Nancy Goodman and Kim Kleinman highlight the path Jacob Arlow forged to help us all have “conversations with the unconscious”. The papers themselves are gems of Arlow’s thinking about the unconscious fantasy compromise formation, the creative mind and the process of listening and interpreting in psychoanalysis. These previously unpublished papers add to his already large tome of work and ignite interest in going back to read his published papers. We discover the timelessness of Jacob Arlow’s profound impact on modern psychoanalysis—theory and practice. Goodman selected papers for her commentaries on topics she finds central: listening, importance of metaphor, film, and the use of one’s subjectivity. She asks that the split so many hold between Kleinian thought and Arlowian thought be mended in order to maintain a concept of a unitary mind full of terrains of unconscious fantasy linked to instinct, trauma, and creativity. She states that our “as/if” divisions between schools of psychoanalysis are defensive against experience of the full brunt of “finding unconscious fantasy”. Kleinman is particularly interested in issues related to training, education, and Kleinian ideas of phantasy in relation to Arlow’s ideas about fantasy. In her introduction, Kim writes about a particular aspect of these papers which is Arlow’s developmental perspectives—fantasy evolves over time.
Arlene Kramer Richards offers a chapter about how she came to know Arlow—in her psychoanalysis, as she speaks to an early childhood memory. The reader can feel the analysis taking place, especially the dialogue and interaction as Arlow and Richards work together exploring, agreeing, and disagreeing.
Kim and Nancy also include a chapter of an interview of Arlene and Arnold Richards about Jacob Arlow. It is a magnificent treat to read the interview as they review their memories of and knowledge about Jacob Arlow.
The book as a whole is a fascinating and compelling in reading the newly discovered papers and
learning about the place of Arlow in psychoanalysis and his foundational thinking about the ubiquitous
presence of unconscious fantasy in the mind and in culture.
About the Editors:
Nancy R. Goodman, PhD, is a training and supervising analyst with the Contemporary Freudian Society, Washington DC, and the IPA. She is faculty in the Wuhan, China Training Program. Many publications reflect her interest in unconscious fantasy, trauma, sadomasochism, and symbolizing. Publications include edited volumes: Finding Unconscious Fantasy in Narrative, Trauma, and Body Pain: A Clinical Guide (2017) (with Paula Ellman); The Power of Witnessing: Reflections, Reverberations, and Traces of the Holocaust (2012) (with Marilyn Meyers). Nancy is founder and Director of www. virtualpsychoanalyticmuseum.org with IPBooks. She maintains a psychoanalytic practice in Bethesda, Maryland.
Kimberly Kleinman is a Life Cycle Training and Supervising Analyst. She has co-edited From Cradle to Couch, Essays in Honor Sylvia Brody and The Plumsock Papers: Giving New Analysts a Voice. She has taught developmental approaches to understanding therapy in various institutes including the Contemporary Freudian Society and the Harlem Family Institute as well as in China.