On Group Analysis and Beyond: Group Analysis as Meta-Theory, Clinical Social Practice, and Art

Author(s) : Anastassios Koukis

On Group Analysis and Beyond: Group Analysis as Meta-Theory, Clinical Social Practice, and Art

Book Details

  • Publisher : Karnac Books
  • Published : July 2016
  • Cover : Paperback
  • Pages : 288
  • Category :
    Group Psychotherapy
  • Catalogue No : 37557
  • ISBN 13 : 9781782203612
  • ISBN 10 : 1782203613
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By extending the views of Foulkes, Bion, Freud, and Klein, this book draws the outline of a group analytic theory and meta-theory by studying the paternal and maternal functions as expressed by the conductor and the group analytic group respectively and extrapolating them to the psychoanalytic aspects of Lacan and the structuralism of Levi-Strauss’s anthropological views. From this perspective, it investigates major group analytic phenomena, such as the role of money, envy, scapegoating and the regular or early ending of group therapy by patients with neurosis and borderline personality disorders.

Part of the book is devoted to analyzing how eating disorders or depression in psychosis can be effectively treated and how the defective function of dreaming in psychosis can be reconstituted through group analysis, and stresses the need for research into the neural correlations of dreaming. The book further explores the ways in which group analysis can be used in the domain of the social unconscious by probing the dialectic of desire and despair in the post-modern world. Its conclusion notes the similarities between group analysis and the art of music and illuminates how the act of conducting a group analytic group resembles the art of conducting an orchestra.

Reviews and Endorsements

‘The lack of a coherent group analytic theory has stimulated many contributions including this excellent book. Anastassios Koukis suggests a new model of the symbolic roles of father and mother in the group that is, quoting Lacan, “kaleidoscopic”, freely rotating from conductor to group. With great courage it is discussed that man as a social animal finds his natural place in a group, predetermined by organic inheritance, metaphorically called instinct or drive. The new approach is convincingly followed through the theories of Foulkes and Bion, and the transcultural aspects of groups become easier to understand. Problems of early ontogenetic origin like envy, and inherited ones like psychoses, can be easier to work with, and a comprehensive meta-theory opens up wider scope for group work.’
-- A. P. Tom Ormay, training group analyst, and former editor of the journal Group Analysis

‘Reading this book allows us to get deeply in touch with the psychodynamic approach to the phenomenon of the group. In an interesting and comprehensive way, the author explores the roots of the philosophical and psychological roles and processes that are characteristic of any group, including the transculturality that lies beyond cultural expressions and psychological syndromes. In this way the therapeutic use of groups is enlarged as being applicable to different psychopathologic, as well as psychologically difficult, situations. As a group analyst and musician, the author is very sensitive to tones emanating from participants in his groups, from where he takes clinical examples and inspiration. Sensing the unconscious and preconscious vibrations in a special way, he enters the spheres of the art of composition of the group, connecting them not only with theoretical principles but enlarging them towards meta-theoretical concepts with the rich imagery of a researcher-poet.’
-- Professor Ivan Urlic, MD, PhD, neuropsychiatrist and training group analyst

About the Author(s)

Anastassios Koukis, PhD, BSc (Hons) in Psychology, MBPsS, is a psychologist, group analyst and psychoanalyst, a full member of GASI and a member of IAGP, and also the founder of ISPS Hellas, the Greek branch of ISPS. He is the author of two books in Greek, Dreams in Group Analysis, and The Decline of Paternity , and has written many papers on group analysis and psychoanalysis, especially on grou -psychotherapy of psychoses. He is also a musician and clarinet player.

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