Special Issues

Special issues, organized by guest editors with recognized knowledge in a specific area within the field of psychoanalysis or intersecting with it, are an important feature of the Review. The breadth and richness of the Review’s many Special Issues reflect the complexity of psychoanalysis and its theoretical diversity. Like its vast array of innovative and well-written articles, Special Issues are published on-line in The Psychoanalytic Review pages of the Guilford Publications website (from 2001) and in The Psychoanalytic Review section of pep-web.org. Below are the Special Issues published over the last 10 years:

Psychoanalysis and India
Volume 102, Number 6 (December 2015)
Salman Akhtar, M.D., Issue Editor

“It is to the ethos of the analyst and the patient that this Special Issue of the Journal is devoted. It seeks to demonstrate that while the metapsychological proposals of psychoanalysis (e.g. the system Ucs, pleasure principle, ego defenses, principle of multiple function) are universally applicable, the developmental, psychopathological, and therapeutic contributions of psychoanalysis are open to cultural relativism. The ecology, climate, population density, landscape, religion, politics, and history of where patients and analysts grow up and function as adults affects their ethos and, in turn, the expression and management of their pathos. Freud’s and Klein’s Germanic roots imparted to their theory and practice an austere character which differed from the warmer and more open-hearted theory and practice of Ferenczi and Balint who were of Hungarian origin. This special volume transports such concerns outside of the Western world, however. It focuses upon the people and culture of India and highlights the nuances of psychic development, erotic expression, interpersonal closeness, religiosity, pathological formation, and psychoanalytic technique when either the patient or the analyst (or both) hail from India.” (From the Introduction to the Special Issue by Salman Aktar)

French Psychoanalysis
Volume 102, Number 5 (October 2015)
Edward Emory, Ph.D., Issue Editor

“Psychoanalysis, observed Freud, will have its greatest influence where it meets the most stringent initial resistance. This claim of Freud achieved the status of a truth in France. This issue of the Review explores selected figures representing a range of perspectives within recent developments in psychoanalysis in France. These include the role of desire, viewed from the vertex of Lacan, in clinical work with children, two viewpoints on a pivotal moment in the development of the thought of Andre Green, an examination of Didier’s Anzieu’s concept of skin ego and its application in working with mothers and babies, a review of the concept of après coup that has been focal in recent French analytic thinking, an interview with Jean Laplanche as well as a paper exemplifying his conceptual strategy, and, finally, a paper on the introjective function of dreaming that appears here in English for the first time.” (From the Introduction to the Special Issue by Edward Emery).

The Psychoanalytic Review Centennial Volume
Volume 100, Numbers 1-6 (2013)
Alan Barnett, Ph.D., Editor of The Psychoanalytic Review

The 2013 Centennial Volume is a series of six issues in honor of the 100th Anniversary of The Psychoanalytic Review. The first issue of this series opens with a paper unveiling the entire history of the journal, reflecting the significant events that shaped psychoanalysis and the role of The Psychoanalytic Review in the evolution of psychoanalysis. Each of the six issues includes reprinted seminal papers from the Review relevant to the theme of that issue, along with invited papers from leading psychoanalysts as well as newly submitted papers. In addition, each issue also includes essays written by each of the last five editors of the Review reminiscing about their editorships.

On the Frontiers of Psychoanalysis and Neuroscience: Essays in honor of Eric Kandel
Volume 99, Number 4 (August 2012)
Edith Laufer, Ph.D., Issue Editor

“The objective of this volume is to recognize Dr. Kandel’s inspiration and challenge for the next century of psychoanalysis [to bridge psychoanalysis and biology], and discuss just how the bridge may be built between psychoanalysis and its sister disciplines. . . . As we honor Dr. Kandel at this moment in the history of psychoanalysis, it is also important to observe that the structure and foundation of this bridge is still under construction, that the clinical relevance of extant and future research is increasingly apparent, and that critical voices from within the field raise important and worthy questions. With these caveats, though, it is all too tempting to ask how advances in the neurosciences will mark the progress of psychoanalysis. At the same time, it is our task to ask how and in what ways psychoanalysis may contribute to scientific explorations of the mind. Both sets of questions are explored [by neuroscientists and psychoanalysts] in this special issue.” (From the Preface to the Special Issue by Edith Laufer)

Diversity, Controversy and Innovation in Contemporary Psychoanalysis
Volume 98, Number 5 (October 2011)
Harold Blum, M.D., Issue Editor

“Contemporary psychoanalysis is a very diverse scene; theoretical competition, confusion, internal contradiction, and occasional intercine family feuds has likely contributed to the major decline in academic and public regard and respect for psychoanalysis. . . . Paradoxically, psychoanalysis is also in a state of innovative ferment, no longer so dependent on past authority, greatly liberated from fixation to its early formulations and from idealizing transference to past teachers and their teachings. [Therefore] current psychoanalysis might be regarded as both theoretically destabilized and in eager pursuit of new insights. . . . The trenchant issues of diversity and theoretical pluralism stimulated the formation of a study and research group under the independent auspices of the Psychoanalytic Research and Development Fund. The group, with members from different back¬grounds, institutes, analytic interests, and experience, deliberated monthly for two years. It was a great privilege to organize and participate in our meetings, which were intriguing, stimulating, edifying, and, on the whole, very rewarding for all. What follows in this special issue are original papers by members of the group, representing their individual ideas and response to our divergent and convergent, freewheeling discourse and debate.” (From the Introduction to the Special Issue by Harold Blum)

Foreshadowing the Present: The Legacies of Theodor Reik
Volume 98, Number 2 (April 2011)
Carl Jacobs, D. Sc., L.P., Issue Editor

“. . . the papers in this volume attempt to explore and explicate Reik’s influences on our current dilemmas in the present world of psychoanalysis. . . . Theodor Reik was an extraordinarily popular analytic writer in the 1940s and 1950s, during the golden age of psychoanalysis in the United States, whose 28 books and hundreds of papers have given us the ability to focus on the nature of what psychoanalysis is. He rode the wave by using nontechnical language during a time when the general public was enamored of psychoanalytic thinking throughout the culture.

. . . Since his death [1969], The National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis (NPAP) has celebrated his life and work many times. [Likewise] a conference on May 8, 2010 . . . was originally planned as a celebration of Reik’s hundred twentieth birthday and the fortieth anniversary of his death. The papers in this volume are extensions of presentations at [this] conference; [they] range over the wide influence that Reik has had both on our theory and our praxis, [presenting a] variety of topics from masochism to confession to guilt to listening to technique to love to lust and finally to the problems of training in a diverse and pluralistic psychoanalytic universe. [Also,] these papers may bring us to understand that Theodor Reik’s life and work may very well have contributed to this current state of diversity and pluralism that we find ourselves in today. Nothing less than the persistent self-understanding of a continuing self-analysis will suffice to understand the depth of Reik’s work.” (From the Introduction to the Special Issue by Carl Jacobs)

The Future of the Training Analysis
Volume 97, Number 6 (December 2010)
Sy Coopersmith, Ed.D., Issue Editor

“The Training Analysis (TA) has been an issue of dispute practically since the beginning of psychoanalysis. There are those who have firmly believed that the TA was primarily educational and secondarily personal. Others have regarded the TA as primarily ‘personal’ or ‘therapeutic’ and secondarily as part of the educational process. . . .Through the years there has been continuous disagreement as to the nature of the training analysis, and there have been panels and articles published expressing one or another point of view as to the aim and nature of the TA. . . . This issue of the Psychoanalytic Review is free of any mandate other than to consider the role of the TA as educational and as therapeutic. Authors have been asked to contribute, expressing their own points of view.” (From the Introduction to the Special Issue by Sy Coopersmith)

Politics and Paranoia: The Political Exploitation of Paranoid Anxiety
Volume 97, Number 2 (April 2010)
Alan Roland, Ph.D., Issue Editor

“. . . [P]olitics and paranoia, and the political exploitation of the public’s paranoid anxieties, takes place not only in the United States but also in other countries, and in the past as well. It is a crucial topic that has rarely been explored.”1 This issue of The Psychoanalytic Review was created as a follow-up to a conference on this topic that included workshops as well as interdisciplinary roundtable panel discussions between psychoanalysts and well-known social theorists. Some of the papers discuss the theme of politics and paranoia using “two of the most important psychoanalytic theories of paranoia and paranoid anxiety: British object relations theory based on the work of Melanie Klein, Wilfred Bion, D.W. Winnicott, and Donald Meltzer; and the Lacanian perspective from Paris.”2 Other papers focus on paranoia and paranoid anxiety from the perspectives of recent, historical and cross-cultural politics within America. The concluding paper is integrative and written from a combined psychoanalytic and sociological viewpoint.
1 Roland, A. (2010) Introduction. The Psychoanalytic Review, 97, 191.
2 Roland, A. (2010) Introduction. The Psychoanalytic Review, 97, 191-192.

The Analyst’s Intentions
Volume 96, Number 5 (October 2008)
Alan Barnett, Ph.D., Issue Editor

Today there is a common recognition among practitioners that, regardless of any particular theoretical/technical perspective or individual style and manner of working, purposeful control over what is done in psychoanalytic treatment is less than certain. In light of these factors, can a unifying body of teaching and practice effectively give a full and flexible account of how analysts conduct treatment? The papers in this issue suggest that a focus on the concordance of analysts’ intentions may facilitate a common ground for psychoanalytic approaches to practice, while practitioners can maintain their independence. Four intentions were found to be salient: (1) helping the patient (in whatever manner) progressively explore his or her inner reality for increased emotional well-being; (2) tracking patient responses to therapist interventions to evaluate their on-going effectiveness/impact, especially interventions that may seem ‘intuitive’ and/or be born of a possibly enactive pull; (3) arriving at introspective understanding in the treatment relationship as a primary vehicle to understanding the patient; and (4) attending to psychoanalytic knowledge accumulating from clinical/empirical research. (From the Discussion by Alan Barnett)

Special Issue on Film
Volume 94, Number 6 (December 2007)
Tony Pipolo, Ph.D., Issue Editor

[Usually] movies provoke multiple and various reactions, and when these reactions, whether by a film critic or a psychoanalyst, are argued well, the results can brilliantly illuminate a film. [Yet] Carroll (2004) argues that only certain films lend themselves to psychoanalytic exegesis [especially the ones that] ‘implicitly or explicitly [present] psychoanalytic concepts and imagery’1 [Nevertheless, the essays in this issue critique a great variety of films psychoanalytically. In two essays, the authors not only] extend Carroll’s (2004) argument [but go further to] effectively demonstrate that no critical approach other than psychoanalysis could so satisfyingly unravel the texts of these films. [In other essays, the authors discern different types] of material ripe for psychoanalytic investigation in films. [One author] revive[s] interest in perhaps underappreciated film[s] . . . [while another author] might appear to give undue attention to a minor work, but her careful delineation of the details uncover unforeseen depths. [Still another author] discerns a specific behavioral pattern in three characters from three different films [with] stylistic and cultural differences. [Furthermore, in another two essays, one author] makes a strong case for how primarily Western psychoanalytic ideas can penetrate the dynamics of a Third World African culture, [while the other author] sees a certain group of recent films in terms of how they embody paranoid and schizoid views of the contemporary world. . . . 

[Finally, in the lead essay of this issue, the author] suggests an invaluable resource for psychoanalyzing a filmmaker in the area of nonfiction film. . . . Here are films that seem to have imbibed the perspective, the rhetoric, the psychotherapeutically oriented form of the investigatory impulse, and, in some cases, the stance of the therapeutic or analytic figure himself or herself in the interests of exploring the personal history, unresolved conflicts, and tortured relationships of the filmmaker. [In other words, this essay] may serve to correct what has been, heretofore, the myopic tendency among psychoanalytically oriented film critics to direct attention almost exclusively to the fiction film. Indeed, the degree to which the essays herein explore identity and conflicted notions of the self should be enough to encourage writers with interests in psychoanalysis to give equal attention to nonfiction movies. (From the Introduction to the Special Issue by Tony Pipolo)1 Carroll, N. (2004) Afterword: Psychoanalysis and the horror film. In S. J. Schneider, ed., Horror film and psychoanalysis. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Emmanuel Levinas and Psychoanalysis
Volume 94, Number 4 (August 2007)
Paul Marcus, Issue Editor

“. . . this volume aims to introduce mainstream psychoanalysts to the ‘difficult wisdom concerned with truths that correlate to virtues’1 that constitutes the Levinasian oeuvre. The goal of this volume is to inspire the beginning of a serious conversation between Levinasians and Levinasian-inspired scholars, on the one hand, and mainstream psychoanalysts, on the other, on the subject of ethicality, as Levinas radically and uniquely defines ethics: ‘ethics is no longer a simple moralism of rules which decree what is virtuous. It is the original awakening of an I responsible for the other, the accession of my person to the uniqueness of the I called and elected to responsibility for the other’2. By embracing a Levinasian conception of ethics, and the mode of ethical living that it implies, or at least opening up the intellectual space to consider Levinas’s ‘disruptive wisdom’, perhaps psychoanalysis can become a more compelling, ethically animated, life- and identity-defining narrative of the human condition and form of psychotherapy.” (From the Introduction to the Special Issue by Paul Marcus)
1 Levinas, E. (1990). Nine Talmudic readings (A. Aronowicz, trans.). Bloomington: Indiana University Press, p. 275. 2Levinas, E. (1969). Totality and infinity: An essay on exteriority (A. Lingus, trans.). Pittsburgh, Penn.: Duquesne University Press. p. 182.

Special Issue on the Internet
Volume 94, Issue 1 (February 2007)
Michael Eigen and Evan Malater, Issue Editors

“In this special issue of The Psychoanalytic Review, we consider many unsettling questions about the Internet’s influence on our sense of reality along with implications for psychoanalytic thought and practice. . . . Each of these articles leaves us with a sense of the unique relationship that the writer has forged with the cyberspace. Some face it warily, like a dangerous drug to be studied with grudging admiration and caution, while others speak ecstatically, thoroughly immersed in the experience, as if seeking to allow the Internet to speak with its own voice. We see that the Internet is a land of misfits and social outcasts, but also that it is a model for a creatively self-regulating community. We see that cyberspace is a funhouse mirror, trapping the wary and vulnerable in pseudo-reality, but we also read that cyberspace offers our greatest possibility for freeing ourselves from the mirror’s narcissistic spell, facilitating creative fantasy by today’s astute virtual subject. Along with contradictory viewpoints, we find very different ideas on the extent to which cyberculture should be seen as posing basic challenges to current psychoanalytic thought and practice. Some authors ask what psychoanalysis can make of the Internet, while others ask what the Internet has made and will continue to make of psychoanalysis.” (from the Introduction by Issue Co-Editor Evan Malater)

Fundamentalism and Terrorism
Volume 93, Number 2 (April 2006)
Michael Eigen, Issue Editor

“The essays in this issue explore processes that help make up our violent psyche and violent world. They are especially helpful in that they include moving and stimulating portrayals of subjective states while exploring more general principles. These are papers the authors are passionate about. You feel their voice, their sense of urgency, and their process of communication. They care about the issues at hand, issues very real for our world, for our lives. We no longer expect the last word or anything final and definitive. . . . There is much emphasis on groups, society, and infrastructures of cultures and individuals. Yet it also becomes clear that no matter how much greater social issues are addressed (and should be addressed), without sober and inspired work with the infrastructure of psychic life—our wayward beings, our inner tyrant’s will to power (dialectics of power and vulnerability)—we will remain outside of the place terror is nurtured and imagine it is elsewhere. It is more dangerous than ever to postpone recognition of threads that unite individual, familial, and societal difficulties. It will take a leap of courage, faith, and critical thought to keep on beginning.” (From the Introduction to the Special Issue by Michael Eigen)

Politics and Psychoanalysis
Volume 92, Number 6 (December 2005)
Sy Coopersmith, Ed.D., Issue Editor

“Generally, politics is defined as the science of government or the policies and aims of a government, of a nation, or of a state (New Webster’s Dictionary, 1981). Specifically, it may also be seen as ‘the plotting or scheming of those seeking personal power, glory, position, or the like’ (New Webster’s Dictionary, 1981). For the purposes of this special edition of The Psychoanalytic Review, the concept of ‘politics’ is considered as ‘the abuse of power’. This can take place in social structures and, as such, be understood from a psychoanalytic perspective. It can also take place in psychoanalytic organizations as well as in the analytic process. This issue of the Review attempts to provide a picture of how politics is pervasive in psychoanalytic organizations as well as in the analytic room. In this regard, we assume a particular ethic as analysts; we assume an ethic of ‘goodness’ and an attempt to understand when and why this ethic fails. We can then see how the abuse of power conflicts with the central ethic of psychoanalysis.” (From the Prologue to the Special Issue by Sy Coopersmith)