Play and Playfulness : Developmental, Cultural, and Clinical Aspects
While the psychodynamic understanding of play and play's therapeutic potential was long restricted to the realm of children, Winnicott's work demonstrated the profound significance of the capacity to play for healthy mental functioning during adult life. Scattered writings of Erikson, Glenn, and Shopper notwithstanding, the early spark of understanding remained largely ill developed. In Play and Playfulness, the reader is offered an exciting and highly informative set of essays about the psychic area that lies between reality and unreality and between veracity and imagination. It is the area of paradox and creativity. It sustains the self, allows for ego-replenishing regressions, and adds to the joy of the vital and lived experience. This book provides an easy and readable passage to the valley of the transitional experience in which creative synthesis of reality and unreality leads to a world of vigor, enthusiasm, and liveliness. The cultural variations and the clinical implications of such an experience are thoroughly elucidated. The result is a volume replete with technical virtuosity, clinical relevance, and the basic and nearly self evident humane music of the day-to-day experience of life.
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- Hardback | 252 pages
- 163 x 239 x 22mm | 558g
- 16 Mar 2011
- Jason Aronson Inc. Publishers
- Northvale NJ, United States
Table of contents
Part 1 Part I-Development Chapter 2 Chapter 1-Self-Other Action Play: A Window into the Representational World of the Infant Chapter 3 Chapter 2-Fathers and Play Chapter 4 Chapter 3-Adolescence as a Time to Play Part 5 Part II-Psychopathology Chapter 6 Chapter 4-Neurotic Inhibitions of Play Chapter 7 Chapter 5-Normal and Pathological Playfulness Chapter 8 Chapter 6-Remembering, Replaying, and Working Through: The Transformation of Trauma in Children's Play Part 9 Part III-Sociocultural Aspects Chapter 10 Chapter 7-Cultural Pathways to Understanding Children's Play: Mythology and Folklore Chapter 11 Chapter 8-Playing for Survival during the Holocaust Chapter 12 Chapter 9-Play and Creativity Chapter 13 Chapter 10-Play and Track II Diplomacy Part 14 Part IV-Technical Implications Chapter 15 Chapter 11-Aggression in Children: Origins, Manifestations, and Management through Play Chapter 16 Chapter 12-Play and Very Young Children in Object Relations Family Therapy Chapter 17 Chapter 13-Playfulness in the Adult Analytic Relationship Chapter 18 References
Freud defined good mental health as 'the ability to love, to work, and to play.' We have devoted much time to studying our ability to love and to work. Our 'ability to play' has gotten short-changed and needs our attention. This clinically relevant and highly enlightening book takes us from child's play to adult play, from the development-stimulating power of play to its use in problem-solving adaptation, even to its outwitting and out-battling trauma, and to its application to loosening the rigidities of adversarial diplomacy. This richly informing, superb book takes us on a journey from childhood to-as long as we live. We must know this for clinical work! -- Henri Parens, MD, Thomas Jefferson University and Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia Monisha Akhtar's book brings together an impressive array of experts to demonstrate that taking play seriously deepens our clinical knowledge, enriches technique, and reclaims the psychoanalytic understanding that play is central to all human endeavors. -- Kerry Kelly Novick and Jack Novick, PhD, Michigan Psychoanalytic Institute
About Monisha C. Akhtar
Monisha C. Akhtar, PhD, is a faculty member at the Psychoanalytic Center of Philadelphia, PA. She maintains a private practice in Ardmore, PA.