As a psychiatric trainee at Harvard in the early 1960's, Dr. Allan Hobson was taught commitment to psychoanalytic theory that was already suspect and is now almost entirely obsolete. Via a series of clinical case reports, the author first apologizes for the arrogant ignorance that he adopted from his teachers and then replaces Freudian doctrine with a scientific alternative called Psychodynamic Neurology. The new approach is solidly grounded in sleep and dream science and restores hypnosis to its rightful place in the therapeutic armamentarium. A central precept of Ego Damage and Repair is that the self and its subjective experience (including symptoms) are natural accompaniments of spontaneous and prenatal brain activation that persists throughout life as REM sleep dreaming. Far from being the nonsense theory that psychoanalytic opponents mock, Psychodynamic Neurology views the unconscious as a hyper-meaningful set of predictions about the world that constitutes a virtual reality model which is continuously updated by personal experience. To showcase the changes in psychotherapeutic practice that are recommended, the self treatment of Dr. Glen Just is described in detail. The book is designed to appeal to all who are dedicated to improving the quality of human life, including their own.
About the Author:
J. Allan Hobson is Professor of Psychiatry Emeritus at Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. He was born in Hartford, Connecticut and obtained an AB degree from Wesleyan University, followed by an MD from Harvard Medical School. He has worked at the Bellevue Hospital, New York, the Massachusetts Mental Health Center, Boston, and the National Institute of Mental Health, Department of Physiology at the University of Lyon, France. He was awarded the Benjamin Rush Gold Medal for Best Scientific Exhibit from the American Psychiatrist Association, and was the recipient of the 1998 Distinguished Scientist Award of the Sleep Research Society. His major research interests are the neurophysiological basis of the mind and behaviour; sleep and dreaming; and the history of neurology and psychiatry. He has contributed numerous articles to scientific journals and chapters to medical textbooks, and is the author or co-author of many books and monographs, including The Dreaming Brain, and Sleep.