The Dreams of Mabel Dodge
Diary of an Analysis with Smith Ely Jelliffe
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In 1916, salon host Mabel Dodge entered psychoanalysis with Smith Ely Jelliffe in New York, recording 142 dreams during her six-month treatment. Her dreams, as well as Jelliffe’s handwritten notes from her analytic sessions, provide an unusual and virtually unprecedented access to one woman’s dream life and to the private process of psychoanalysis and its exploration of the unconscious.
Through Dodge’s dreams, considered together with Jelliffe’s notes, annotations drawn from her memoirs and unpublished writings, and correspondence between Dodge and Jelliffe during the course of her treatment, the reader becomes immersed in the workings of Dodge’s heart and mind, as well as the larger cultural embrace of psychoanalysis and its world-shattering views. Jelliffe’s notes provide a rare glimpse into the process of dream analysis in an early psychoanalytic treatment, illuminating how he and Dodge often embarked upon an examination of each element of the dream as they explored associations to such details as color and personalities from her childhood.
The dreams, with their extensive annotations, provide compelling and original material that deepens knowledge about the early practice of psychoanalysis in the United States, this period in cultural history, and Dodge’s own intricately examined life. This book will be of great interest to psychoanalysts in clinical practice, as well as scholars of the history of psychoanalysis and students of dreams.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgments Foreword by Peter Rudnytsky Prelude by Paul Lippmann Author’s Preface Introduction 01. Mabel Dodge 02. Smith Ely Jelliffe 03. Mabel Dodge in Psychoanalysis with Smith Ely Jelliffe 04. Cast of Characters 05. The Dreams of Mabel Dodge Appendices Appendix A. Mabel Dodge, "Mabel Dodge Writes About the Unconscious," The New York Journal, 1917 Appendix B. Mabel Dodge, "A Game of Cards—Hearts," Psychoanalytic Review, 1918
Patricia R. Everett is a psychologist in private practice in Amherst, Massachusetts and the author of Corresponding Lives: Mabel Dodge Luhan, A.A. Brill, and the Psychoanalytic Adventure in America (Karnac, 2016) and A History Of Having A Great Many Times Not Continued To Be Friends: The Correspondence Between Mabel Dodge and Gertrude Stein, 1911-1934 (University of New Mexico Press, 1996). Since 1983, she has researched the Mabel Dodge Luhan archives at the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University.
"History comes alive, as we are drawn into the dream life of Mabel Dodge, an articulate woman who played a significant role in the history of psychoanalysis in America. It is 1916 and we listen as she recounts dreams and associations to her analyst, Smith Ely Jelliffe, and he responds. Through impeccable scholarship and priceless historical documentation, Patricia Everett contextualizes a psychoanalytic adventure. Unconscious meets conscious, patient meets analyst, and reader meets author, as this fascinating story unfolds. Patricia Everett gives us privileged access to their exciting, spirited, even thrilling interplay as they explore a realm of dreams." - Sandra Buechler, Ph.D., Training and Supervising Analyst at the William Alanson White Institute, author of Psychoanalytic Approaches to Problems in Living (Routledge, 2019)
"If I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes, I’d find it hard to believe that such a book actually exists. Everett presents us with the dreams of Mabel Dodge, recorded during her analysis with Smith Ely Jelliffe, one of the most influential and creative of the first American psychoanalysts. We are whisked, as if by a time machine, deep into a lost world of a century ago. And what is revealed is the inner life of an extraordinary woman, the contours of the American avant-garde, of which she was a central figure, and the workings of psychoanalysis in an early, crucial period of its history." - James William Anderson, Ph.D., Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Northwestern University