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Rizzuto, A. (2010). In Memoriam: Tribute to William W. Meissner. S.J, M.D. 1931-2010. Psychoanal. Rev., 97(4):iii-vi.

(2010). Psychoanalytic Review, 97(4):iii-vi

In Memoriam: Tribute to William W. Meissner. S.J, M.D. 1931-2010

Ana-María Rizzuto, M.D.

It is a great honor and a daunting task to be asked to celebrate the life and the scholarly contributions William W. Meissner, “Bill” for his friends and acquaintances, made to the psychoanalytic literature and to other fields. He was first and foremost a psychoanalytic theoretician and clinician. However, it should be said without contradiction, that he was also first and foremost, a member of the Society of Jesus, a priest and scholar, as so many Jesuits are. His commitment to his vocations as a Jesuit and as a psychoanalyst converged in his love of knowledge, his dedication to deepen the investigation of the mind and of all varieties of human experiences. He left few of those experiences untouched. He explored with his incisive capacity to describe, clarify, and theorize as a psychoanalyst, the lives of ordinary analysands, good neurotics, difficult borderlines, insistent paranoiacs, homosexuals and heterosexuals and did not hesitate to tackle the whole spectrum of life experiences from the art of Vincent van Gogh to the psychology of a saint, Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits. Dr. Meissner contributed a significant literature to the interface between religion, religious experience, and psychoanalysis, expanding and clarifying Freud's understanding of the field.

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