Personality Development: A Psychoanalytic Perspective

Personality Development: A Psychoanalytic Perspective

Personality Development: A Psychoanalytic Perspective

Personality Development: A Psychoanalytic Perspective

Synopsis

Personality Development is a comprehensive overview of infant observation and personality development. It starts at inter-utero life and goes through to adulthood, focusing on the emotional tasks involved at each stage of development and the interplay of internal processes and external circumstances.Contents include:* intra-uterine life and the experience of birth* babyhood: becoming a person in the family* the toddler and the wider world* the latency period.Using clinical and observational material, it will be of interest to those teaching personality development courses, as well as mental health and child care professionals.

Excerpt

Margaret Rustin

The series of lectures gathered together in this book provide a fine representation of contemporary thinking about the development of the personality, viewed from a psychoanalytic perspective and growing from the clinical practice of the child and adolescent psychotherapist. The editors introduce the book with the most helpful overview. They expound two organising concepts, which serve to link the subsequent material, and which exemplify current preoccupations in psychoanalysis. First, they explore Oedipal themes, the necessary and painful encounter for the child with reality of parental sexuality and the crucial process of becoming aware of that from which we are excluded. The ways in which this triangular constellation reappears as a challenge and an opportunity for development in the process of growing up is linked to the second theme, that of the importance of learning to think about ourselves and others and to acquire a capacity for observation and reflection about our personal lives. These central ideas do indeed inform the detailed exploration of particular periods of development in the life of the child which follows.

It is impressive to realise as one goes along that the book has a sustained inner coherence based on the theoretical paradigm outlined by the editors, and yet succeeds in preserving the individual voices of its authors. The editors have clearly sought to avoid losing the tone of the original lectures, which created such a lively interchange with their audiences, and should also provide much opportunity for thought among readers. The emphasis of the writers is quite varied, and the methods chosen to bring to life the topic of each chapter are diverse. Some writers are more interested in what the traditions of infant and child observation have revealed, some are more drawn to the development of theory,

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