The Relational Perspectives Book Series (RPBS) publishes books that grow out of or contribute to the relational tradition in contemporary psychoanalysis. The term relational psychoanalysis was first used by Greenberg and Mitchell (1983) to bridge the traditions of interpersonal relations, as developed within interpersonal psychoanalysis and object relations, as developed within contemporary British theory. But, under the seminal work of the late Stephen Mitchell, the term relational psychoanalysis grew and began to accrue to itself many other influences and developments. Various tributaries—interpersonal psychoanalysis, object relations theory, self psychology, empirical infancy research, and elements of contemporary Freudian and Kleinian thought—flow into this tradition, which understands relational configurations between self and others, both real and fantasied, as the primary subject of psychoanalytic investigation.
We refer to the relational tradition, rather than to a relational school, to highlight that we are identifying a trend, a tendency within contemporary psychoanalysis, not a more formally organized or coherent school or system of beliefs. Our use of the term relational signifies a dimension of theory and practice that has become salient across the wide spectrum of contemporary psychoanalysis. Now under the editorial supervision of Lewis Aron and Adrienne Harris with the assistance of Associate Editors Steven Kuchuck and Eyal Rozmarin, the Relational Perspectives Book Series originated in 1990 under the editorial eye of the late Stephen A. Mitchell. Mitchell was the most prolific and influential of the originators of the relational tradition. He was committed to dialogue among psychoanalysts and he abhorred the authoritarianism that dictated adherence to a rigid set of beliefs or technical restrictions. He championed open discussion, comparative and integrative approaches, and he promoted new voices across the generations.
Included in the Relational Perspectives Book Series are authors and works that come from within the relational tradition, extend and develop the tradition, as well as works that critique relational approaches or compare and contrast it with alternative points of view. The series includes our most distinguished senior psychoanalysts along with younger contributors who bring fresh vision.
Psychoanalysis, Law, and Society
Psychoanalysis as an Ethical Process
The Cut and the Building of Psychoanalysis: Volume II: Sigmund Freud and Sándor Ferenczi
Neil J. Skolnick
August 02, 2019
In Relational Psychoanalysis and Temporality, Neil J. Skolnick traces his personal evolution from a graduate student through to his career as a relational psychoanalyst. Skolnick uniquely shares his publications and presentations that span his professional career, weaving in issues around...
June 14, 2019
Creativity and the Erotic Dimensions of the Analytic Field centers on the mutually reinforcing relationship between erotic and creative energies. Erotic embodiment is given context within a contemporary model of clinical process based in analytic field theory and highlighting Winnicott. Dianne...
Plinio Montagna, Adrienne Harris
May 23, 2019
Psychoanalysis, Law, and Society explores the connections between psychoanalysis and law, arguing that these are required not only for conceptual or theoretical needs in both fields, but also for the vast range of practical implications and possibilities their association enables. The book is...
E. Virginia Demos
March 01, 2019
The Affect Theory of Silvan Tomkins for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy explores central issues in current clinical work, using the theories put forward by Silvan Tomkins and presenting them in detail, as well as integrating them with the most up-to-date neuroscience findings and infancy research,...
Robert P. Drozek
February 20, 2019
What role does ethics play in the practice of psychoanalysis and psychotherapy? For most of its history, psychoanalysis has viewed ethics as a "side issue" in clinical work—occasionally relevant, but not central to therapeutic action. In Psychoanalysis as an Ethical Process, Robert Drozek...
Pamela Cooper-White, Felicity Brock Kelcourse
February 06, 2019
Sabina Spielrein stands as both an important and tragic figure—misunderstood or underestimated by her fellow analysts (including Jung and Freud) and often erased in the annals of psychoanalytic history. Her story has not only been largely forgotten, but actively (though unconsciously) repressed as...
January 17, 2019
The Cut and the Building of Psychoanalysis Volume II explores how the unformulated trauma associated with surgery performed on Emma Eckstein’s genitalia, and the hallucinations that Eckstein experienced, influenced Freud’s self-analysis, oriented his biological speculations, and significantly...
Steven Seidman, Alan Frank
November 06, 2018
Debate over gender and especially the lives of men is currently at a fever pitch, particularly in the United States. New perspectives that capture the complexity of men and a rapidly changing gender landscape are therefore critical today. Psychoanalysis and Contemporary American Men challenges...
Sabina Spielrein, Ruth I. Cape, Raymond Burt
August 01, 2018
Sabina Spielrein’s writings explore the burning topics in the early days of psychoanalysis while providing insight into the culture of the time and her own personal struggles. After a comprehensive historical and biographical introduction to Spielrein by John Launer, The Essential Writings of...
Lewis Aron, Sue Grand, Joyce A. Slochower
June 05, 2018
Self-examination and self-critique: for psychoanalytic patients, this is the conduit to growth. Yet within the field, psychoanalysts haven’t sufficiently utilized their own methodology or subjected their own preferred approaches to systematic and critical self-examination. Across theoretical...
Lewis Aron, Sue Grand, Joyce A. Slochower
June 05, 2018
Decentering Relational Theory: A Comparative Critique invites relational theorists to contemplate the influence, overlaps, and relationship between relational theory and other perspectives. Self-critique was the focus of De-Idealizing Relational Theory. Decentering Relational Theory pushes critique...
April 18, 2018
Psychoanalysts increasingly find themselves working with patients and states that are not amenable to verbal and dialogic engagement. Such patients are challenging for a psychoanalytic approach that assumes that the patient relates in the verbal realm and is capable of reflective function. Both the...