The Institute of Child Psychology

The Institute of Child Psychology

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    By Dr. Margaret Lowenfeld

    In a recent number of the International Journal of Psycho-Analysis Dr. Gardner Lindzey, in a paper called “Psycho-analytic: Paths of Change”, analyses the present position of psychoanalytic theory, summarising first the different attitudes to psychoanalytic theory found among psychoanalysts.

    Following this he says, “Psychoanalytic theory has remained an obstinate foreign body which has responded neither to efforts to dissolve and metabolise, to regurgitate or to excrete it”… although allowing for the “enormous influence of psychoanalytic theory upon the contemporary social science scene”. Lindzey writes: “given this vast influence and frequent personal convictions concerning the potential predictive capacity of psychoanalytic theory, it is only natural that we should expect to find a considerable array of well contrived, carefully executed and relevant investigations. What we actually observe is quite the contrary: As I have maintained elsewhere (Lindzey, 1958), “there is only a tiny quantity of research existing today that is directly relevant to the theory and is considered of reasonable merit by trained investigator and clinician alike”.

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