Lover, Exorcist, Critic: Understanding Depth Psychotherapy

Author(s) : Alan Michael Karbelnig

Lover, Exorcist, Critic: Understanding Depth Psychotherapy

Book Details

  • Publisher : Phoenix Publishing House
  • Published : 2023
  • Cover : Paperback
  • Pages : 288
  • Category :
    Individual Psychotherapy
  • Catalogue No : 97101
  • ISBN 13 : 9781800131965
  • ISBN 10 : 9781800131

Reviews and Endorsements

Dr. Karbelnig’s book is well researched, yet easy to read – both broad and deep. He makes “old” ideas vulnerable, compelling, and strangely relevant to today’s society, culture, and its thinking people. It’s a warning that puts us on notice of the subtle deleterious effects of 21st century “innovation” and of an entrenched lack of true and deep self-awareness. But then he provides a discipline and practice that frees us up and opens us up, lowering self-deception and raising self-awareness with the possibility of true transformation. He (re)introduces and explains in detail depth psychology. Depth therapy is an ongoing profound encounter that is not just for symptom relief; but for liberty and freedom. And its cumulative effect duly incorporated in modern culture and leadership–along with related practices that raise awareness and compassion–just might be something that makes a significant contribution to healing our dysfunctional country and perhaps touches the world itself. I highly recommend the careful reading of Dr. Karbelnig’s gift.
Sam Alibrando, PhD, clinical psychologist and organizational consultant, author of Follow the Yellow Brick Road and The Three Dimensions of Emotion: Finding the Balance of Power, Heart, and Mindfulness

Lover, Exorcist, and Critic: Understanding Depth Psychotherapy reads like a long, entertaining, and enlightening essay in which Dr. Karbelnig puts his stamp on what thought leaders in the field of depth psychotherapy have to say about how it reduces human suffering. The rich case studies he provides, as well as candid self-disclosures, ensure that the complicated ideas he covers are accessible and hit their mark. The book’s message is immensely important: depth psychotherapy is a cherished cultural resource to help individuals truly think, act, and feel like individuals, and Dr. Karbelnig delivers that message resoundingly well.
Enrico Gnaulati, PhD, affiliate professor of psychology at Seattle University, author of Saving Talk Therapy: How Health Insurers, Big Pharma, and Slanted Science are Ruining Good Mental Health Care

Dr. Karbelnig does a masterful job of elucidating unconscious themes, which he terms “internal dramas,” and exploring how these hidden conflicts and dynamics influence our present-day functioning. Utilizing jargon-free and accessible language, he pulls back the curtain on the often-misunderstood and mysterious process of psychoanalysis, offering a new model of understanding psychoanalysis that differs from the stereotypical silent pipe-smoking analyst. We see how psychoanalysts function in three primary ways in relation to patients–the eponymous lover, exorcist, and critic. This book offers compelling studies of the contemporary depth psychotherapy process, revealing how the past haunts our present-day lives. We see how depth psychotherapy is akin to time traveling, visiting the past to understand the present in a new way, and making internal dramas available to be rewritten. In this deeply thoughtful, personal, and vulnerable volume, Dr. Karbelnig shows how psychoanalysis liberates us from our past and creates a new roadmap to freedom, offering hope for living a fully vibrant, authentic, and meaningful life.
Nina Savelle-Rocklin, PsyD, psychoanalyst and co-editor of Food for Thought: Perspectives on Eating Disorders, The Binge Cure, and Beyond the Primal Addiction

Alan Karbelnig’s book accomplishes what most volumes rarely do– that is to be just as congenial to an educated lay audience as it is to psychoanalysts at any point in their career. His authorial style covers, in his many voices, pretty much the entire history of psychoanalysis. He discusses it in its many iterations, including its primary leaders of prominent theories, along with their key followers, while providing a front row seat to the evolution of their arguments. This is critically important to understanding how psychoanalysis’ promise of “subversion” and of “freedom” would so often be undermined by its internal, intellectual “politics.” Karbelnig conveys this in a deeply personal and self-disclosing manner, illustrating his points with three “fellow travelers.” Calling these fictional patients “Carlos,” “Gilda,” and “Penn,” he captures the inexorable struggles involved in the depth psychotherapy of psychoanalysis, which parallels the struggles between its many theories. This volume will doubtlessly find homes on the bookshelves of psychoanalysts and its lay fans alike. Dr. Karbelnig’s sage and inviting chapter-by-chapter conversations turn this book into a remarkable page-turner of a read.
Phillip Ringstrom, PsyD, PhD, training and supervising psychoanalyst at the Institute of Contemporary Psychoanalysis (ICP) and author of A Relational Psychoanalytic Approach to Couples Psychotherapy

This is a brilliant book! It should be mandatory reading for any therapist in training and a beacon of wisdom senior practitioners will aspire towards. Through an inner prism in the intimate work with three ongoing case studies, we are afforded a rare glimpse into the minds and agonies of both patient and analyst. Written in clear and elegant prose, Dr. Karbelnig provides us with a real gem showcasing the pains, pitfalls, and ecstasies of what makes the talking cure so courageous and life-altering.
Jon Mills, professor in psychosocial and psychoanalytic studies at the University of Essex and author of Psyche, Culture, World, Debating Relational Psychoanalysis and Inventing God: Psychology of Belief and the Rise of Secular Spirituality

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