There is a great deal of confusion about psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy, even among practitioners of these methods. One reason is the sheer volume of psychoanalytic psychotherapies currently practised around the world; some very similar, others widely divergent. To help allay this confusion, Kevin Volkan and Vamik Volkan present what lies at the heart of psychoanalysis and demonstrate the different ways this core can manifest in practice.
The authors’ aim is to improve psychoanalytic psychotherapists’ professional identities as well as their approaches to patients. The wide-ranging subjects discussed include therapeutic principles; key psychoanalytic concepts; psychotherapeutic identity; the clinician’s office; making formulations and interpretations; psychosocial development; individual and large-group identity; trauma and transgenerational transmission; dreams and unconscious fantasies; therapeutic play; personality organisations; cultural considerations; and psychoanalysis in organisations and groups.
Volkan and Volkan draw upon their decades of experience of psychoanalysis, biculturalism, and supervision of colleagues in various countries and cultures to create an exceptional textbook to explain psychoanalytic theory clearly. They present compelling case examples to illustrate technical issues that never lose sight of psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy as living professions that continue to develop. This is a must-read for all who want to learn more about psychoanalytic practice and theory.
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.
Vamik Volkan won the 2021 Gradiva Award for his book Large-Group Psychology: Racism, Societal Divisions, Narcissistic Leaders and Who We Are Now .
To view all our titles from Vamik Volkan, click here .
View Kevin Volkan and Vamik Volkan’s last book Schizophrenia: Science, Psychoanalysis and Culture .