Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Healing Relationships

The Spontaneous Gesture is a collection of letters from D.W. Winnicott.  As collections of letters go, it is good but not great.  It is certainly a good enough collection of letters.  Winnicott worked with such ideas as transitional objects and the good enough parent.  He worked with Melanie Klein and Anna Freud.  Along with these letter recipients, there are James Strachy, Edward Glover, Ernest Jones, David Rapaport, Harry Guntrip. Joan Riviere, Jacques Lacan, A.R. Luria and Wilfred Bion.  There aren't letters to Winnicott, which I think makes such a book much more engaging.  Many of the letters are reactions to papers and presentations by the person who got the letter.  There is a little bit of personal information, but not much.  From a letter to B.J. Knopf, who had reacted to a letter of his in the Observer: "Perhaps you will do best to give up trying to work at all this, and just go on naturally enjoying your experiences.  Later you may like to go back over what you experience with a book or two to guide you, but while you are having a child I think you may do best to follow your natural feelings."  Here's a good biography of Winnicott: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/791141.Winnicott