The Inner World of Trauma: Archetypal Defences of the Personal Spirit Paperback – Nov 7 1996
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Kalsched's work is highly relevant to the current debate regarding false memory syndrome, the healing of post-traumatic stress, and openings for spiritual emergence out of sometimes life-threatening spiritual emergencies.
Exceptional Human Experience
One of the most outstanding and important contributions to the practice of Jungian analysis (and psychoanalysis altogether) that I have encountered in the last few years.
Mario Jacoby, C. G. Jung Institute, Switzerland
About the Author
Donald Kalsched is a psychoanalyst in private practice and a faculty member of the C.G. Jung Institute, New York.
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From the back cover: In The Inner World of Trauma Donald Kalsched explores the interior world of dream and fantasy images encountered in therapy with people who have suffered unbearable life experiences. He shows how, in an ironical twist of psychical life, the very defensive images designed to protect the self from further injury can become malevolent and destructive, resulting in further trauma for the person. Why and how this happens are among the questions this book sets out to answer. Drawing on detailed clinical material, the author gives special attention to the problems of addiction and psychosomatic disorder, as well as the broad topic of dissociation and its treatment.
Donald Kalsched here brings together Jung's views on trauma and re-visions many classical interpretations of Jungian theory.Read more ›
This whole area is of great interest in clinical circles as we see so many patients with borderline, narcissitic, or schzoid characters. The understanding Kalsched offers, cast in Jungian terms, is invaluable.
The essence of the problem is that due to trauma, and keeping in mind this is almost never a single dramatic event, but rather a series of smaller, more subtle failures over time, a split occurs in the psyche. And a defense system develops to protect that essential core from further injury.
This archetypal defense system is primitive and ruthless in its efforts to guard against further assualt on the Self. It's rather like preferring the agony of the known to the terror of the unknown. Analysis with such patients is often long and difficult and the postive transference of today can rapidly dissolve into hatred and negative transference tomorrow. It requires patience from the analyst and capacity to contain the intense affects that arise.
Kalsched artfully weaves case material, theory, and fairy-tales into a challenging, readable and valuable mix.
This book is the best clinical Jungian book I have read in a long time.
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