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Peringer, J. (2019). Authenticity in the psychoanalytic encounter: the work of Irma Brenman Pick. Psychoanal. Psychother., 33(1):72-74.

(2019). Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, 33(1):72-74

Authenticity in the psychoanalytic encounter: the work of Irma Brenman Pick

Review by:
Jane Peringer

I want to begin by saying what an excellent collection of papers this is, each one vividly illustrated with detailed and illuminating clinical material. I have read a number of these papers before, but reading them presented here together in book form, with the very helpful editing by Fakhry Davids and Naomi Shavit, has allowed me to appreciate the complexity of Brenman Pick’s thinking, thinking that seems really three dimensional in the way it captures both the depth and breadth of the experience for both patient and analyst as parties to the analytic experience

The papers cover the period from 1967, with Brenman Pick’s first published paper, ‘On Stealing’, to a paper from 2015, one of her most recent, which returns to an old theme about the difficulties of dependency on the inevitably fallible object, whether parent or analyst. The papers are arranged into four groups, covering the areas of Countertransference, Authenticity, Adolescence and Sexuality, and a last section entitled Further Clinical Themes. This grouping works well, with the editors providing a clearly written introduction to each section highlighting the main points. It does mean, however, that the papers are not quite in overall chronological order, and in some ways this is a shame – personally, I would have liked the opportunity to follow in detail the development of Brenman Pick’s thinking – but on the other hand chronological development is not the main intention of the book.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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