Preface [chapter]

1989 Reshaping the Psychoanalytic Domain  
The protagonists of this study, Melanie Klein, W. Ronald D. Fairbairn, and Donald W. Winnicott, are sometimes referred to as object relations theorists, sometimes as the British or English School. (Fairbairn was born and lived in Scotland, so "English" cannot be correct.) Under one name or another, their work has become familiar to clinicians in the United States and elsewhere. But it has been taken up by them in piecemeal fashion without an adequate appreciation of its internal coherence. It
more » ... this coherence that I want to establish, and in so doing, I hope to elucidate the strand of psychoanalytic theory which constitutes at once the soundest and the most thoroughgoing revision of Freud. Two books, both published after my own was already launched, bear mentioning. The first is Phyllis Grosskurth's Melanie Klein: Her World and Her Work; her subtitle conveys her aim. 1 Grosskurth is particularly strong on psychoanalytic politics in London, and my first chapter, which serves as a prolegomenon to my main argument, benefited greatly from her meticulous investigations. The second book close to mine is Jay Greenberg and Stephen Mitchell's Object Relations in Psychoanalytic Theory. 2 With object relations as their principal theme, they compare disparate and dissonant traditions in psychoanalysis. To this end, they cross-examined the theorists about matters they, the authors, considered relevant (while failing to pursue "evidence" about what the theorists themselves thought they were doing). Thus Greenberg and Mitchell have produced something of a compendium and, for that very reason, a useful contribution. Despite unavoidable overlaps-principally in materials exploited, published and unpublished alike-each book has its distinctive agenda. Mine is as follows. Taking Freud's overarching paradigms as the point Ix PREFACE
doi:10.1525/9780520342156-001 fatcat:qz7lgc3gk5bofkrcooubm3p2fa