Bent Rosenbaum – Reflections on Guidelines for Supportive Psychodynamic Psychotherapy with Persons Experiencing Their First Episode of Schizophrenia-Spectrum Psychosis

THE LETTER 55 & 56 Spring/Summer 2014, pages 53-64.

The Danish National Schizophrenia Project is used as a background for presenting some phenomenological characteristics of persons in psychotic states of mind, some psychoanalytic concepts grounded in the phenomenology of the psychotic self, and some elements in the supporting psychoanalytic approach. Finally, the concept of cure will be presented as an increased capacity for symbolisation.

Keywords: Danish National Schizophrenia project (DNS); phenomenology of first episode psychosis; supportive psychodynamic psychotherapy; guidelines

Some phenomenological characteristics of psychotic states of mind

In the last 20 years, an increased interest among psychiatrists and psychologists in the revival of phenomenological psychiatry has taken place. The focus of this interest has mainly been in the fieldof diagnostics, and this approach has, to some extent counteracted the objectifying, reductionistic, symptom-focused mode of diagnosing psychopathological disorders in the DSM- and ICD-dominated mainstream psychiatry. In Denmark, the psychiatrist, Josef Parnas, has worked with the philosopher, Dan Zahavi, and the American psychologist, Louis Sass, to investigate the phenomenological aspects of schizophrenia.

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