to conceptualizing self psychology as the superordinate explanatory theory in psychoanalysis.

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