How not to escape from the grünbaum syndrome: A critique of the “new view” of psychoanalysis

Morris N. Eagle, Jerome C. Wakefield

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter discusses the “new view” claims that A. Grunbaum’s critique of Freudian psychoanalysis is irrelevant to contemporary clinicians because the latter have relinquished the traditional idea that analysts uncover hidden mental contents in the patient’s mind. It argues that this response to Grunbaum’s criticisms is not only incorrect in its assumptions, but if it were correct, would be more devastating to psychoanalysis than Grunbaum’s critique itself. According to S. A. Mitchell, analysts become afflicted with the “Grunbaum Syndrome” after exposure to his criticism that “that there is no way of testing their validity in any independent fashion”. In virtue of a new conceptualization of the psychoanalytic situation, analysts can avoid the discomfort of the “Grünbaum Syndrome” and can assure themselves of the “almost total irrelevance to contemporary clinicians” of Grunbaum’s critique. The birth of psychoanalysis was marked by the introduction of what Sigmund Freud referred to as the “cornerstone” concept of repression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationWho Owns Psychoanalysis?
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9780429909764
ISBN (Print)9781855753709
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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