British Psychoanalysis: New Perspectives in the Independent Tradition, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

British Psychoanalysis

New Perspectives in the Independent Tradition, 1st Edition

Edited by Gregorio Kohon


354 pages

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British Psychoanalysis: New Perspectives in the Independent Tradition is a new and extended edition of The British School of Psychoanalysis: The Independent Tradition, which explored the successes and failures of the early environment; transference and counter-transference in the psychoanalytic encounter; regression in the situation of treatment; and female sexuality. Published in the mid-1980s, it had an important influence on the development of psychoanalysis both in Great Britain and abroad, was translated into several languages and became a central textbook in academic and professional courses.

This new, updated book includes not only many of the original papers, but also new chapters written for this volume by Hannah Browne, Josh Cohen, Steven Groarke, Gregorio Kohon, Rosine Perelberg and Megan Virtue. Addressing and reflecting on the four main themes of the first collection, the new papers discuss such subjects as:

· a new focus on earliest infancy

· new directions in Independent clinical thinking

· the question of therapeutic regression

. the centrality of sexual difference in Freud.

They also highlight the connections between and the mutual influence of British and French psychoanalysis, now a critical subject in contemporary psychoanalytic debates.

British Psychoanalysis: New Perspectives in the Independent Tradition will be important not only to psychoanalysts and psychoanalytic psychotherapists and the full spectrum of professionals involved in mental health. It will be of great value in psychotherapy and counselling training and an important resource for teaching and academic activities.


"With characteristic intellectual rigour, literary elegance and generosity, Kohon presents a new version of his influential book on the Independent tradition in British psychoanalysis. He has invited contemporary psychoanalysts to reflect upon the main themes of the earlier work. Situating the book within psychoanalysis’ engagement with temporality and the concept of Nactraglikheit, the link is made with the essential papers from the rich clinical and theoretical Independent tradition whilst reconsidering them within a contemporary focus, particularly the developments in French psychoanalysis. The result is a finely woven and deeply relevant synthesis of past and present. Kohon writes of the ‘greedy intellectual curiosity’ central to psychoanalysis; his book is a beautiful example of that curiosity."-Rosemary Davies, Training Analyst of the British Psychoanalytical Society.

"In this sparkling contribution, Kohon has curated a collection of papers inspired by what thirty years ago he identified as the British Independent Tradition. This book is more than a guide to one dialect of the psychoanalytic project. It is, in fact, an impressive renewal of the true meaning of independent thought: an engagement which honours, challenges, and creatively advances a tradition. Each essay pulls its weight. Each reading rewards. Kohon and his colleagues demonstrate that psychoanalytic thinking, writing and practice will remain inventive and compelling as long as the psychoanalytic imagination refuses to compromise its radical challenge to the simplified, the self-serving and the status quo. In this independent spirit lies our replenishment and our renewal."-Jed Sekoff, Training Analyst of the Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Thirty years later: looking back into the future Gregorio Kohon

Chapter 2: A multi-dimensional frame of reference: the Independent tradition Rosine Jozef Perelberg


Gregorio Kohon

Chapter 3: Prefatory remarks

Chapter 4: Notes on the history of the psychoanalytic movement in Great Britain

Chapter 5: Countertransference: an Independent view

Chapter 6: Concluding remarks


Chapter 7: Psychic life: a new focus on earliest infancy Josh Cohen

Chapter 8: The transformational object Christopher Bollas

Chapter 9: The concept of cumulative trauma M. Masud R. Khan

Chapter 10: Fear of breakdown Donald W. Winnicott


Chapter 11: Making sense together: new directions in Independent clinical thinking Steven Groarke

Chapter 12: ‘Slouching towards Bethlehem …’: or thinking about the unthinkable in psychoanalysis Nina E.C. Coltart

Chapter 13: Elements of the psychoanalytic relationship and their therapeutic implications John Klauber

Chapter 14: Affects and the psychoanalytic situation Adam Limentani

Chapter 15: The analyst’s act of freedom as agent of therapeutic change Neville Symington


Chapter 16: Regression: allowing the future to be re-imagined Hannah Browne

Chapter 17: The unobtrusive analyst Michael Balint

Chapter 18: Some pressures on the analyst for physical contact during the reliving of an early trauma Patrick J. Casement

Chapter 19: Problems of management in the analysis of a hallucinating hysteric Harold Stewart


Chapter 20: The centrality of sexual difference in Freud: the work of Gregorio Kohon and Juliet Mitchell Megan Virtue

Chapter 21: Reflections on Dora: the case of hysteria Gregorio Kohon

Chapter 22: The question of femininity and the theory of psychoanalysis Juliet Mitchell

About the Editor

Gregorio Kohon is a Training Analyst of the British Psychoanalytical Society. His psychoanalytic publications include Reflections on the Aesthetic Experience: Psychoanalysis and the Uncanny, published by Routledge in 2016.

About the Series

The New Library of Psychoanalysis

The New Library of Psychoanalysis is published by Routledge Mental Health in association with the Institute of Psychoanalysis, London.

Its purpose is to facilitate a greater and more widespread appreciation of psychoanalysis and to provide a forum for increasing mutual understanding between psychoanalysts and those in other disciplines. The series also aims to make some of the work of continental and other non-English speaking analysts more readily available to English-speaking readers, and to increase the interchange of ideas between British and American analysts.

The New Library of Psychoanalysis published its first book in 1987 under the editorship of David Tuckett, later followed by Elizabeth Bott Spillius, Susan Budd and Dana Birksted-Breen. A considerable number of Associate Editors and readers have assisted the editors.

Under the guidance of Foreign Rights Editors, a considerable number of the New Library books have been published abroad, particularly in Brazil, Germany, France, Italy, Peru, Spain and Japan.

The aim of the New Library of Psychoanalysis is to maintain the high level of scholarship of the previous series, to provide a forum for increasing understanding between psychoanalysis and other disciplines and to increase the interest of the general book-reading public in psychoanalysis.

The New Library of Psychoanalysis also aims to help the various schools of psychoanalysis to better understand each other. It has published books representing all three schools of thought in British psychoanalysis, including a particularly important work edited by Pearl King and Riccardo Steiner, expounding the intellectual and organisational controversies that developed in the British psychoanalytical Society between Kleinian, Viennese and 'middle group' analysts during the Second World War.

The New Library of Psychoanalysis has also translated and published several books by Continental psychoanalysts, and it plans in the future to continue the policy of publishing books that express as clearly as possible a variety of psychoanalytic points of view.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Movements / Psychoanalysis
PSYCHOLOGY / Mental Health