Beginning with his treatment of psychotic and manic depressive patients in the 1970s in London, Bollas sought to increase patients psychoanalytic sessions and to work with a team of psychiatrists and social workers who were analytically savvy. When these fragile patients disturbances became heightened, Bollas et co. worked in such a way that none of his patients needed to endure the shock and awe of hospitalization. Now, 40 years later, he has published a book that looks deeply into a way of working that confidently declares psychoanalysis to be THE treatment of choice for the person breaking down. By expanding sessions from five times a week to twice a day seven days a week or from morning to early evening, he discusses with us how breakdowns attended to in this way can become their antithesis: a breakthrough. He is passionate and as always, an intelligent maverick.
This interview promises to give analysts and analysands cause to pause regarding our relationship to the frame and the doing of business as usual. His belief in the human need to find a human other to hear us in our darkest moments, an other especially attuned to unconscious meanings, is convincing. For Bollas, being with a person breaking down demands we change our modus operandi. A breakdown is in a way an opportunity that can be dealed with by psychoanalytic means. To not attend to a breakdown is to put the analysand at risk of simply and devastatingly sealing over the elementary forces that brought the breakdown to the surface in the first place. Always thought provoking, in this interview Bollas weds theory and technique, expanding the reach of psychoanalysis with great creativity.
In this exploration of a radical approach to the psychoanalytical treatment of people on the verge of mental breakdown, Christopher Bollas offers a new and courageous clinical paradigm.
He suggests that the unconscious purpose of breakdown is to present the self to the other for transformative...
Published December 13th 2012 by Routledge
Several thousand years ago Indo-European culture diverged into two ways of thinking; one went West, the other East. Tracing their differences, Christopher Bollas examines how these mentalities are now converging once again, notably in the practice of psychoanalysis.
Creating a freely associated...
Published October 29th 2012 by Routledge
This reader brings together a selection of seminal papers by Christopher Bollas.
Essays such as "The Fascist State of Mind," "The Structure of Evil," and "The Functions of History" have established his position as one of the most significant cultural critics of our time. Also included are...
Published June 8th 2011 by Routledge
In The Evocative Object World Christopher Bollas builds on Freud's account of dream formation, combining it with perceptive clinical, theoretical and cultural insights to show how the psychoanalytical method can provide a rich understanding of what has traditionally been regarded as 'the outside...
Published October 13th 2008 by Routledge
In his latest book Christopher Bollas uses detailed studies of real clinical practice to illuminate a theory of psychoanalysis which privileges the human impulse to question. From earliest childhood to the end of our lives, we are driven by this impulse in its varying forms, and The Infinite...
Published October 13th 2008 by Routledge
Hysteria has disappeared from contemporary culture only insofar as it has been subjected to a repression through the popular diagnosis of 'borderline personality disorder'.In Hysteria the distinguished psychoanalyst Christopher Bollas offers an original and illuminating theory of hysteria that...
Published November 18th 1999 by Routledge
In The Mystery of Things, Christopher Bollas takes the reader right to the heart of psychotherapy, examining the mysterious aspects of the self that are revealed by analysis. The method of enquiry at the heart of psychoanalysis, that is, free association, runs contrary to everything that we are...
Published June 17th 1999 by Routledge
The Work of Unconscious Experience
In Being a Character , Christopher Bollas argued that Freud's vision of the dream process is a model for all unconscious mental experience. In Cracking Up he extends his exploration of the inner world of human experience and suggests that the rhythm of that experience is vital to individual...
Published June 8th 1995 by Routledge
Psychoanalysis and Self Experience
Each person invests many of the objects in his life with his or her own unconscious meaning, each person subsequently voyages through an environment that constantly evokes the self's psychic history. Taking Freud's model of dreamwork as a model for all unconscious thinking, Christopher Bollas...
Published April 15th 1993 by Routledge