Psychoanalysis: Telepathy, Gossip and/or Science?

  • John Forrester
Part of the Communications and Culture book series (COMMCU)


Some brief introductory remarks are in order to place my chapter in the context of this series, and also to give some idea of the links between the enigmatic words in my title. I shall not be applying cultural theory to psychoanalysis, nor shall I be deriving cultural theory from psychoanalysis. Rather, I shall be giving a psychoanalytic account of the culture of psychoanalysis: a psychoanalysis of psychoanalysis. I should also add that when I use the term ‘psychoanalysis’, I am referring to a discursive practice — a practice guided by and infused with theory: the practice of two people talking to one another, within the rules laid down in order to define that practice.


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  1. 3.
    P. D. James, A Taste for Death ( Faber amp; Faber, London, 1986 ), p. 258.Google Scholar
  2. 12.
    J. M. Masson, The Assault on Truth (Chatto amp; Windus, London, 1984 ).Google Scholar
  3. 14.
    See Stanley L. Olinick, ‘The gossiping psychoanalyst’, International Review of Psycho-Analysis vol. 7 (1980), pp. 439–45. This passage from p. 439.Google Scholar
  4. 25.
    Phyllis Grosskurth, Melanie Klein. Her world and her work (Hodder amp; Stoughton, London, 1986), esp. pp. 95–100.Google Scholar
  5. 28.
    See Elizabeth Roudinesco, Histoire de la psychanalyse en France. 2, 19251985 ( Seuil, Paris, 1986 ), pp. 135–6.Google Scholar
  6. 29.
    Didier Anzieu, Freud’s Self-Analysis, trans. Peter Graham ( Hogarth Press and the Institute of Psycho-analysis, London, 1986 ).Google Scholar

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© John Forrester 1991

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  • John Forrester

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