Relying on and developing the ideas of W.R. Bion, this book observes psychoanalytic thinking through three prisms: person, group and society. The book is divided into four sections. The first revolves around the individual. Clinical in its emphasis, it discusses Bion's theory of thinking, his reading of the Oedipus myth and his notion of the "selected fact". These are illustrated by vignettes highlighting the emotional aspect of thinking. The second discusses the small group and its unconscious processes. Although Bion's paradigms have greatly influenced psychoanalytic conceptions of small group processes, this section integrates the thinking of Bion with that of Klein, Foulkes, Turquet, Lawrence and Hopper. The third, focusing on the feelings of despair and helplessness in the face of repetitive, unending war, is inspired by the author's life in Israel. It relates to society at large and the traumatic history of the Jewish people: the Holocaust is still inscribed in the Israeli social-unconscious and this social trauma has considerable impact on the Jewish-Arab conflict.
Drawing on the seminal ideas of British, European and American group analysts, psychoanalysts, social psychologists and social scientists, the books in this series focus on the study of small and large groups, organisations and other social systems, and on the study of the transpersonal and transgenerational sociality of human nature. NILGA books will be required reading for the members of professional organisations in the field of group analysis, psychoanalysis, and related social sciences. They will be indispensable for the "formation" of students of psychotherapy, whether they are mainly interested in clinical work with patients or in consultancy to teams and organisational clients within the private and public sectors.