'Containing clinical examples of working in analysis with patients who need to experience pain in their intimate relationships, and cause pain in anyone who gets close to them, this book explores the feelings that can prevent people from finding comfort in their human relationships. Better yet, it shows how sensitive and experienced therapists have helped such difficult patients and by doing so provides a model of how to treat patients with this excruciating pathology. The differing theoretical perspectives provided by colleagues who have read the clinical material add ways to understand what happened in the testaments and ways to generalize the outcomes.'- Arlene Kramer Richards, training and supervising analyst at the Contemporary Freudian Society, and author of Psychoanalysis: Listening to Understand'Exploring masochism and sadism, two of the most controversial and still partially enigmatic areas of the human pathological mind, this book utilizes contemporary psychoanalytic tools for a much more universal investigation at the boundaries between life and death. The space where analyst and patient interact daily becomes here the most advanced place for studying the roots and the ways of the painful human vicissitudes regarding violence, humiliation, cruelty, failure, sacrifice and hopelessness. Can two people, working together, give a new voice, from the profound to the eternal tragedies which affect the world? Yes, they can. This wonderful book shows how psychoanalysis today can help us in understanding many kinds of intrapsychic and interpersonal violence, from the most evident to the most subtly hidden and masked of them.'- Stefano Bolognini, President of the Italian Psychoanalytic Society, and author of Secret Passages: The Theory and Technique of Interpsychic Relations'Dread lurks whenever one approaches the dark danse macabre where Love and Hate wear each other's mask. To practice analysis is to attend such a ball, and no theory can spare an analyst the horrors of sadomasochism. In this uncommonly engaging work, analysts gifted as both writers and clinicians illuminate the subject, candidly detailing clinical struggles when facing malevolent forces. With discussants of widely varied theoretical approaches, they cast new light on sadomasochism, indeed on the analytic process itself. To read this volume of rare depth and breadth is to join a fascinating and moving conversational master class where clinical experience provides the data and open inquiry prevails. The subject is pain; the reading, a pleasure.'- Warren S. Poland, Poland, MD, psychoanalyst, author of Melting the Darkness, and recipient of the 2009 Sigourney AwardVom Verlag:
This book delves into the mysteries of sadomasochism in the clinical domain where transference and countertransference are at play. Four cases present the unfolding analytic interchange when life and death forces collide. Psychoanalysts provide commentaries from different points of view to unravel the threads binding the complex and puzzling phenomena that often become the underpinnings of lifelong perversions and narcissistic difficulties. Discussions highlight psychoanalytic thinking about conflict, instinctual life, object relations, trauma, narcissistic vulnerability, primitive states, and perversion. This is a clinically centered book in which psychoanalytic therapists will find maps for guiding their own work with sadomasochistic processes.
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