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Ordinary People and Extra-ordinary Protections: A Post-Kleinian Approach to the Treatment of Primitive Mental States (The New Library of Psychoanalysis) [Kindle Edition]

Judith L. Mitrani , Jim Grotstein

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  • Print ISBN-10: 0415241642
  • Print ISBN-13: 978-0415241649
  • Edition: 1
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Book Description

Many people come to analysis appearing quite 'ordinary' on the surface. However, once below that surface, we often come into contact with something quite unexpected: 'extra-ordinary protections' created to keep at bay any awareness of deeply traumatic happenings occurring at some point in life.

Judith Mitrani investigates the development and the function of these protections, allowing the reader to witness the evolution of the process of transformation, wherein defensiveness steadily mutates into communication.

She lucidly and artfully weaves detailed clinical with a variety of analytic concepts, and her original notions - including 'unmentalized experience' and its expression in enactments; 'adhesive pseudo-object relations' and the way in which this contracts and compares with normal and narcissistic object relations - provide valuable tools for understanding the infantile transference/countertransference and for the refinement of our technique with primitive mental states.

Ordinary People and Extra-Ordinary Protections will prove stimulating and accessible in its style and substance to a broad analytic readership, from the serious student of psychoanalysis to the most seasoned professional.

Editorial Reviews


'Judith Mitrani's latest work beautifully illuminates some incompletely explored areas of psychoanalytic thinking... Throughout this work we become impressed with the presence of a versatile and innovative observer, thinker, clinician, and integrator with an unusual range of knowledge. Dr Mitrani's is a new, valuable, and most welcome voice in psychoanalysis.' - James S. Grotstein, North American Vice President, International Psychoanalytical Association

'Her clinical approach is to search for the earliest trauma - postulated around containment and intrauterine and skin-to-skin organization of experience - and she will link them to the immediacy of intense clinical (that is, transferential and countertransferential) states with a conceptual language that is commensurate to that suffering. And here Mitrani doesn't flinch; she takes on the "cascading breakdown- in both analyst
and analysand .. in the face of extreme emotional turbulence".'
- Alfred Margulies, JAPA vol 50 No 3, 2002

'The overriding quality of this book is its transparency, its lucid quality of discourse about the author's work, and the clear presentation of the clinical process she sets going. This leaves the reader always knowing exactly where he/she is with the author's thinking, and in a position to feel oneself there in the room with the analyst and her patients.' - R.D. Hinshelwood, IJPA 2002

Mitrani offers us an extraordinary view of an intensely gifted clinician, working at the very edge of what can be felt and thought analytically, As such, this book is remarkable - George Pidgeon, from The Journal of Critical Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, (Vol 7, No 3) Autumn 2007



About the Author

Judith L. Mitrani is a Training and Supervising analyst at both The Psychoanalytic Center of California and the Los Angeles Institute and Society for Psychoanalytic Studies. She is author of A Framework for the Imaginery: Clinical Explorations in Primitive States of Being and the co-editor (with Dr. Theodore Mitrani) of the book Encounters with Autisitic States: A Memorial Tribute to Frances Tustin.

Product Details

  • File Size: 453 KB
  • Print Length: 201 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0415241650
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 4 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (March 4, 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000SH2LRA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #403,097 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Dr. Mitrani is a Fellow of the International Psycho-Analytical Association and is a Training and Supervising Analyst at the Psychoanalytic Center of California. Trained in the tradition of British object relations psychoanalysis, which is unusual in the United States, Dr. Mitrani has contributed to building a bridge between contemporary Kleinian/Bionian thought and some essential aspects of American Intersubjectivity, considering the analytic process as a two person psychology concerned with the enduring effects of early pre- and post-natal experience upon the development of the individual.
In his plenary address to the American Psychoanalytic Association in 1995, Dr. Theodore Jacobs introduced the work of Dr. Mitrani as being on the "cutting edge of psychoanalytic-clinical research." Her concepts of 'unmentalized experience', 'adhesive pseudo-object relations', and her explication of the analytic process of 'taking the transference', have been instrumental in refining the understanding of and our therapeutic work with patients who are difficult to reach.
Since 1992 Dr. Mitrani has published the three books and many papers in both American and International peer-reviewed journals. She also has several publication in French, German, Hebrew, Portuguese, Japanese and Spanish language journals and has taught, supervised and presented papers in a number of countries as well as here in the United States. Dr. Mitrani's development as an analyst was organically rooted in personal connections with three analysts who had an early influence upon both the style and substance of her own work. Early in her professional development she became a close friend of Dr. Harold Boris of Boston, was mentored by Dr. Joyce McDougall of Paris, and became a student and intimate exponent of Mrs. Frances Tustin, the world renowned child psychotherapist and innovative contributor to the technique of psychoanalytic treatment of autistic states in children and adults in England. It was Tustin's work that would resonate most closely with Mitrani's natural inclinations and intuitions.So it was that, shortly after Tustin died in November of 1994, Dr. Mitrani founded the International Frances Tustin Memorial Trust and went on to establish an Annual Frances Tustin Memorial Prize and Lectureship, which has been awarded to twelve analytic workers from Brazil, Israel, Italy, England, France and the United States. Dr. Mitrani's tireless efforts to insure the expansion and extension of Tustin's vital body of work, through tireless work raising funds, conducting workshops wherever asked and teaching across the country and around the world are ongoing. In 2003, Dr. Mitrani, with the help of local members of The Frances Tustin Memorial Trust, began to organize larger international gatherings so that those outside the United States could more readily participate in and learn from a the study of, new developments in and dialogues regarding this vital area of psychoanalytic thinking and practice. Since then, three-day conferences have been held in England, France, Germany, Israel and Italy with attendance upward of 300. ALready in the planning are Conferences in Sydney Australia and Boston, MA. These gatherings are marked by the dedication of the presenters and participants alike, in that all presenters do so with no financial compensation or reimbursement: a standard for which Mitrani was the role model. Thus, fees for attendance of these events could remain relatively modest, especially for students, and the FTM Prize could continue to be funded through the Trust, which continues to inspire and encourage the written accounts of psychoanalytic work with autistic states in analysands of all ages and with children diagnosed on the autistic spectrum.
Dr. Mitrani has supervised and lectured in The United States, Canada, Europe, Japan, Australia and the Middle East on the subject of primitive mental states and technique and she teaches analytic candidates in IPA Institutes other than her own when asked, as well a and non-IPA-affiliated institutes. Dr. Mitrani has also been active in the administrative and organizational aspects of psychoanalytic training. While she was herself still a candidate in training, Dr. Mitrani founded the public relations, fund raising and newsletter/publications committees at her own institute of origin (PCC), as well as the Melanie Klein Lectureship, which has been presented now for over twenty consecutive years in Los Angeles.
Dr. Mitrani is not only a distinguished author, but is also dedicated to helping others to write about their clinical experience as well. In this regard, since her certification in 1991 and her appointment to the Faculty of her alma mater, she was instrumental in establishing a writer's workshop to help both candidates and faculty to hone their writing skills, to organize their thoughts, and to begin to communicate their clinical experience to others. She has also served on the North American Editorial Board of the International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, The Journal of Primitive Mental States and The Israel Journal of Psychoanalysis. Dr. Mitrani is currently also working with her husband Dr. Theodore Mitrani organizing and editing and translating a two volume book, Frances Tustin Today, for the New Library of Psychoanalysis.
Dr. Mitrani spoke at the International Centennial Conference on the Work of W. R. Bion, and has taught and supervised both Faculty and Students at the University of Tel-Aviv in Israel, the University of Haifa and Bar-Ilan University in Israel and The University of Caen in France. She has presented papers at the American Academy, the American Psychoanalytic Association and at The International Association of Psycho-Analysis.
Consistent with her interest in primitive mental states, Dr. Mitrani has always treated patients who might not have had the opportunity for analysis; patients whose emotional disabilities have impaired their functioning and who, at least in the early years of the treatment, require considerable financial accommodation.


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