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Schizophrenia: Science, Psychoanalysis and Culture
Kevin Volkan and Vamik D. Volkan
Phoenix Publishing House / Softcover / Feb 2022
9781800131200 (ISBN-10: 1800131208)
reg price: $60.50 our price: $ 57.48
240 pages
In Stock (Ships within one business day)

Two leading experts, one with a broad range of experience of institutional settings and cultures using psychodynamic, behavioral, and psychopharmacological modalities, the other an experienced psychoanalyst, bring together the complex history, causes, and treatments of schizophrenia in an easy-to-read and academically rigorous text.


Kevin Volkan and Vamik Volkan present a comprehensive study of schizophrenia using a psychoanalytic lens on the existing interdisciplinary research. Over the last seventy years, mainstream research on the causes, prevalence, and treatment of schizophrenia has greatly diverged from psychoanalytic thinking. However, the emergence of the field of neuropsychoanalysis brings hope that psychoanalytic metapsychology and clinical theory may once again provide valuable insight into understanding schizophrenia.

Psychoanalytic treatment may not be appropriate for many sufferers but psychoanalysis does provide insight to inform and improve treatment. It can also illuminate what aspects of schizophrenia are common across cultures, where they present unique characteristics, and just how cultural variations occur. For any future improvement in understanding and treating schizophrenia, the cultural underpinnings and expressions of schizophrenic illness need to be made clear.

For clinicians in the field, the authors' aim is to deepen insight and promote the use of psychotherapy and integrated treatments, while increasing sensitivity to cultural variations in schizophrenic disease. Accordingly, this book is divided into four sections. The first gives a brief overview and outline of the mainstream understanding of schizophrenia. The second drills down to focus on general psychoanalytic ideas about schizophrenia, culminating with a focus on problems with early object relations. The third looks at how psychoanalytic treatment can be successful in some cases. The fourth and final part discusses how views of the disorder and the disorder itself are affected by culture.

The authors hope to generate insight and understanding of schizophrenic disorders which could lead to new approaches to treating and possibly preventing schizophrenia. It is a must-read for all clinicians and trainees working in the field and presents insightful ideas to anyone with an interest in the subject.

Table of Contents:

About the authors
About this book

Part I: Schizophrenia: Epidemiology, causes, neurobiology, pathophysiology

Chapter 1: Introduction and overview of schizophrenia
Chapter 2: Causes of schizophrenia
Chapter 3: Neurobiology of schizophrenia
Chapter 4: Brain structure and schizophrenia
Chapter 5: Cognition and schizophrenia
Chapter 6: Social-cognitive and emotional recognition impairment in schizophrenia
Chapter 7: Treatment of schizophrenia
Chapter 8: Non-psychodynamic therapeutic approaches to treating schizophrenia
Chapter 9: Recovery from schizophrenia
Chapter 10: Prevention of schizophrenia

Part II: The psychoanalytic metapsychology of schizophrenia

Chapter 11: Neuropsychoanalysis and schizophrenia
Chapter 12: Early psychoanalytic approaches to understanding schizophrenia
Chapter 13: A review of object relations and severe psychopathology
Chapter 14: Schizophrenic etiology and organismal panic
Chapter 15: The infantile psychotic self
Chapter 16: Flawed ingredients
Chapter 17: Fates of infantile psychotic selves

Part III: Psychoanalytic approaches to treating schizophrenia

Chapter 18: Psychodynamic approaches to treating schizophrenia
Chapter 19: Psychoanalytic treatment of adult schizophrenia
Chapter 20: Fusing-disconnecting and internalization-externalization cycles
Chapter 21: Development of a steady identification with the "good" analyst
Chapter 22: "Sophisticated" identifications and externalizations
Chapter 23: Permanent elimination of the infantile psychotic self
Chapter 24: Oedipal issues and superego identifications

Part IV: Cultural elements in schizophrenia

Chapter 25: Schizophrenia and culture
Chapter 26: Causes and beliefs about schizophrenia
Chapter 27: Object relations and culture
Chapter 28: Culture-bound schizophrenia
Chapter 29: Psychoanalysis and syndromes of culture-bound schizophrenia

Last words

About the Authors:

Kevin Volkan, EdD, PhD, MPH is a founding faculty member and Professor of Psychology at California State University Channel Islands, where he researches and teaches courses on psychopathology and atypical behaviors, personality theory, as well as Nazi Germany, and Eastern philosophy. Dr. Volkan also currently serves on the Graduate Medical Education faculty for the Community Memorial Hospital System in Ventura CA, where he teaches and conducts research with medical residents, and as an adjunct faculty member for California Lutheran University's clinical psychology doctorate program. He holds doctorates in clinical and quantitative psychology, is a graduate of the Harvard School of Public Health, and a former Harvard Medical School faculty member and administrator. Dr. Volkan is considered to be an expert on extreme psychopathologies and has testified before the United States Senate on pathological and dangerous fetishes. He has made numerous appearances on television, radio, and podcasts as a psychological expert.

Dr. Volkan's clinical training and experience is in psychoanalytic psychotherapy, though he also has experience using a wide variety of other modalities in clinical practice. He has practised clinical psychology as a staff psychologist in a state hospital and in private practice. Dr. Volkan's clients included a diverse population of people representing a wide variety of socioeconomic strata and psychological distress. He has worked with people suffering from drug addiction, neuroses, and personality disorders as well individuals suffering from autism, organic brain injury, and schizophrenia. Dr. Volkan was awarded the Sustained Superior Accomplishment Award from the State of California for his clinical work. His current practice is centered around psychodynamic embodied dreamwork.

Dr. Volkan is the author of Dancing Among the Maenads: The Psychology of Compulsive Drug Use, which is one of the few psychoanalytic works examining drug addiction. He has also published a number of papers on psychopathology as well as on psychoanalysis and culture. His current publications include works on delusional misidentification syndromes, hoarding, narcissism, and demonic possession.

Vamik Volkan, MD, DFLAPA, received his medical education at the School of Medicine, University of Ankara, Turkey. He is an emeritus professor of psychiatry at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville and an emeritus training and supervising analyst at the Washington Psychoanalytic Institute, Washington, DC. In 1987, Dr Volkan established the Center for the Study of Mind and Human Interaction (CSMHI) at the School of Medicine, University of Virginia. CSMHI applied a growing theoretical and field-proven base of knowledge to issues such as ethnic tension, racism, large-group identity, terrorism, societal trauma, immigration, mourning, transgenerational transmissions, leader-follower relationships, and other aspects of national and international conflict. A year after his 2002 retirement, Dr Volkan became the Senior Erik Erikson Scholar at the Erikson Institute of the Austen Riggs Center, Stockbridge, Massachusetts and he spent three to six months there each year for ten years.

In 2006, he was Fulbright/Sigmund Freud-Privatstiftung Visiting Scholar of Psychoanalysis in Vienna, Austria. Dr Volkan holds honorary doctorate degrees from Kuopio University (now called the University of Eastern Finland), Finland; from Ankara University, Turkey; and the Eastern European Psychoanalytic Institute, Russia. He was a former president of the Turkish-American Neuropsychiatric Society, the International Society of Political Psychology, the Virginia Psychoanalytic Society, and the American College of Psychoanalysts. Among many the awards he received are the Nevitt Sanford Award, Elise M. Hayman Award, L. Bryce Boyer Award, Margaret Mahler Literature Prize, Hans H. Strupp Award, the American College of Psychoanalysts' Distinguished Officer Award for 2014, and the Mary S. Sigourney Award for 2015. He received the Sigmund Freud Award given by the city of Vienna, Austria in collaboration with the World Council of Psychotherapy. He also was honoured on several occasions by being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize with letters of support from twenty-seven countries. Dr Volkan is the author, co-author, editor, or co-editor of more than fifty psychoanalytic and psychopolitical books, including Enemies on the Couch: A Psychopolitical Journey through War and Peace. Currently Dr Volkan is the president emeritus of the International Dialogue Initiative (IDI), which he established in 2007. He continues to lecture nationally and internationally.

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