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The Psychotic Wavelength (The New Library of Psychoanalysis)
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on 29 January 2010
The "Psychotic Wavelength" by the late Dr. Richard Lucas is a book that provides an accessible way (in a clear language with limited use of jargon) of using psychoanalytic concepts in general psychiatry, more specifically in the understanding and treatment of patients of the psychotic spectrum (including Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder).
The core idea of this work is that psychodynamic ideas and way of listening to the patient can be of an enormous relevance when clinicians are facing a psychotic state.
Dr. Lucas argues that when listening to a person with a psychotic disorder one should try to understand if we are in contact with the psychotic or non-psychotic part of the personality (an idea previously developed by Wilfred Bion), trying to establish an emotional contact with the patient in order to have a positive therapeutic relationship.

The book provides a high quality theoretical framework, clinical discussions and plenty of interesting clinical vignettes that help to understand clearly Dr. Lucas ideas.

The book is divided in 5 parts:

1 - The Case for a Psychoanalytic Perspective on Psychosis
2 - A Review of Psychoanalytic Theories about Psychosis
3 - The Psychotic Wavelength
4 - The Psychotic Wavelength in Affective Disorders
5 - The Implications for Management and Education

This book is essential to all those working with persons suffering from psychotic disorders (both psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, social workers, psychotherapists, psychoanalysts, mental health managers and also family members and other carers).
It will provide a fantastic starting point for students and junior staff members, and an opportunity to review concepts for those more experienced, being very helpful in the effort to bridge the current gap between psychiatry and psychoanalysis.

In short, Dr. Lucas provides a strong demonstration of the psychoanalytic contribution to the undestanding and treatment of psychotic disorders and indulges us with an excellent book.

You may also be interested in reading:

Psychoses (International Society for the Psychological Treatment of Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses)
Evolving Psychosis (International Society for the Psychological Treatment of Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses)
Past, Present and Future of Psychotherapeutic Approaches to Schizophrenic Psychoses (International Society for the Psychological Treatments of the Schizophrenias and Other Psychoses)
Schizophrenia: Its Origins and Need-adapted Treatment
Experiences of Schizophrenia: An Integration of the Personal, Scientific and Therapeutic
Collected Papers on Schizophrenia and Related Subjects (Maresfield Library)
Schizophrenic Disorders: Theory and Treatment from a Psychodynamic Point of View
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on 30 September 2015
The late and lamented Richard Lucas was a wonderful communicator about his work. This book is testament to his talent and compassion for very disturbed people. It is very readable and illuminating.
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