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Chapter Two - The Trauma of Lost Love in Psychoanalysis

Elisabeth Young-Bruehl Karnac Books ePub

CHAPTER TWO

The trauma of lost love in psychoanalysis

Most historians agree that in the history of psychoanalysis Freud's Beyond the Pleasure Principle (1920g) marks a juncture, even perhaps the juncture. Until 1920, no one could be a Freudian without subscribing to his libido theory—in its evolving formulation—and to the centrality of the sexual instinctual drive in the aetiology of the neuroses. Non-subscribers left the movement. Adler's and Jung's withdrawals became like traumas that Freud kept trying to master in writing about them. But in Beyond the Pleasure Principle, Freud himself brought into question the defining position of the libido theory. He disagreed with himself, and the disagreements his internal debate provoked among his followers have, to this day, not ceased reverberating. But, because the master's revision was so problematic, and got no less so as he elaborated his new theory in some later works while rejecting it in others, his followers have felt free to disagree without needing to become schismatics. Beyond the Pleasure Principle was more a statement of intense theoretical need than a diktat.

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CHAPTER THIRTY: The Grand Tour of New England

Gillian Preston Karnac Books ePub

“Pay here by American Express—’That’ll do nicely’—he actually said it. Can’t remember now how or why I got an A.E. Card, but it’s certainly useful abroad.”

8.46 pm Sat Nov 15. FABULOUS! Loving every minute of it!! Jan [Webster] came right to Concorde Lounge, and in it, and we had a real little party—champagne, delicious little sandwiches, very elegant. Concorde waiting quietly outside on its own place. Flights called, and off Jan went, and in I went. Seat 22A, by window, 22B empty so just put my legs and coat there. The pop group Duran Duran—3 strange but q. nice, but noisy, young men were just in front of me. I think one was high on cocaine—he threw himself about and shrieked with laughter—at one point he threw himself so hard against his seat back that he upset my orange juice—not on me! I poked his shoulder hard, and said WILL YOU STOP DOING THAT? He was very apologetic—but as Concord was ½ empty I moved back 2 rows to peace and quiet. Had another orange juice, and 3 darling canapés—a thick lush chunk of paté de foie w. a big truffle in it, on a tiny round of toast, a midget pastry boat with 4 tiny shrimps and mayonnaise on it, and a little whorled round sandwich of smoked salmon. Then elegant white cloth, tray and DINNER—by now, incidentally we are going at Mach 1.5 and soon at Mach 2, = twice the speed of sound, at 59,000 ft. We had a delicate, delicious serving of lobster, surrounded by (a) a few prawns, (b) some chopped onion, (c) some whipped mayonnaise in a scooped out half tomato, and (d) about a dessert spoonful of beluga caviare in half a hard boiled egg, yolk scooped out and chopped beside. !! With a beautifully tossed, dressed, small salad of lettuce, peppers, celery, walnuts and pineapple. Then steak or partridge, so I had partridge, 3 delicate breast slices rolled in bacon with crispy bacon bits stirred in with crispy hot cabbage, broccoli, carrots, and courgettes. I had 2 glasses of a nice chablis with all this. Then a fruit jelly with grapes, fresh orange, and fresh pineapple, then cheese and bics, coffee, and a tiny box of chocolates which I’ve saved. Liqueurs and champers flowing like water, and Duran Duran getting noisier, but I didn’t have any—had some more orange juice and coffee. I read the Times and the Spectator and started my K. Amis book—but only just. The flight took 3 hrs and 25 mins! We landed at JFK at 5.35, their time, and I had the Concorde Limousine Service downtown. And boy, do I mean Limousine! About 15 feet long—a whole room in the back, with a cocktail cabinet! and black glass. I hoped everyone thought it was the Queen at least.

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CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO: Little Christmas

Gillian Preston Karnac Books ePub

Mary Nottidge

Nina was my godmother, or Buddha-Mum, as she referred to herself. Having studied medicine at Bart’s with my father in the 1950s, she had been part of the same group of devout Christians known as the St Augustine’s Society. My father introduced her to my mother before they were married and the three of them remained great friends until her death in 1997. She once told my father, “I’ve come to the conclusion that God for me is an interval between lovers”. When my parents approached her to be my godmother she was already exploring Buddhism and my mother was concerned that she might not want to accept the role. Their hope was that a godparent might give their children an adult friend, an alternative to the parents, rather than testing them on the Ten Commandments. Ever quick, Nina’s reply was, “But of course I shall constantly be asking Mary if she’s committing adultery!” By the time I knew her she was a Buddhist and the most fabulous godmother you could wish for. She had a marvellous ability to make one feel incredibly special and was adored by the whole family.

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CHAPTER EIGHT: Nina Coltart the consultant: hospitality conditional and unconditional

Gillian Preston Karnac Books ePub

Pina Antinucci

The home of the Sybil

In the photograph of Nina Coltart I retain firmly impressed in my memory, the expertise and acumen of the diagnostician go hand in hand with her hieratic demeanour; a kind of mystique, which she played on, with wisdom and self-irony, as she declared that her stance was in the service of the in(tro)duction to the mysteries of the unconscious. The neophyte—the prospective patient—had to go through a momentous initiation process, as he was ushered into her consulting room, to meet the priestess of psychoanalysis.

I have used the terms “mystery” and “neophyte”, employing a language that connotes an initiation process, and this is what I recall my encounter with her to have meant—an initiation into psychoanalysis.

I encountered Dr Coltart the consultant from a variety of perspectives, as an analysand-to-be, as a practitioner receiving and welcoming her referrals, and, later on, even as a member of the Directorate of the London Clinic. In these different capacities, I had the opportunity to reflect on her philosophy and attitude regarding assessment interviews. There are many themes I could and will pick up, many things I could say, the most important of which, however, is her capacity to capture the person’s need to find an internal place to belong to, and a language of his or her own. This is certainly what she elicited from me, as I am more and more aware, as I circle back to that encounter repeatedly in the course of time. And I will start from there.

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Chapter Six - Reflections on Women and Psychoanalysis

Elisabeth Young-Bruehl Karnac Books ePub

CHAPTER SIX

Reflections on women and psychoanalysis

Introduction

I wanted to prepare a historical and clinical text that would bring us to the present tense of “Women and Psychoanalysis”, let us reflect on how we—we in the field of psychoanalysis—have come a long way on this topic, and where we might be going. So I thought about writing a brief history—a “multibiography”—of women psychoanalysts, our foremothers, and comparing their situations with ours. Then I thought about writing a brief history of women in psychoanalysis—-of women as patients—focusing on how women patients now are understood and treated. With these possibilities, I wanted to avoid writing a history of changing views in psychoanalysis of female psychology, as that has been done many times, for many purposes. Not one of you is in need of such a treatise, for you have all taken whole courses on this “changing views” theme at your training institutes, and many of you teach such courses. In fact, one of the key features of the present moment of “Women and Psychoanalysis” is that we are all well aware of the history of changing views in psychoanalysis of female psychology; we are thoroughly historicised.

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