Analysts in the Trenches
Streets, Schools, War Zones
Edited by Bruce Sklarew, Stuart W. Twemlow, Sallye M. Wilkinson
Routledge – 2004 – 352 pages
The horrific events of 9/11 and its sequelae have reinforced what thoughtful analysts have long known: that they have a responsibilty to respond to the complex social and emotional issues arising in their communities - to function, that is, as "community psychoanalysts." Analysts in the Trenches vividly illustrates what socially engaged analysts can offer to violent and disturbed communities. Contributors bring analytic expertise to bear on the emotional sequelae to violence, including sexual and physical abuse; to multiple and traumatic losses; and to learning inhibitions. Thay also explore and devise community responses to the scapegoating of classes and groups, to homelessness, and to variations in family structures. This volume provides heartening testimony to the relevance of psychodynamic thinking in the post-9/11 world and will spur professional readers to develop their own programs of community involvement.
"What I find most appealing is that the contributors to Analysts in the Trenches offered help and a willingness to be part of a professional team rather than claiming to have the answers to complex social problems. The long tradition of analysts working in the community comes to fruition in this exemplary volume, which could well be adopted as the text for courses in community psychoanalysis at every psychoanalytic institute. Editors Bruce Sklarew, Stuart Twemlow, and Sallye Wilkinson deserve our highest praise for this ground-breaking publishing event."
- Marvin Margolis, M.D., Ph.D., Past President, APA
"Analysts in the Trenches is an urgently needed book. Drawing on psychoanalytic concepts but not constrained by them, the contributors present innovative programs and practices developed to respond to human suffering in our era's most violent, traumatic situations, from war and forced migration to crime and homelessness. The reader will be inspired by the courage, creativity, and sophistication of clinicians who are socially engaged citizens. This book is a must-read for those who want to know how psychoanalysis can be mobilized to respond to the crying needs of people around the world and right outside our doors."
- Neil Altman, Ph.D., Editor, Psychoanalytic Dialogues
"Sklarew, Twemlow, and Wilkinson execute a worthwhile and important project. Not only are they sharing some of the roadmaps that are currently being used to practice psychoanalytic principles in the community, they are also graciously challenging the psychoanalytic community to actively engage in community work. While more work remains to be done on refining the applications of community psychoanalysis, Analysts in the Trenches is an exciting and significant step in the right direction by providing plenty of grist for the mill toward furthering this endeavor."
- Annabelle Fell, M.A., in Smith College Studies in Social Work, 77.4, 2007
"Mental health professionals will find these accounts fascinating and challenging reading, especially in that psychoanalysis has come out of the consulting room and is alive and well in the trenches of community and social traumata."
- W.W. Meissner, S.J., M.D., University Professor of Psychoanalysis, Boston College Faculty Emeritus, in Bulleting of the Menninger Clinic, Vol. 71, No. 3 (Summer 2007)
1. Reverberations of Danger, Trauma, and PTSD on Group Dynamics
2. Life Without Walls: Violence and Trauma Among the Homeless
3. From the Events of History to a Sense of History: Aspects of Transgenerational Trauma and Brutality in the African-American Experience
4. Concurrent Intervention During Massive Community Trauma: An Analyst's Experience at Ground Zero
5. After the Violence: The Internal World and Linking Objects of a Refugee Family
6. Topeka's Healthy Community Initiative: A Psychoanalytic Model for Change
7. A Retired Psychoanalyst Volunteers to Promote School-Based Mental Health
8. The Uses of Aggression: Healing the Wounds of War in a Community Context
9. The School-Based Mourning Project: A Preventive Intervention in the Cycle of Inner-City Violence
10. Psychoanalytic Responses to Violent Trauma: The Child Development-Community Policing Partnership
11. Children's Exposure to Community Violence: Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Evaluation and Treatment
12. Early Mental Health Intervention and Prevention: The Implications for Government and the Wider Community
Bruce Sklarew, M.D., is Principal Investigator, School-Based Mourning Project, Wendt Center for Loss and Healing, Washington, DC.
Stuart W. Twemlow, M.D., is Director, Peaceful Schools and Communities Research Program, Menninger Clinic, and Professor of Psychiatry, Baylor School of Medicine, Houston, TX.
Sallye M. Wilkinson, Ph.D., teaches as the Greater Kansas City Psychoanalytic Institute.