Essential Readings from the Melanie Klein Archives : Original Papers and Critical Reflections book cover
1st Edition

Essential Readings from the Melanie Klein Archives
Original Papers and Critical Reflections

Edited By

Jane Milton

ISBN 9780367337902
Published February 21, 2020 by Routledge
284 Pages

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Book Description

Essential Readings from the Melanie Klein Archives: Original Papers and Critical Reflections brings together a selection of previously unpublished material by Melanie Klein, one of the key architects of child psychoanalysis, and sets it in the context of the contemporary understanding of her work, with contributions by a range of leading Klein scholars.

The book contains lectures, letters, notes and an autobiography by Klein, as well as key pieces of analysis on Klein’s work from major Kleinian analysts, with contributions from Claudia Frank, R.D. Hinshelwood, Jane Milton and Maria Rhode based on wide-ranging research into Klein’s archive. Bringing the work of Claudia Frank to an English audience for the first time, there is also a new chapter by Maria Rhode featuring further case material on Klein’s famous young patient ‘Dick’, the subject of Klein’s 1930 paper on symbolism, which is discussed in relation to current ideas about the autistic spectrum. This material fleshes out our understanding of Klein’s thinking, shines new light on the major features of her work, and the influences on the analyst herself.

Melanie Klein was a pioneering and sometimes controversial figure within psychoanalysis, whose new approach to child analysis and new understanding of our inner world were revolutionary. Her large archive (now available online) contains papers and drafts of papers, notes for lectures and seminars and a vast amount of case material, all of which is of scientific interest. Essential Readings from the Melanie Klein Archives will be of great interest to Klein scholars, as well as to researchers and readers in the wider history and development of psychoanalysis.

Table of Contents

Foreword by John Steiner of the Melanie Klein Trust.

Author Biographies


Editor’s Introduction


Chapter 1: The need for psychoanalysis in certain types of difficult children (1936)Chapter 2: On Play (1937)

Chapter 3: The importance of the unconscious mind for the whole personality (1939)

Chapter 4: Sadness and Loss in the Emotional Life of the Young Child (1939)

Chapter 5: Autobiography and reflections (1955 and 1959) 


Chapter 6: Melanie Klein’s contemporaneous references to Hitler and the Second World War in her therapeutic sessions. Claudia Frank

Chapter 7: An unpublished contribution of Melanie Klein on reassurance. Claudia Frank

Chapter 8: Melanie Klein’s unpublished ‘Don Juan’ paper. Claudia Frank

Chapter 9: Melanie Klein and Repression: An examination of some unpublished notes of 1934. RD Hinshelwood

Chapter 10: Melanie Klein and countertransference. RD Hinshelwood

Chapter 11: The Elusive Concept of ‘Internal Objects’ RD Hinshelwood

Chapter 12: Klein’s further thoughts on Loneliness. Jane Milton

Chapter 13: Notes on "Dick" in the Melanie Klein archive. Maria Rhode

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Dr Jane Milton is a psychiatrist and a training analyst of the British Psychoanalytical Society. Having worked as a consultant psychiatrist at Kings College Hospital and the Tavistock Clinic, she is now in full-time psychoanalytic practice. She is archivist for the Melanie Klein Trust and has published books and papers on various psychoanalytic topics.


"The publication of this volume of papers from the Klein archive, together with critical discussion by notable Klein scholars, is a most exciting event. Every chapter is of interest, not only for its historical significance, but also because Klein’s clinical and theoretical thinking is further explored in the excellent commentaries and related to later developments in psychoanalysis. I recommend it most warmly. It forms an essential and impressive part of the array of recent books about Klein which attest to the continuing fertility of her legacy."

Margaret Rustin, Honorary Consultant Child Psychotherapist, Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, co-author of Reading Klein


"This volume adds significantly to our understanding of Melanie Klein, her thinking and her internal world. We see her as a child, powerless to prevent the losses inflicted on her family; longing for knowledge and for the power to reduce suffering. We learn of Klein’s early defiance, a hint of the powerful thinker whose radical ideas were later to spark fierce debate across the psychoanalytic world. We are shown too, a softer, more vulnerable and less certain Klein. Melanie Klein’s humanity shines out of the chapters in this book."

Penelope Garvey, Training Analyst British Psychoanalytical Society