This book skillfully brings developments in psychotherapy up to date. Dr. Gertrude Blanck writes with a clarity and simplicity that can only be acquired with discerning and seasoned expertise. Extracting from the proliferation of complex and often contradictory popular schools of thought, she presents what is essential and fundamental in clinical work today. In a question-and-answer format, illustrated with patient-therapist dialogue, the practice of psychotherapy is organized, explained, and made accessible. Dr. Blanck addresses a broad range of topics including how to design the treatment, build psychic structure, learn from symptoms and defenses, formulate a developmental diagnosis, teach parenting skills, and know when medication is desirable. Her lively and very practical use of a model case demonstrates the application of her thinking to clinical technique and interventions. An excellent teaching resource, this book is ideal for practicing clinicians, supervisors, residents, and graduate students in clinical psychology and social work.
Dr. Blanck draws from her extensive experience as a clinician, teacher, and writer with this wide-ranging gem. She concisely reviews the evolution of psychoanalytic psychology, and demonstrates ways to apply an understanding of character structure in the diagnosis and treatment of the neuroses and borderline states. As a contributor to the mainstream of psychoanalysis, she combines accepted practices and her own innovative ideas useful to both new and seasoned therapists. She ends with a hopeful look at the future of psychoanalytic psychotherapy. The annotated bibliography gives helpful, concise summaries of the references. There is much to think about in this book; it should be in every therapist's hand.
— David F. Freeman M.D., training analyst, University of North Carolina-Duke University Psychoanalytic Education Program
In this rich, scholarly, highly readable primer, Gertrude Blanck brings to the fore the findings of those first generation ego psychologists whose contributions serve as the foundation for contemporary psychodynamic theory. Through clinical examples, she demonstrates how their contributions, integrated with more recent development, enrich our current treatment of a wide range of patients. Readers will welcome Dr. Blanck's timely thoughts about primary prevention, and the application of her approach in today's managed-care world. This book reads like a mini-encyclopedia of analytic thought. It will be an invaluable tool for students, teachers, and practitioners.
— Joyce Edward, C.S.W., co-editor, Fostering Healing and Growth: A Psychoanalytic Social Work Approach
This is a solid book for the learning and teaching of the dynamic psychotherapies. It can well serve students, practitioners, and teachers alike. Opening with a sonnet of Shakespeare's that extols the timeless blend of love and object constancy, Dr. Blanck weaves a fusion of contemporary ego psychology and object relations theory into her superordinate, inclusive developmental perspective. Successfully eschewing facile solutions of partial theories, the author provides pithy clinical examples throughout to demonstrate her careful and sensitive application of enduring psychoanalytic principles. This book adds an invaluable resource for the scientific background of psychotherapy, much needed in the period ahead.
— Leo Rangell, M.D., honorary president, International Psychoanalytic Association
About the Author:
Gertrude Blanck holds a Ph.D. from New York University. She has had extensive psychoanalytic training and has been in the private practice of psychoanalysis and psychotherapy since 1950. At a time when little was known about the technique of psychotherapy, Dr. Blanck established the Institute for the Study of Psychotherapy where she, along with a distinguished faculty, trained hundreds of psychotherapists. An esteemed supervisor and seminar leader, she has lectured in the major cities of the United States, Europe, China, and the Philippines. She is co-author of the noted trilogy Ego Psychology, Ego Psychology II, and Beyond Ego Psychology. Dr. Blanck is past president of the Institute for Psychoanalytic Training and Research, Distinguished Lydia Rapaport Visiting Professor at Smith College, and recipient of the Margaret S. Mahler Memorial Award. She has been named to the Hunter College Hall of Fame.