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  #1  
Unread February 25th, 2006, 11:47 AM
Henry Stein Henry Stein is offline
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Ch. I & II (Mind & Body, Prototype)

On February 27th, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Lectures to Physicians and Medical Students, Chapters I & II. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

Ch I is Postgraduate Lecture No. 1 (1932). It is published for the first time in CCWAA, Vol.8, like all the postgraduate lectures given at Long Island College of Medicine. The lectures were held before an audience of physicians; we may safely infer that the word "medical" stands for "professional". Today, there are also other professionals contributing to the field of mental health in addition to physicians. The lectures 1- 7 form together a compact presentation of IP. They give an idea of Individual Psychology in the making. In spite of the clarity of expression and the logical structure of these lectures, they are meant for an advanced study of IP. The style is very concise, and a special attention is needed. On the activities of Adler at the Long Island College of Medicine, see Edward Hoffman's The Drive for Self, p. 277 and 281-282. Lecture 1 starts with a philosophical study on the interrelationships between mind and body. What is called mind, is not tied up in a specific region of the brain. It is a property of the living organism in general. Life is a movement toward a goal. This implies striving. In general, striving means a movement from minus to plus. "Plants, animals, and human beings, strive to achieve a goal of completion. This completion involves a feeling of having overcome, a feeling of a plus situation." The goal is made concrete with the help of high degree of cooperation to contribute. Next, Adler takes up a special point: the need of the various professionals to cooperate. Medical psychology needs the cooperation of many different disciplines. Adler rejects simple formulas and explanations. "Each person is different." However, there are some general hypotheses that may be useful if combined with a hard work and thinking. In the development of the children, the creativity of the child plays a special role. The social feeling is for developing child like breathing--it is necessary. "Our whole life should be cooperation." There are, however, many obstacles to cooperation. After a presentation of the obstacles, Adler proceeds to present the three tasks of life, and then proceeds to discuss neuroses. A case ilustration concludes the paper.

Ch II, Postgraduate Lecture No. 2, begins a short recapitulation of some basic concepts; then Adler continues with the concept of the "prototype". You may find explanations for this concept in Ansbacher & Ansbacher The Individual Psychology of Alfred Adler in Ch 7, The Style of Life. In their comments, the Ansbachers recapitulate some related concepts used by Adler, e.g. Lebens-Schablone (the scheme of life). Our task is made simpler if we translate this concept as life style. It denotes the unity of the person. It could mean also the "direction of the life style". The Adler continues presenting a case study. Adler discusses carefully the subjective reasons of the client for his/her contact. Finally, it is time to draw the consequences: "You see how he creates symptoms. He tells you how he makes himself depressed, why he wants to stay away from strangers, but he does not know it."

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://www.Adlerian.us/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread March 12th, 2006, 09:54 PM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA Vol. 8, Ch. III & IV (Symptoms)

On March 13th, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters III & IV. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.


Ch III Postgraduate Lecture No. 3 is a study of the symptoms and syndromes of the neurotic person. There is much information on the problems of sleep and dreaming. Adler begins his lecture with a warning: it is necessary to know as much as possible of the organic problems the client may have. No organic deficiency should be overlooked. Neurotic problems involve a tendency to be on the retreat, to defend oneself against the threats of the outer world. So there is always a degree of egocentricity involved. Illness and pain may have certain function in the life style of the client; what this function might be, should be carefully studied. Adler proceeds to present some cases where clients have had dreams with a clear meaning; dreams are for Adler, means of preparing oneself for the challenges of the life, and analyzing the existing individual problems the client may have. Then Adler discusses the problems of sleeplessness. This problem may have a psychological background, and it is important to know what it might be. Adler is against the easy use of medication in these cases. If provided with medication, the client may have a dependency problem, in addition to his/her other problems. Adler ends this lecture with some viewpoints on social interest; it is active, not passive. It does mean that you belong to some clubs, but that you really contribute to the welfare of other people.

Ch IV Postgraduate Lecture No. 4 continues the discussion of various symptoms. Adler starts with the problems of stuttering. Adler thinks that stuttering occurs because language means social communication, so there must always be some failure in developing cooperation behind this problem. Today, we know that certain problems of comunication may occur in connection ADHD syndrome, so be careful in drawing too hasty conclusions. Adler continues with two case illustrations. The discussion on stuttering is continued in the next chapter. In the interpretation of his two cases, Adler is using all the available methods of interpretation at his disposal, so these cases give a very good idea what IP in the making really means.

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread March 19th, 2006, 12:17 PM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Chapt. V & VI (Stuttering, Enuresis)

On March 20th, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters V & VI. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

In Ch V Postgraduate Lecture No. 5 Adler continues his discussion on stuttering. Adler says that stuttering is a good example how neurosis works. Some people stop stuttering when they grow up. Some people continue their life with neurotic symptoms. Adler does not accept the idea of transference as a therapeutic method. "The patient is not changed" (by transference), but only by identifying and correcting his mistakes--neurotic problems are problems of cooperation. Next, Adler proceeds to give fifteen case examples of stuttering, noting that the clients use stuttering under conditions of stress. These people always have some reinforcement from others to continue the symptom.

Ch VI Postgraduate Lecture No. 6 is a presentation on further problems in medical psychology. Adler discusses some neurotic problems of childhood, because all children are the real makers of the grown-up personalities. In many senses, these lectures are the most clinical texts Adler ever wrote, and also the most difficult to comprehend, so no quick conclusions may be made on the basis of these summaries. In this lecture, Adler studies enuresis nocturna, discussing this problem from the viewpoint of psychology. Today, we know that there may be some medical conditions behind this. There may be also some social and cultural conventions--at least this problem is not as important today as it was in Adler's time. There is in general much less discussion around this. Adler thinks that enuresis is way of expressing hostility against the organized rules of the social order. Some children may want to be centers of attention, and they want to intrude. So enuresis is a way of keeping others busy with them. Adler thinks that enuresis is a symptom of possible neurosis, and it may mean that that this child has a disposition to have neurotic problems later on. As such, these symptoms usually cease when the child grows older. This problem was more important in Adler's times than it is today. Adler tells us that some cities had hospitals just for these children. One may conclude that the social living conditions in Vienna, as well as in other cities of the western world, were much worse a century ago than they are today.

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread March 23rd, 2006, 08:23 PM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Chapt. VII, VIII, & IX (Neurotic Symptoms, Case History)

On March 27th, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters VII & VIII. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

Ch. VII Postgraduate Lecture No. 7 is a discussion of some further neurotic symptoms. Adler discusses eating problems, menstrual problems, and sexual disturbances. Eating problems have been recently discussed quite a lot in professional literature. It is interesting to note that Adler understood very clearly the connection between life style and eating disturbances. Todya, what we call anorexia nervosa, was hunger strike for Adler. With this concept, Adler wanted to point out that the decision to avoid eating is a kind of protest action. However, Adler emphasizes also that one should never forget that the lack of appetite may well have a medical background; in such cases, psychological methods alone will not help. "Differential diagnosis is always important."
The lecture series presented in Long Island seminar concentrates on a few specific syndromes. It is a very clinical approach that Adler is using here. The lectures do not provide a general view of IP, but instead an in-depth perspective of IP in action.

Ch. VIII Medical Course at Urban Hospital - Lecture No. 1 is the first in a series of lectures Adler gave in Europe, in some Urban Hospital (its name is not known more exactly). The series comprises 18 lectures. They have been unpublished until now. The first lecture is a general overview of IP. Here Adler says once again that it is not enough to know that the individual may have psychological issues behind his/her pains; one should know exactly what the individual situation of the person is, what it has been, and how he/she reacts in different situations.

Ch. IX is Lecture No. 2, and it continues the study of some general principles. There are viewpoints on symptomatology and case-history. Adler discusses all the general viewpoints in the light of a case study concerning a young woman. The lecture is once more a strictly clinical study of this young lady with some neurotic problems.

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread April 9th, 2006, 09:45 AM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Chapt. X & XI (Overcoming Difficulties)

On April 10th, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters X & XI. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

Ch. X Medical Course at Urban Hospital - Lecture No. 3 continues the discussion of the previous case. Adler points out that the client had her problems relatively late in her life. "Recall the biographies of outstanding people. A large number of them ovecame physical or psychological problems in earliest childhood." The earlier the child begins to overcome her problems, the more successful she will be in dealing with them. In the end of the lecture, Adler points out that utmost tact is needed in dealing with the problems of the client. One should not hurt the client, and one should keep all personal issues out of the therapeutic situation.

Ch. XI Lecture No. 4 concludes the case study. In the end of the lecture, is a brief encounter between Adler and the client. Adler discusses first the life style of the client, expectations of pampering, suicide as revenge, and depression. Adler points out that the discussion with the client may lead her to find another viewpoint that will help her to see her troubles in a new light; this might prove helpful from her point of view.

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread April 16th, 2006, 12:12 PM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Chapt. XII & XIII (Discouragement, Nervous Exhaustion)

On April 17th, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters XII & XIII. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

Ch. XII is Lecture No. 6 because Lecture No. 5 is missing. It is another case study. The lecture ends with a practical encounter with the client; she is very discouraged and she thinks she has no hope. Adler concludes the discussion with him saying: "But, how can anyone lose courage? We want to see how we can help you. Until the next time, think about whether you had some kind of disappointment before your illness started." He wants the client to start thinking herself about her problems, and how these troubles could be alleviated. He wants to encourage the client to meet the challenges of her own life.

Ch. XIII is Lecture No. 7. It is a case study of a man, 50. He suffers from nervous exhaustion and impotence. The lecture concludes again with an encounter. The client tells of his depression, of his nervous exhaustion, of his weak condition. Adler approaches the client with softness; afterwards, he explains that the client is in danger of a suicide, so great care and diplomacy are needed.

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread April 23rd, 2006, 09:50 AM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Chapt. XIV & XV (Depression, Epilepsy)

On April 24th, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters XIV & XV. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

Ch. XIV Medical Course at Urban Hospital - Lecture No. 8 is again a case study with a demonstration. Adler describes a case of a woman, 34 who is depressed. General diagnostic categories do not play a great role in IP, because the experience of the individual, his/her personality, his/her history, life style, and life goals are the most important aspects, not the general diagnostic categories. However, this lecture contains a brief study of the concept of cyclothymic disorder; Adler expresses his skepticism about this idea. The client has attempted suicide. Adler points out that the client eats now more than earlier, and has gained some weight; this is a positive sign. Adler tries to encourage the client to think more about other people than about herself, e.g. about her friends.

Ch. XV Lecture No. 9 is again based on a case study, a woman, 30. This lecture is even more interesting than some others, because here is a vivid description of a discussion between Adler and Freud concerning a case of suspected epilepsy. At first, the client was treated by Freud; then, a conflict emerged between her and Freud. Freud said that the client is very hysterical. Adler continued the therapy and was seemingly successful. The discussion between Adler and the client is very interesting. The client is very much on the defense, but Adler is able to give small hints to her what she should think about - there is again this responsibility of the client to do her homework and to try help herself.

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread May 3rd, 2006, 09:27 AM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Chapt. XVI & XVII (Hysteria, Preoccupation With Illness)

On May 1st, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters XVI & XVII. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

Ch. XVI Medical Course at Urban Hospital - Lecture No. 10 continues the discussion of the previous case, woman 30. Adler states that "every episode of hysteria is psychologically induced because the patient is imagining an experience that does not exist." The lecture contains a record of a patient-interview, including Adler's interpretative comments made during and after the interview. Adler describes how the client creates her symptoms, but she is not able to see the connection between herself and her symptoms. "She sees merely the results or emotions they engender." However, Adler's final appraisal of the client is positive. If and when she is cured, "she would have done everything necessary herself." The function of the therapist is to help her to find the right track and right questions.

Ch. XVII Lecture No. 11 presents a case of a woman 35. Adler comments that it is difficult to help the client because she is on a medical pension. He estimates that there are really no more organic hindrances that would prevent work. Adler recommends some educational intervention that would "stiffen her backbone" and would help her abandon her constant preoccupation with the ideas of sickness.

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread May 17th, 2006, 06:32 PM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Chapt. XVIII & XIX (Neck Spasms, Anxiety)

On May 22nd, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters XVIII & XIX. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

Ch. XVIII Medical Course at Urban Hospital - Lecture No. 12 is based on a casee study of a woman, 35, with neck spasm. Adler begins his presentation with a recapitulation of the findings of the medical examinations, conducted by three specialists. After this, Adler concentrates on the psychological approach. Adler says that "IP often begins at the point where medicine stops. ... the patient must be persuaded that despite her problems, she is capable of fulfilling her life tasks." There is again a record of an interview. Adler ends this interview with: "She who dares, wins!"

Ch. XIX Lecture No. 15 continues the discussion of the previous case. There are comments on her weight loss. There is another case study of a man, 41, with anxiety, suicidal tendencies, and drinking. Adler emphasizes the importance the content in one's life may have. Without content, life may be empty and meaningless. So Adler recommends that people should learn something in addition to work. Something that makes people happy is needed, music, or other forms of cultural activities. The case of the man, 41, is a difficult case with a number of problems. In the light of the case history, Adler concludes that the man can feel himself safe only in the hospital, which leaves him unprepared to face the challenges of life. Even in this case, Adler tries to find something constructuve that would help the client to find his way out of his unbearable situation.

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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Unread May 27th, 2006, 10:51 AM
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Default Discussion of CCWAA, Vol. 8, Chapt. XX & XXI (Fear of Women, Men as Enemies)

On May 29th, we will begin a discussion of The Collected Clinical Works of Alfred Adler, Volume 8, Chapters XX & XXI. The following chapter summaries were prepared by Manu Jaaskelainen.

Ch. XX Medical Course at Urban Hospital - Lecture No. 16 continues the discussion of the previous case of a man, 41. Adler points out that the fear of women controls the life of this client. His relationship with his mother was highly problematic--from her he had his fear of syphilis. He was married twice, but his marriages were unhappy. At the end of the lecture, Adler devotes some thoughts to the possible danger of suicide that may lurk behind all the anxieties of this client. However, Adler's assesment of the total situation is optimistic--in the end, the client will learn to abandon his many aggressions, and he will become "a fellow man no longer filled with anger at those around him."

Ch. XXI Lecture No. 17 is a study of the neuroses. There is a case illustration of a woman, 40, who is argumentative and fearful. This lady appreciated the society of intellectuals, but her attitude with regard to men was as if she lived in enemy territory. In spite of this, she had a number of contacts with men. There is again a record of an interview with this lady. Adler encourages her, and says: "Things will look up again for you; you need only to talk this out."

To order your copy of Volume 8, go to http://go.ourworld.nu/hstein/cwaa-v8.htm .
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