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Paper with Fred Sander on a literature course for Family Therapy

Introduction:
Fred Sander and I had both been psychiatry residents at Albert Einstein where in the second year the study of psychoanalytic literature was leavened with readings in fiction, discussed at convivial Friday evening dinners at the home of the director of training, Jose Barchilon. So when Fred and I designed a course in family therapy literature for the Family Studies Section, we included the reading of some famous family stories, the Book of Genesis, T.S. Eliot’s The Cocktail Party, and Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice., as well as a family-dybamic look at some of Freud’s cases, Little Hans and above all, his most instructive failure, Dora. Looking over the reading list forty years later, I think the family literature has never been so enjoyable to read. And I note that we showed the seminar a new approach to literature, the movies of the four horsemen of the movement, Ackerman, Jackson, Whitaker and Bowen, each interviewing the same family and each coming up with a different formulation of the problem and plan for treatment.

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