This couchbuster could be the tipping point for a second Freudian revolution….
The author, a psychiatrist and respected teaching analyst in San Francisco and editor of The Psychoanalytic Quarterly for a decade, has the credentials to make his practical, humane approach credible to his colleagues. He distills his professional and personal experience with a comfortable balance of assurance and humility. Patients will love it, progressive analysts will embrace him, conservatives will distance themselves.
This book should shake up the Freudian establishment, as it empowers patients and their advocates. Historians of psychoanalysis will hear echoes of Otto Rank, Harry Stack Sullivan, Clara Thompson, Carl Rogers, Rollo May, and Irvin Yalom. Here they come home to roost, if not to crow. It takes an Owen Renik to do this, as it took Richard Nixon to open the door to China where others could only wait, or knock in frustration. The ghost of Sigmund Freud will probably nod his approval.
Owen Renik’s slim volume, Practical Psychoanalysis for Therapists and Patients, is written in jargon-free, straightforward language that ensures its accessibility to both patients and therapists. In the jacket notes, Allen Wheelis describes Renik as “a new broom in the littered corridors of psychoanalysis.”
…Sometimes a broom is just a broom. In this case, however, Renik’s broom sweeps away some of the accumulated cobwebs that have obscured the brilliance of Freud’s invention, psychoanalysis. Writing, as he does, from the pinnacle of a career devoted to psychoanalytic practice and scholarship, Owen Renik’s call for mutual engagement, humility, and a bit of practicality is welcome.