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The Hegelian and Expressivist Turns in Psychoanalysis: the View from the United States

Prof Frank Summers

It will be argued that despite wide differences in theoretical perspectives, there are two dominant trends emerging that cross the theoretical differences that divide schools of psychoanalysis. While these tendencies are not universally shared, they are coming to define a contemporary American psychoanalytic approach. The first, which I call the “Hegelian turn, "is the recognition that the self grows and develops only with another who recognizes the self as a subject.

There can be no self without other and therefore self and world are mutually defining. In this way, psychoanalysis is abandoning its Cartesian roots in favour of a view of the self as being inherently in the world. The second turn, related but separate, which I call the expressivity turn, in its essence consists of the recognition that the self has an inborn need to realize its potential in whatever form that may take. 

**NOTE: This presentation is presented via Skype.


Psychotherapy Meets Africa'
7th World Congress on Psychotherapy
25-29 August 2014, Durban, South Africa
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Frank Summers
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Prof Frank Summers

Frank Summers is a professor of clinical psychiatry and the Behavioural Sciences at the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, and Training and Supervising Analyst at the Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis and the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis. He is currently President of the Division of Psychoanalysis of the American Psychological Association.

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