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Nelson, M.C. (1969-1970). Modern Psychoanalysis of the Schizophrenic Patient. Hyman Spotnitz. New York: Grune & Stratton, 1969. vi + 234 pp.. Psychoanal. Rev., 56D(4):642-646.

(1969-1970). Psychoanalytic Review, 56D(4):642-646

Book Review

Modern Psychoanalysis of the Schizophrenic Patient. Hyman Spotnitz. New York: Grune & Stratton, 1969. vi + 234 pp.

Review by:
Marie Coleman Nelson

This volume, long awaited by clinicians whose skills have been directly augmented through supervision or treatment by its author, summarizes in highly condensed form the seminal concepts developed by Dr. Spotnitz during more than thirty years of teaching, supervision and private practice. In its emphasis on transference and resistance his book ranks among the most interesting and creative of clinical texts by analysts of essentially Freudian persuasion—Glover, Greenson, Tarachow, Searles, Winnicott and Balint. All of these, despite differences regarding the applicability of psychoanalysis to the more severe emotional disorders, manifest deep concern with shaping technique to meet the developmental needs of the patient, and regard the dynamics of contact between therapist and patient as the very core of treatment.

Dr. Spotnitz's work, however, undertakes the specific task of providing a theory of treatment and guidelines for treatment of the narcissistic disorders. As such, it warrants study in particular association with the writings of Searles, Winnicott and Balint, who share an exceptional sensitivity to the two-person relationship, yet approach the schizophrenic constellation from somewhat different vantage points.

Where, exactly, the practice of psychoanalysis leaves off and psychoanalytically-oriented psychotherapy begins in the treatment of preoedipal disorders has long been a matter of debate.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

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