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Flink, P. (2000). Metapsychology and the Suggestion Argument. A reply to Grünbaum's critique of psychoanalysis: Ari Ollinheimo & Risto Vuorinen. Helsinki: Commentationes Scientiarum Socialum, 53:1999. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 23(1):153-156.

(2000). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 23(1):153-156

Metapsychology and the Suggestion Argument. A reply to Grünbaum's critique of psychoanalysis: Ari Ollinheimo & Risto Vuorinen. Helsinki: Commentationes Scientiarum Socialum, 53:1999

Review by:
Per-Olof Flink

I was gratified and at the same time a little sad as I read through this book of 129 pages. Its organization bears witness to the pains taken by the authors to make the contents and the subject easy to comprehend in spite of the fact that its line of argument is not generally familiar to the majority of psychoanalysts. This is the background: Adolf Grünbaum is a philosopher and science theoretician who, ever since the mid-70s, has devoted himself to questions of scientific theory directly affecting psychoanalysis. In 1984, he published a book that has attracted a great deal of attention, The Foundations of Psychoanalysis: A Philosophical Critique. A few years later, in 1993, Validation in the Clinical Theory of Psychoanalysis: A Study in the Philosophy of Psychoanalysis was published. In the latter, revisions were made, including replies to criticism of the first book from psychoanalytical quarters.

Within the psychoanalytical movement, opinions about Grünbaum and his declared logical-empirical position are very divided. It is plain to be seen that among psychoanalysts, on the one hand, he is as loathsome as the plague. On the other hand, he is respected for the enormous amount of work he has put into his through study of his subject as well as for his ability to advance compelling criticism of scientific theory. Some of this may be found in the 1999 edition of the IPA's An Open Door Review of Outcome Studies in Psychoanalysis, where this rift and its significance are articulated in the two introductory comments on psychoanalytic research by Roger Perron and Peter Fonagy.

Ollinheimo and Vuroinen have accepted the challenge of Grünbaum's first book, and in their own book, present a reply to the criticism.

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