A Shining Affliction: A Story of Harm and Healing in Psychotherapy

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9780140240122: A Shining Affliction: A Story of Harm and Healing in Psychotherapy
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"Soars into sublime meditation...what makes this book so extraordinary is her willingness to reveal exactlty what goes on in the sometimes mysterious encounter between therapist and patient."—The Los Angeles Times.

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About the Author:

Annie G. Rogers is the professor of psychoanalysis and clinical psychology at Hampshire College as well as being on the faculty of the Lacanian School of Psychoanalysis in San Francisco. She is the winner of a Fulbright Fellowship in Ireland, a Radcliffe Fellowship at Harvard University, and a Whiting Fellowship at Hampshire College. She is the author of A Shining Affliction, The Unsayable: The Hidden Language of Trauma, as well as many other works, both fiction and nonfiction.

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Rogers pulls us with disarming directness into her treatment, during her psychiatric internship, of a severely traumatized five-year-old boy. The touching appeal of the interactions between them then propel us into the frightening core of Rogers' book--her own rapid decline into psychosis and institutionalization. This was triggered by the child's expression of his horrifying fears and her own initial therapist's rejection of her. Only the ministrations of a second unusually gifted psychoanalyst helped Rogers reassemble her shattered psyche. The multifaceted, two-way healing that occurred between the young intern struggling for emotional truth and the "untreatable" child finally enabled Rogers to recall the searing pain and frustration she experienced and challenge some of modern psychotherapy's basic tenets. Although mostly straightforward enough, Rogers leaves curiously unexamined the aborted relationship with her first, rejecting therapist, which makes her account jarringly incomplete despite its overall mesmerizing force. Whitney Scott

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