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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of How Does Analysis Cure by Heinz Kohut - short answer: Empathy, July 1, 2013
Strengths: The short answer to the question is "empathy." The longer answer is "transmuting internalization," a clumsy phrase necessitated by James Strachey (Freud's translator) using variations of "transformation" and "internalization" in his own essay of the therapeutic effect of psychoanalysis. From a psychoanalytic perspective, Dr. Kohut put empathy on the map. This particular work was assembled by Arnold Goldberg, M.D. and Paul Stephansky (editors), working from an advanced draft by Dr. Kohut, after the latter's untimely death in 1981. The work establishes the connection between phase-appropriate failures of empathy in the analyst and the establishment of psychic structure of the self that enables the person to transform his anxieties, etc. Empathy becomes a tool for the reestablishment of emotional equilibrium on an occurrent as well as dispositional basis. On my reading, it is the non-traumatic breakdown's in empathy and their interpretation and working through that become the basis for structural change (and expansion and "improvement") in the self. Kohut's work in The Restoration of the Self puts empathy at the center of self psychology and includes the claim (only partially justified) that data gathered empathically through vicarious introspection provide a scientific (or at least rigorous) basis for psychoanalysis as a verifiable intellectual discipline.
Weaknesses: Not really a weakness but ... The work is most accessible to those familiar with the self psychology, which itself is accessible as a conversation and (partial) disagreement with Freud. If you are turned off by the amount of sexual dynamics of to be found in Freud's drive theory [a statement that makes almost no sense in our hyper-sexual times], then you will likely find Self Psychology a welcoming option. For Freud (and his colleague Ernest Jones) sex was always the signified, never the signifier. Now sex is just another symbol - when the patient acts out sexually, he is attempting to regain his emotional equilibrium in the face of narcissistic injuries or set backs in the course of life. It is an oversimplification, but a useful one to say: Bad behavior becomes a method - admittedly mal-adapative - of regaining emotional composure when it has been lost for whatever reason. Of course, sex is also just sex in the classic Freudian way too. It is not really fair to either Kohut or Rogers to say the following, but for purposes of an Amazon-reader review, Kohut is Carl Rogers on steroids plus you are allowed to talk about dreams, the past, and even the future! This complex thicket of concepts around empathy, self-object, and narcissism, provides a challenge from the perspective of motivating Kohut's contribution to empathy (which is substantial). Not an easy read, given that Kohut knew he was dying and was unapologetic in expressing his complex thoughts in a complex syntax that borders on "run on" such as this sentence, but a worthwhile one. You get the idea. Newton is supposed to have said, If I have seen further than others, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants who came before me. Never was that truer than in the case of the relationship between Freud and Kohut.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars To understand the "cure" one must understand the meaning..., May 23, 2007
By 
fefl "fefl" (Miami, Florida USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: How Does Analysis Cure? (Hardcover)
This is one of the most difficult of Kohut's books, published posthumously with the assistance of one of the most talented analysts of this period: Arnold Golberg.

The book is a compendium of Kohut's theories and techniques as well as a defense of the innovations he introduced when he wrote "The Analysis" (of the self) and "The Restoration" (of the self, of course).

For anyone who deals with the narcissism of borderline patients, as-if personalities and eating and its disorders I can not think of a better source of enlightment and wisdom than reading: The Analysis, The Restoration, How does (it) cure? and finally, Heinz Kohut: The Making of a Psychoanalyst.

As a lay person you should feel gratified. As a therapist, you should feel reward it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!!, April 21, 2014
By 
Jeff L. Evans (St. Louis, MO USA) - See all my reviews
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I really like this guy. Makes it crystal clear and understandable why this stuff works. Cutting edge analysis of mental conditions.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Looks very good. More later, August 17, 2014
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Just started it. Looks very good. More later.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How does analysis cure., November 18, 2013
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This review is from: How Does Analysis Cure? (Hardcover)
It is a reference for the analyst and the clients . The curing is what provoked the curiosity of both analyst and the clients. This a resources we should all examine and share.
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4 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the cure is not the cause, March 14, 2007
This review is from: How Does Analysis Cure? (Hardcover)
kohut takes the self object theory one further and reinterprets from this lens such great iconographs as the oedipal complex.

compelling read, with a bit of denseness

good for twisting through the labyrinths of the human mind..
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How Does Analysis Cure?
How Does Analysis Cure? by Heinz Kohut (Hardcover - June 15, 1984)
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