Hans Juergen Wirth, a leading German psychoanalyst and editor of the journal Psychosozial, brings cultural breadth, historical perspective, and analytic astuteness to bear in considering the "collective trauma" of 9/11. His meditation, which brings into its compass the psychic structure of suicide bombers and the psycho-political causes and consequences of the Iraq war, is especially insightful in considering the psychological meaning of 9/11 for the world outside the U.S. In complementary forays into psyche and politics, Wirth explores the relationship of xenophobia and violence; the story of Jewish analysts who emigrated from Nazi Germany to the United States; the idea of man in psychoanalysis; and the family dynamics that sustain the AIDS phobia. These wonderfully illuminating essays, both cautionary and constructive, show how clinical experience with the unconscious processes of violence, traumatization, and destructiveness can be foundational to new political strategies for dealing with collective violence.
"A collection of illuminating psychoanalytic essays on collective and individual trauma by a seasoned European psychoanalyst and astute observer of such pervasive social ills as pathological aggression and narcissism. A powerful statement marked by clarity of prose and steadfastness of purpose."
- Zvi Lothane, M.D., Author, In Defense of Schreber (Analytic Press, 1992)
9/11 as a Collective Trauma. Xenophobia and Violence as a Family and Psychosocial Disease. Emigration, Biography and Psychoanalysis: Jewish Psychoanalysts Who Emigrated to the United States of America. The Idea of Man in Psychoanalysis: Creator of His Own Life or Subject to the Dark Instinctual Side of Human Nature? About Family Dynamics and the AIDS Phobia: A Case Study.