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Holt, H. (1969). Psychoanalytic Treatment of Characterological and Schizophrenic Disorders. Bryce L. Boyer and Peter L. Giovacchini. New York: Science House, 1967. 379 pp.. Psychoanal. Rev., 56A(1):150-154.

(1969). Psychoanalytic Review, 56A(1):150-154

Psychoanalytic Treatment of Characterological and Schizophrenic Disorders. Bryce L. Boyer and Peter L. Giovacchini. New York: Science House, 1967. 379 pp.

Review by:
Herbert Holt

The manifest purpose of this interesting volume is an examination of the authors' experience in extending the use of psychoanalytic techniques to the treatment of classes of patients for whom Freud believed them to be inappropriate. One anticipates the book's conclusion—that the use of analytic techniques can be so extended—and indeed this is the postulate of the volume. But such a change, based as it is on the reinterpretation of important elements of the original theory of psychoanalysis, invites the inference that theoretical as well as technical developments are taking place. Perhaps the therapeutic situation is to be understood in a new way also, and the old technical vocabulary infused with new meaning. It is this line of thinking which sustained the reviewer's attention in his task of evaluating the book for others.

An introductory chapter by Boyer is succeeded by eight substantive chapters on various aspects of the central question. Boyer contributes two historical chapters on the contributions of Freud and his followers plus an original contribution entitled “Office Treatment of Schizophrenic Patients: The Use of Psychoanalytic Therapy with Few Parameters. Introduction.” Edward D. Hoedemaker writes on the technical problem of psychotic identifications in schizophrenia. The remaining chapters are the work of Giovacchini on character disorders, and there is an epilogue. Boyer's contribution will probably seem of greatest importance, since it reports on a sustained effort with a selected group of patients over a considerable period of time, and thus takes on at least some of the characteristics of a structured clinical experiment.

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