1st Edition

The Clinical Paradigms of Donald Winnicott and Wilfred Bion Comparisons and Dialogues

By Jan Abram, R.D. Hinshelwood Copyright 2023
    198 Pages
    by Routledge

    198 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book introduces the psychoanalytic principles of both Winnicott and Bion, to compare the ways in which their concepts evolved, and to show how their different approaches contribute to distinctive psychoanalytic paradigms that warrant further research.

    The book is comprised of five parts, each of which ends with a dialogue between authors, to provide an in-depth look at the perspectives of Winnicott and Bion on the following issues: the British Psychoanalytical Society; working with children and groups; the formulation of psychoanalytic principles; the consolidation of their ideas and new beginnings; and their clinical approaches. Structuring an analysis of Winnicott and Bion’s work in this way simultaneously acts as a comprehensive introduction to their thinking and provokes further research into the ways in which the Winnicottian and Bionian traditions interact.

    The Clinical Paradigms of Donald Winnicott and Wilfred Bion will appeal to all those seeking an introduction to psychoanalytic ideas and to these two schools of British Object Relations especially.

    Introduction  Part One: The British Psychoanalytical Society  1. Donald Winnicott and Kleinian Development  2. Wilfred Bion and Klein's Schizoid Mechanisms  Summary  Dialogue  Part Two: Working with Children and Groups  3. Babies and their Families  4. Psychodynamics and the Psychosocial  Summary  Dialogue  Part Three: The Principle Formulations  5. Holding  6. Transformations  Summary  Dialogue  Part Four: Consolidation and New Beginnings  7. From Primary Maternal Preoccupation to the Use of an Object  8. Rethinking and Making an Impact  Summary  Dialogue  Part Five: Clinical Approach  9. 'A Sample of the Original Failure'  10. Content and Process  Summary  Dialogue  Glossary


    Jan Abram is a training and supervising psychoanalyst of the British Psychoanalytical Society and visiting professor of the Psychoanalysis Unit, University College, London. She is vice- president of the European Psychoanalytic Federation. She has published several books and articles notably: The Language of Winnicott (1st edition 1996; 2nd edition 2007), which was judged Outstanding Academic Book of the Year (1997); Donald Winnicott Today (2013); The Surviving Object: Psychoanalytic Clinical Essays on Psychic Survival- of- the- Object (2022).

    R.D. Hinshelwood is a fellow of the British Psychoanalytical Society and of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. He has written widely on clinical psychoanalysis and its wider applications to society, politics and ethics as well as comparative research methods.

    ‘If Bion and Winnicott were to have had a discussion, what might it have been like? The need for this conversation to happen has passed down through the analytic generations and has here reached a very challenging and informed expression in the hands of Abram and Hinshelwood.’

    Nicola Abel-Hirsch, training and supervising analyst BPaS and author of Bion 365 Quotes

    ‘This second book in the series authored by Jan Abram and Bob Hinshelwood, fulfils its promise of opening up discussion and debate about the work of Wilfred Bion and Donald W. Winnicott. These two giants of mid-20th Century psychoanalysis were both born before the turn of the 19/20th century but were of different psychoanalytic generations. They were both personally marked by the horrors of the world wars, which in different ways affected their contributions to psychoanalysis, as they each took the influence of Melanie Klein in radically different directions. There is a freshness and immediacy to the to-and-fro of the dialogue between these two experts in their field, which follows the exposition of Bion and Winnicott's central concepts. The dialogue does much to shed light on the often confused equivalences that have been made between such concepts as "holding" in Winnicott and "container-contained" in Bion, both emphasising the differing roots in each conceptual frame and their consequence for clinical practice. The exchanges between Abram and Hinshelwood are exploratory and frank, respectful and challenging. In our discipline, that can sometimes divide along partisan lines, this is a refreshing and informative read.’

    Angela Joyce, training and supervising analyst BPaS, former chair The Winnicott Trust

    ‘Jan Abram and R.D. Hinshelwood are famous for their scholarship on the Winnicott and Kleinian tradition respectively, integrated in a great clinical experience. In this book they compare Winnicott and Bion head-to-head qua background, evolution, major concepts and psychoanalytic practice. The result is refreshing and easy to read. Not only the differences but also the common background (e.g. Klein’s influence), and the intertwinement of their concepts is highlighted. I enjoyed the lively discussion between Abram and Hinshelwood at the end of each part, that often led to surprising new points of view.’

    Rudi Vermote, training and supervising analyst, Belgian Psychoanalytic Society, author of Reading Bion