Freud attended the lectures of Franz Brentano in Vienna in 1874. Brentano was committed to establishing psychology as an empirical science based on the analysis of intentionality as the defining feature of consciousness. Brentano’s approach excluded the possibility of an unconscious as a realm of intentions unknown to the subject.
Review: How to think more about Sex by Alain de Botton
De Botton is absolutely on point in asserting that neither sex nor love should require us to lie in order to get them. Definitely tell the truth – including to yourself. Yet the way sex and love (affection) fall apart is concerning. How does when bring them together? See http://www.EmpathyLessons.com
Review: A Silvan Tomkins Handbook: Foundations for Affect Theory by Adam J. Frank and Elizabeth A. Wilson
Like Mount Everest, Tomkins’ work is on the border of several gigantic kingdoms, extending from philosophy to psychology, neurology to evolutionary psychology, data rich empirical research to high speculation, phenomenology to an early version of critical theory, behaviorism to personality theory and psychoanalysis.
Freud and empathy: Lost in translation
Freud is explicit about his commitment to empathy. He writes and publishes the following: It is certainly possible to forfeit this first success [in therapy] if one takes up any standpoint other than one of empathy such as moralizing (“Further… Read More ›
A Lazy Person’s Guide to Empathy, the book, now available: Expand empathy in the community and individual today!
Empathy: A Lazy Person’s Guide is a light-hearted look at a significant and engaging matter: how to expand empathy in the individual and the community – and do so without working too hard. The Guide includes twenty eight illustrations by… Read More ›
Online (cyber) therapy: The genie is out of the bottle
Psychotherapy invokes a virtual reality all of its own – even without cyber space. This is especially the case with dynamic psychotherapy that activates forms of transference in which one relates to the therapist “as if” in conversation with a past or future person or reality, the latter not physical present. Indeed, with the exception of being careful not to step in front of a bus while crossing the street on the way to therapy, we are usually over-confident that we know the reality of how our relationships work or what people mean by their communications. This is less the case with certain forms of narrowly focused behavioral therapies, which are nevertheless still more ambiguous than is commonly recognized. Never was it truer that meaning – and emotions such as fear – are generated in the mind of the beholder.
Conversion Disorder: The Human Body is the Best Picture of the Soul
Jamieson Webster writes like a combination of an Exocet missile and a feline feather tease. Webster has previously published on The Life and Death of Psychoanalysis (2012) and with Simon Critchley on Hamlet (Stay Illusion! The Hamlet Doctrine (2014)). Her latest… Read More ›
A Message of Hope and Hard Work: The Brain that Changes Itself
I have been catching up on my reading. Norman Doidge’s book, The Brain that Changes Itself (Penguin, 427pp. ($18)), was published in 2007, now some twelve years ago. This publication occurred towards the beginning of the era of neuro-hype that now… Read More ›
Review: Einfühlung is now an English word: Susan Lanzoni’s Empathy: A History connects the dots between the many meanings of empathy
Short review: two thumbs up. Superb. Definitive. Well written and engaging. Innovative and even ground-breaking. Connects the dots between the different aspects and dimensions of empathy. Sets a new standard in empathy studies. The longer – much longer – review… Read More ›
Review: Mind Fixers: Psychiatry’s Troubled Search for the Biology of Mental Illness by Anne Harrington
In spite of the many patients who have been helped to lead emotionally stable, more productive lives thanks to two generations of psychopharmacological medicines, psychiatry is facing an ongoing challenge of its foundation and legitimacy. That is the take-away in… Read More ›