The Dead Mother brings together original essays in honour of André Green. Written by distinguished psychoanalysts, the collection develops the theme of his most famous paper of the same title, and describes the value of the dead mother to other areas of clinical interest: psychic reality, borderline phenomena, passions and identification.
The concept of the 'dead mother' describes a clinical phenomenon, sometimes difficult to identify, but always present in a substantial number of patients. It describes a process by which the image of a living and loving mother is transformed into a distant figure; a toneless, practically inanimate, dead parent. In reality, the mother remains alive, but she has psychically 'died' for the child.
This produces a depression in the child, who carries these feelings within him into adult life, as the experience of the loss of the mother's love is followed by the loss of meaning in life. Nothing makes sense any more for the child, but life seems to continue under the appearance of normality.
The Dead Mother is a valuable contribution to literature on psychoanalytic and psychotheraputic approaches to grief, loss and depression.
"Readers will find this a valuable book - for the lively dialogue between Green and Kohon, its return to Green's major paper 'The dead mother', for the individual authors' impressive responses to it, and for the glimpse of the walls in the present psychoanalytic scene, which Green has both run up against and surmounted." - Edna O'Shaughnessy, The International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 82 (3), 2001
Preface, Acknowledgements 1. Introduction 2. The Greening of psychoanalysis 3. Psychic reality, negation, and the analytic setting 4. The dead mother syndrome and the reconstruction of trauma 5. Dead Mother, dead child 6. The undead: necromancy and the innner world 7. Analysing forms of aliveness and deadness of the transference-contertransference 8. The dead mother: variations on a theme 9. Taking aims - Andre Green and the pragmatics of passion 10. The interplay of identifications: violence, hysteria, and the repudiation of femininity. 11. The dynamics of the history of psychoanalysis - Anna Freud, Leo Rangell, and Andre Green 12. The intuition of the negative in playing and reality. Biographical Notes.
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.