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Dr. Joseph Newirth, PhD

From Sign to Symbol: Transformational Processes in Psychoanalysis, Psychotherapy and Psychology 

In From Sign to Symbol: Transformational Processes in Psychoanalysis, Psychotherapy, and Psychology, Joseph Newirth describes the evolution of the unconscious from Freud’s positivist focus on symptoms and repressed memories to the contemporary understanding of symbols that hold meaning within intimate, intersubjective relationships. Newirth presents multiple approaches to the use of symmetrical therapeutic strategies, including the use of humor, dreams, metaphors, and implicit procedural learning, in transforming concrete symptoms and signs into the symbolic organizations of meaning. Examples from both psychotherapeutic practice and supervision are presented to illustrate the development of the capacity for symbolic thought or mentalization.

The book received the American Board and Academy of Psychoanalysis 2019 award for the best book on clinical psychoanalysis.

"This book could be considered a sequel to Newirths (2003) outstanding Between Emotion and Cognition: The Generative Unconscious, which won the 2004 Gradiva Award for the best published, produced or publicly exhibited work that advances psychoanalysis” (Paul Ian Steinberg, 2019)

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Dr. Newirth's faculty profile can be found here.

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