Final Analysis: The Making and Unmaking of a Psychoanalyst

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9780060974190: Final Analysis: The Making and Unmaking of a Psychoanalyst

He was the rising star of psychoanalysis, an intimate associate of Anna Freud and Kurt Eissler, a member of the Freudian “inner circle” with unrestricted access to the Freud Archives. And then Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson threw it all away because he dared to break the psychoanalytic community’s deepest taboo: he told the truth in public. As he unmasks the pretensions and abuses of this elite profession, Masson invites us to eavesdrop on the shockingly unorthodox analysis he was subjected to in the course of his analytic training. But the more prestige Masson attained, the more he came to doubt not only the integrity of his colleagues, but the validity of their method. In the end, he blew the whistle–fully aware of the personal and professional consequences.

With wit, wonder, and unflinching candor, Masson brilliantly exposes the cult of psychoanalysis and recounts his own self-propelled fall from grace. A sensation when it first appeared, Final Analysis is even more provocative and engrossing today. Written with passion and humor, this is the book that revealed a revered profession for what it was–and launched Masson on his true career.

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From the Back Cover:

More praise for Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson
and Final Analysis

“For all the light Masson sheds once again on the Freudians, this is most of all a fascinating and highly unusual kind of autobiography–a truthful account of the subject’s own professional training–a side of life we hardly ever hear about.”
–KATE MILLETT

“Even if only a fraction of psychoanalysts and analysands have suffered experience quite so gross as that revealed by Jeffrey Masson, his candid and fascinating account of his unique trajectory through the world of psychoanalysis should cause widespread soul-searching on the real value of years spent on or behind the couch.”
–DOUG ELLSBERG

“A powerful volume which–along with his other books–must be read by all mental-health professionals because of Masson’s passionate insistence that we confront the social realities, the value systems, and the arbitrary abuse of power in actual life.”
–DR. MARGARET BRENMAN GIBSOM
Clinical professor of psychology
at Harvard Medical School
“Dr. Masson, once the wunderkind of psychoanalysis, tells the inside story of that most pretentious of cults from the unique perspective of one who spent five years on his back on the couch-altar. Final Analysis delivers a lethal injection of skepticism not only to the moribund body of Freudian folklore, but generically to the booming business of mind therapy.”
–JOHN FRIEDBERG, M.D.
Author of Shock Treatment Is Not
Good for the Brain

“A terrific story, full of passion, insight, wit, and revelation.”
The New York Times Book Review

“A POWERFUL WORK, especially important for its warning about the power that psychoanalysts can wield over patients.”
Los Angeles Times

“As provocative as might be expected from so controversial a figure, [this] is a fascinating and very readable book.”
The Cleveland Plain Dealer

“A lively, juicy account . . . A fascinating insider’s view.”
Kirkus Reviews

About the Author:

Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, ex-psychoanalyst and former projects director of the Sigmund Freud Archives, has written more than a dozen books, including the bestsellers The Nine Emotional Lives of Cats, Dogs Never Lie About Love, and When Elephants Weep. A longtime resident of Berkeley, California, he now lives in New Zealand with his wife, two sons, and five cats.

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Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson
Published by HarperPerennial (1991)
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Published by HarperPerennial (1991)
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