Object Relations Theories and Psychopathology: A Comprehensive Text / Edition 1

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Object relations theories, both British and American, have achieved increasing prominence in recent years as the limitations of the classical psychoanalytic model have become more apparent. Despite the plethora of books written from an object relations perspective, there has to date been no textbook describing and comparing the various theories with a focus on their clinical applications. Object Relations Theories and Psychopathology: A Comprehensive Text brilliantly fills this gap in the literature. Frank Summers provides thorough, lucid, and critically informed accounts of the work of each of the major object relations theorists: Fairbairn, Guntrip, Melanie Klein, Winnicott, Kernberg, and Kohut. His expositions achieve distinction on two counts. First, the work of each object relations theorist is presented as a comprehensive whole, with separate sections of each chapter expounding the theorist's ideas and assumptions about metapsychology, development, psychopathology, and treatment. Summers concludes each account with a critical evaluation of the strengths and limitations of the theory in question. Second, the emphasis in each chapter is on issues of clinical understanding and technique. Making extensive use of case material provided by each of the theorists, he shows how each object relations theory yields specific clinical approaches to a variety of syndromes, and how these approaches, in turn, entail specific modifications in clinical technique. Beyond his detailed attention to the theoretical and technical differences among object relations theories, Summers offers two concluding chapters that highlight the broad commonalities that link all object relations theories and set them apart from other contemporary approaches. His penultimate chapter discusses the similarities and differences of object relations and interpersonal theories. And his concluding chapter outlines a pragmatic object relations approach to development, psychopathology, and technique th
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Summers' talent as a writer is considerable, and given the density and complexity of the material, hes work is quite readable, while also maintaining a high level of theoretical and clinical sophistication. In addition to his integrative introductory and concluding chapters, Summers explores in fine detail the work of Ronald Fairbairn and Harry Guntrip, Melanie Klein, D. W. Winnicott, Otto Kernberg, Heinz Kohut, and the interpersonal school...a carefully researched, very thoughtful, and highly intelligent in-depth study of a variety of perspectives...a volume that took considerable thought and an enormous effort to compile."

- Irwin Hirsch, Ph.D., JAPA

"[Summers] presents a detailed survey of major theorists and their adherents (Klein, Fairbairn, Guntrip, Winnicott, Kernberg, and Kohut), and compares their theories with each other and with those of Jacobson, Mahler, Bowlby, Harry Stack Sullivan and Levenson, Greenberg and Mitchell, and Gill and Hoffman. . . . For psychoanalysts and psychoanalytic psychotherapists seeking greater familiarity with contemporary object relations theories that might improve therapeutic effectiveness, this book is essential reading."

- Stanford R. Gamm, Readings

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780881631555
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 4/28/1994
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 424
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Frank Summers, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst, is a training and supervising analyst at the Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis and an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and the Behavioral Sciences at Northwestern University Medical School. A member of the faculties of the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis, the Minnesota Psychoanalytic Institute, and the Wisconsin Psychoanalytic Institute, Dr. Summers maintains a private practice of psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic therapy in Chicago, IL.

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Table of Contents

1 The Origins of Object Relations Theories 1
2 The Work of W. R. D. Fairbairn and Harry Guntrip 25
3 The Work of Melanie Klein 73
4 The Work of D. W. Winnicott 137
5 The Work of Otto Kernberg 191
6 The Work of Heinz Kohut 247
7 The Interpersonalists 311
8 An Object Relations Paradigm for Psychoanalysis 345
References 381
Index 391
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