New Models of Bereavement Theory and Treatment : New Mourning book cover
1st Edition

New Models of Bereavement Theory and Treatment
New Mourning

Edited By

George Hagman

ISBN 9781138809673
Published April 11, 2016 by Routledge
246 Pages

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Book Description

Honoring the centennial of Sigmund Freud’s seminal paper Mourning and Melancholia, New Models of Bereavement Theory and Treatment: New Mourning is a major contribution to our culture’s changing view of bereavement and mourning, identifying flaws in old models and offering a new, valid and effective approach.

George Hagman and his fellow contributors bring together key psychoanalytic texts from the past 20 years, exploring contemporary research, clinical practice and model building relating to the problems of bereavement, mourning and grief. They propose changes to the asocial, intra-psychic nature of the standard analytic model of mourning, changes compatible with contemporary psychoanalytic theory and practice. Arguing that the most important goal of mourning is often to preserve, rather than give up the relationship to the deceased, this book provides a more positive, hopeful model. Crucially, it emphasizes the importance of mourning together, rather than alone.

New Models of Bereavement Theory and Treatment: New Mourning will be the go-to resource for researchers, clinicians and interested lay people seeking a clear, accessible overview of contemporary mourning theory, useful in their daily lives and in clinical practice. It will appeal to psychoanalysts, psychotherapists, grief counsellors, as well teachers, undergraduates and advanced students studying in the field.

Table of Contents

Dedication. Acknowledgements. Chapter 1: Preface: New Mourning. Chapter 2: Introduction, Robert A. Neimeyer. Chapter 3: Mourning: A Review And Reconsideration. Chapter 4: Object Loss and Selfobject Loss: A Contribution to Understanding Mourning and the Failure to Mourn, Estelle Shane and Morton Shane. Chapter 5: The Psychoanalytic Understanding and Treatment of Double Parent Loss. Chapter 6: Flight from the Subjectivity of the Other: Pathological Adaptation to Childhood Parent Loss. Chapter 7: Mourning Theory Reconsidered, R. Dennis Shelby. Chapter 8: The Role Of The Other In Mourning. Chapter 9: Mourning and the Holding Function of Shiva, Joyce Slochower. Chapter 10: Self Experience in Mourning. Chapter 11: Detachment and Continuity: The Two Tasks of Mourning, Robert Gaines. Chapter 12: Some Observations of the Mourning Process, Otto Kernberg, M.D. Chapter 13: Out of the Analytic Shadow: On the Dynamics of Commemorative Ritual, Joyce Slochower. Chapter 14: New Mourning.

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George Hagman, LCSW, is a psychoanalyst and clinical social worker practicing in New York City and Stamford, Connecticut. A member of the faculty of the Training and Research Institute for Intersubjective Self Psychology, his most recent Routledge title is Creative Analysis: Art, creativity and clinical process (2014).


In this remarkable book, Hagman and his fellow psychoanalytic contributors bring psychoanalytic theory in line with the contemporary study of bereavement. They find that rather than an individual psychological process, mourning is interpersonal and social, and not about detaching from the dead, but rather about finding ways to preserve the bond and making sense of the death and life now forever changed. This book is a major breakthrough in psychoanalytic thought. Readers inside and outside the psychoanalytic tradition can read it as a good account of contemporary models of bereavement and therapeutic practice.-Dennis Klass, Ph.D. Author of Dead but not Lost: Grief Narratives in Religious Traditions (2005), The Spiritual Lives of Bereaved Parents (1995) and Editor of Continuing Bonds: New Understandings of Grief (1996).

We owe our gratitude to George Hagman, a wise clinical elder and humanist. His vision, writings, and his selection of like-minded contributors, brings a much-needed change to our old, dead psychoanalytic narratives of loss and mourning. Their collective work offers a vision of mourning that is open-ending, social and relational, transformative perhaps even creative, and allows for the truth of the human need for continuity of loving attachments even after death.-Donna Bassin, Ph.D. Author, artist, film-maker. Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor at New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis and private practice, New York City.