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Newsletter Vol. 1 May 1998

Coordination Meeting „Psychoanalytic Selfpsychology in Europe" held in Dreieich, Germany on October 11./12. 1997

Dr.Wolfgang Milch and Dr.Hans-Peter Hartmann invited analysts throughout Europe to attend this first „coordinating meeting". A total of 42 people from Hungary, Switzerland, Austria and Germany participated in this meeting.

After long debating it was decided to establish the „European Federation Psychoanalytic Selfpsychology". The EFPS is a gathering of colleagues, who have as a common goal: promotion of scientific exchange i.e. through the organizing of annual conferences, the coordination of events for Europe (training programs, supervising groups, workshops, seminars, lectures. etc.) and make them public and more accessible for a larger audience. The exchange of information should improve by the availability of a regular newsletter such as this one is.

It was decided not to establish a registered association immediately, in order to provide more time and space for local and national organizational growth. In the meeting it was felt that the tasks that at the present time are necessary for Selfpsychology to grow in Europe are more adequately met through a more open federation than in a more structured association with registered members.

In the meeting the following resolutions were agreed upon:

1. The setting up of a „Coordinating Center", which will be conducted on a rotating basis.

The time interval, which can be up to two to three years, will be discussed and evaluated at the first annual European meeting. The coordinating center will collect information regarding for example: symposiums, lectures, workshops, when and where non-European analysts will appear in Europe, educational training, and new developments in Selfpsychology and in related disciplines.

The first „coordinating center will be run by the Munich Group

Information should be sent to Ron Bodansky

(Tel. 089/4482903, Fax 089/2609740, E-Mail

Address: EFPS-Coordinating Center c/o Bodansky, Wörthstr. 47, Germany-81667 Munich.

Information and Discussions are in the Internet on the Web-Pages under: and

2. The Coordinating Center will send out twice a year in German and English a Newsletter The copy deadline will be on the 31st of January and the 30th of June 1998. The first issue will be set out free of charge to all those interested, later on there will be a subscription price of 50 German marks to cover postage and handling. There will be no profit made!

3. The first annual Congress of the Federation will take place from the 25th till the 27th of September 1998 in Vienna, Austria. The „Vienna Circle for Psychoanalysis and Selfpsychology" is responsible for the organization. (see below)

The annual meeting will take place in different cities every year and will be organized independently by the local groups. The purpose it to further the professional and persoanl exchange in Europe. The annual meeting will be conducted like the international symposium in Dreieich - bilingually (German and English) .

4. Included is a „Questionnaire" which should be filled out. What is asked for is special fields of interest and questions and inquiries which the „coordinating center" can delegate, for example from colleagues, regarding patients, this can be answered personally or used for open discussion in the newsletter.

In order for the work of the „coordinating center" to be conducted properly, in all the activities regarding Psychoanalytic Selfpsychology and its related fields, it is necessary to send your information to the address above. The participants of the meeting in Dreieich considered it their responsibility to contribute 50 German Marks to the account of the

„European Federation of Psychoanalytic Selfpsychology" - „EFPS"

Account Nr. 6890 29 24 00 Hypobank Munich, Bank Code: 700 200 01

We would like to take this opportunity to ask for further financial help to support the activities of the EFPS.


The return of the questionnaires by our German speaking colleagues has shown us that there is a big interest in the use of the coordinating center and the information exchange that it can provide.

When we arranged the dates in our calendar it was apparent how necessary a coordinating center is. On the same June weekend in Zurich, Vienna, and Munich there are three very interesting events which unfortunately get in the way of each other. We think it is really important to let us know as soon as possible what events are being planned so that we can coordinate them better and even if there is time make suggestions if there are other events on the same weekend. Also the opportunity of knowing when and who is coming can be used to coordinate events so that the same visiting guest may appear in different cities throughout Europe and thus for example the costs of the plane flights may be shared by different groups.

We would also like to make the suggestion that in different cities, regions, countries, groups be formed where we can send information to specific contact addresses for that region. That certain people say they will take the responsibility for certain areas. This will provide for a quicker and better flow of information.

For our next edition, we would like that the different European groups, for example in Israel, Norway, Italy, Austria, Switzerland and Germany write us and describe for publication more about their local groups. They should be sent to us no later than the 30th of June. Please write!

We would like to take this opportunity to thank heatedly Wolfgang Milch and Hans-Peter Hartmann who made it possible through their hard work to establish the EFPS.

Also a big thanks to the colleagues who contributed money to make this first issue possible

(Hannelore and Ron Bodansky)


In Memorial

Manfred Busch

October 25 1941 - November 11 1997

Manfred Busch passed away last year on November 25th. His death came as a total surprise to us all and we are very sad as we not only lost an active, involved colleague but a very close and dear friend.

Manfred Busch found his spiritual home in the teachings of Selfpsychology. He was well known to fellow analysts who participated with him in different workshops and seminars. He was one of the founding members and on the board of directors of the Munich Forum for New Developments in Psychoanalysis.

Last year at the meeting in Dreieich Germany, he was named as the first coordinator of the „European Federation Psychoanalytic Selfpsychology". He was really pleased and proud to obtain this post. He was to be the first editor and chief of this newsletter and with his artistic talents, he would have been perfect for the job. Unfortunately he died before his visions could be fulfilled.

He left behind a wife and two small children. We will miss him dearly.

(Hannelore and Ron Bodansky)



Important Dates within Europe

Passau Germany June 13th and 14th 1998

Basics about Self Psychology with Dr. Med Allen Siegel and Renee Siegel (Chicago)

Saturday 9:30 - 18:30
Sunday 9:30 - 18:00

Seminar Cost: 320 German Marks (includes dinner on Saturday and lunch on Sunday)

Bank: Raiffeisenbank Perlesreut Bank Account Nr. 3201961

Bank Code 740 611 01

Applications should be made to:

Eva Maria Topel Dr. Med Laurentiu Dumitrescu
Branntweinstr. 35 Marktplatz 9
94089 Neureichenau 94157 Perlesreut
Tel: 08583 / 917191 Tel: 08555 / 1330
Fax: 08583 /2716 Fax:08555 / 4296


Vienna Seminar with Robert D. Stolorow (Los Angeles) June 19th and 20th 1998

Topic: Intersubjectivity Theory as Psychoanalytic Contextualism

Vienna Circle of Psychoanalysis and Selfpsychology

Austria 1190 Vienna, Cottagegasse 53 A. Tel. 310 65 78


Zurich June 20 and 21st 1998

Workshop and Lecture with Dr. Ernest S. Wolf

Topic: Joseph Lichtenberg / Ernest Wolf

General Principles of Self Psychology: A Position Statement

Discussion of Paper and Case Presentations

Saturday 9:30 - 19:30 Sunday 9:30 - 13:00

Cost 390 German Marks Back Account „Seminar Wolf"

Bank: Sparkasse Gießen - Back Account Number 873136 - Bank Code 513 500 25

Send applications either to:

Dr. med H. P. Hartmann Dr. Med Wolfgang Milch
Psychaitric Hospital Heppenheim Clinic for Psychosomatic and Psychotherapy
Ludwigstr. 54 University of Gießen
64646 Heppenheim Frederichstr. 33
Tel. 02652 / 16210 35394 Gießen / Lahn
Telefax: 06252/ 16440 Tel. 0641 / 99-45602
Telefax: 0641 / 45609


Munich: A Debate between Dr. Med Otto Kernberg and Dr. Med Paul Ornstein

June 20th 1998

Saturday 9:00 - 18:00 in America House on Karolinenplatz Munich.

First both will give positional statements and then a case presentation by Dr. Gisela Leyting will be presented. Dr. Kernberg will present his object relationship position and Dr. Ornstein will give his self psychological position.

Cost: 120 German Marks Candidates and Students 80 German Marks

Presented by:
Munich Forum for New Developments in Psychoanalysis
René Spitz Society for the Promotion of Psychoanalysis

Application: Munich Forum for New Developments in Psychoanalysis

C/0 Bodansky, Wörthstr. 47, 81667 Munich Tel 089 / 448 2903


Bank: Hypobank Munich Bank Account Nr. 6890 30 40 50

Bank Code: 700 200 01


Katherine Nelson July 3 1998 in Munich

Flemingstr. 46 A Starting 18:00 Paper and Discussion

Topic: Temporarily Extended Self and Organization of Autobiographic Memory

See above for application.


Frank Lachmann (New York)

January 15-17 1999

Dr. Lachmann will give a lecture on Friday evening and then give a seminar with papers on Saturday and Sunday at the International Meeting Center Amalienstr. 38 Munich

See above for application.


Dr Peter Fonnagy (London)

January 29-30 1999

Dr. Fonnagy will present a lecture on Friday evening and give a seminar on Saturday.

at the International Meeting Center Amalienstr. 38 Munich

See above for application.



Dreieich Germany

6. Self Psychology Symposium with Dr. Paul and Anna Ornstein, Dr. Ernest Wolf, and Dr. Joseph Lichtenberg

June 3 - 6 1999

for details write to Dr. Milch or Dr. Hartmann (see above Zurich)





1. Meeting of the EFPS September 25 -27.9.1998

European Federation Psychoanalytic Selfpsychology

Topic: „The Present Situation of Selfpsychology in Europe"

The purpose of the first annual meeting is threefold:

  1. Scientific exchange of European Selfpsychologists
  2. Organizational questions regarding the EFPS
  3. Opportunity to meet each other and to promote communication


Congress to be held at: Hotel Modul, 1190 Wien

Congress cost ATS 1800.- (Austrian Schillings)

(incl: Room, coffee, Champagne reception on Friday evening, Saturday lunch

organizational - and translating costs)

Saturday: Harvest Evening in Sievering. Cost ATS 375.- (incl. drinks)

Hotel Cost: ATS 850.- incl. Buffet breakfast, single-room
ATS 1500.- incl. Buffet breakfast. double-room

Provisional Plan of Congress:

Friday Sept. 25, 1998

15:00 Reception

15:30 Opening Words Lecture- Plenary Session/ Discussion

16:30 Coffee break

17:00 Lecture in small groups / Discussion

18:00 Cocktails

Saturday: Sept. 26, 1998

9:30 Lecture Plenary Session/ Discussion

10:30 Coffee break

11:00 Lecture in small groups/Discussion

12:00 Lunch

15:00 Plenary Session: Impulse Lectures

16:30 Discussion

20:15 Harvest Evening in Sievering „Martinkovits"

Sunday Sept. 27, 1998

10:00 Lecture in small groups

11:00 Coffee break

11:30 Closing Plenary Session and organizational questions regarding EFPS


Planing of the 2nd meeting in Europe for 1999

We are very proud and fortunate that Dr. Lotte Köhler ( Munich) has given us permission to publish in the first Newsletter of the EFPS her „Memories of Heinz Kohut". They are very personal memories which she shares here with us.

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank Dr. Köhler for her enormous contribution, and her many years of hard work in bringing to Germany not only the theories of Heinz Kohut and Selfpsychology but also expanding our knowledge in current infant research and in development theory. She is now, not only giving seminars and lectures on attachment theory, but is also preparing a workshop on memory and psychoanalysis.

The following text is to be published in German as part of a book edited by Dr. Ludger M. Hermanns (Berlin) titled „Psychoanalyse in Selbstdarstellungen" (Psychoanalysis and Self Presentation"). Published by Edition Diskord, Tübingen Germany. This is the 4. Volume in this outstanding publication and will come out officially in the next few weeks. In this volume besides Dr. Köhler biography also Dr. Ernest Wolf will describe his career and how he became a psychoanalyst.

The following is an excerpt from Dr. Köhler´s text:



Memories of Heinz Kohut


Lotte Köhler

Heinz Kohut had a major influence on my psychoanalytic career. After an unsatisfactory training in the „Institute for Psychological Research and Psychotherapy" in Munich, René Spitz advised me to begin a completely new training. I took his advise and went to Paul Parin in Zurich for an analysis. At that time he and his colleague and friend Fritz Morgenthaler maintained a very close contact and exchange of ideas with Heinz Kohut. At that time he had not yet developed „Self Psychology" but he was looked up to as one of the leading and progressive ego psychology orientated analysts.

I met Dr. Kohut personally for the first time at a weekend seminar, in Chur Switzerland, which was organized by the Swiss Psychoanalytic Society. His clinical position, especially regarding the analysis of resistance was completely different to what we had up till then practiced. He maintained, among other things, that we should not rush to make interpretations regarding idealization. At that time I had a patient who had a very narrow minded, strict catholic upbringing. His priest had recommended to him that he undergo a psychoanalysis because he suffered an obsessive compulsive confessional symptom. He complied compulsively with the recommendation, but in the initial meeting he ridiculed psychoanalysis. Nevertheless, he was convinced that treatment with me was the correct thing for him to do and he saw me as the epitome of knowledge. During a break at the workshop I told Kohut this story. I was too afraid to ask him during a plenary session, since I was only a beginner, who had just finished her training. I told him the defensive character of the idealization was so eye striking that it had to be analyzed. He smiled and said „you should be happy about that, especially in the beginning. Without idealization it is much more difficult".

After the first meeting with Kohut, others followed but at first only on the level of reading. In 1972 Parin gave me a manuscript of the Essay „On Narcissistic Rage". I was so enthralled with it, and in order to comprehend it better, I decided immediately to translate it. The „Psyche" (major German Psychoanalytic Journal) accepted the translation right away. Käthe Hügel who was the editor at that time, wrote me very nicely that she sent the translation to Kohut and I shouldn´t get too upset if he „Kohutiazed" my good German. I didn´t hold any grudge against him. On the contrary, I was open to criticism and pleased that he scrutinized the text to see if I understood it properly - unfortunately Rosenkötter didn´t do this when he translated Kohut´s book „The Analysis of the Self" into German, with the misleading title „Narcissism", which he refused to change. Kohut told me much later, that he wrote this article in 14 days, after the height of success of his first book, during a stay in a hospital, where he he went through an extensive physical examination. I only first heard the truth after his death. He had gotten the diagnosis that he was suffering from leukemia during this examination. From that time on he knew that he was in a race with death, if he wanted to think out his thoughts and write them down.Thus, in retrospect, his behavior can be understood, which appeared at times to be monomaniac and narcissistic ego centered. He no longer had the time to occupy himself with other authors or even at times with his listeners. I attended a lecture of his in Zurich in an overfilled lecture auditorium in a guild. It was so filled that colleagues, for example von Barer, had to sit on tiled stoves. There was a great interest in what Kohut had to say, but he answered each concrete question only with the reference to empathy; he himself was not the epitome of empathy. It cost him many followers. Perhaps they would not have taken his monomania so critically if they had known of the deadly situation that he was in. He held his sickness, with the exception of his family, completely secretive.

In 1974 I invited him, in my position as director of the „René Spitz Society for the Promotion of Psychoanalysis", to give a public lecture in Munich. It was a nail-biter since we did not know how popular Kohut was and if the Auditorium Maximum of the University which had a seating capacity of over a thousand would be half empty or full. It was completely filled. The audience listened intensely to his lecture „messianic and charismatic personalities". It was clear to everyone listening the connections he was making to German history and to Hitler. It was a huge success. Because I knew how sensitive Kohut was I had prepared two introductory speeches. Either he was a still an insiders tip or he was no longer an insiders tip. I admitted this to Kohut after the lecture when we drank wine together. He laughed, was in a great mood, and gave those present autographs on the corks, from the wine bottles, and there were plenty! The next day I invited him to dinner „for the old times" at my mother´s house. She lived in a replica of the Amalien Castle (at Nymphenburg in Munich) on Lake Tegern. When we returned to Munich he embraced me and gave me a kiss on the cheeks. I was elated. I learned during the meal something about his work habits. My mother asked him how he wrote his articles. He replied that he would read them out loud to his wife Betty until she said they were good. Betty smiled: she was knitting at the time.

In 1976 Betty asked me on his behalf - I was not yet deemed worthy enough to have a personal letter exchange with Kohut - if I would like to attend a meeting of the regional Conference of the Chicago Analytic Institute on my way to a Conference on the Borderline Condition in Topeka Kansas. Heinz thought I could benefit from it. I think that in retrospect he was testing my interest in his theory. I went. I attended the study group - the topic was perversion - and I got to know the intimate inner circle of Kohut´s followers: Arnold Goldberg, Ernest Wolf, Anna and Paul Ornstein, Marianne and Paul Tolpin. Kohut explained that according to his view, in the transference what was manifested was far less conflicts but the missing structures, which the analysand attempts to replace through his use of the analyst, in that he develops a „self-object transference". Therefore, Kohut does not ask or interpret what the patient „does with him" now, but what function he has for the patient. Kohut advised accordingly not to interpret perverse behavior as resistance. One always has to ask oneself, what is proper for this patient, and where in the past did such behavior make sense. Between the participants there was a very lively discussion on the differences between narcissistic and „defense-transference".

After the conference was over, Kohut took me on a guided tour of Chicago, his excitement was contagious. It was a beautiful but cold spring day. We drove along Lake Shore Drive and he told me the names of each skyscraper and painted a picture for me how in Summer the people would lie in the grass or be playing ball. He showed me the Chicago River, which, -only in America- flowed up a mountain, because otherwise it would bring too much sewage into the lake. He showed me the artistic treasures of Chicago: Picasso, Calder and Chagall. I was deeply moved when I saw a sculpture by Henry Moore, which was constructed above the room where Fermi conducted the first underground atomic reaction. Kohut also showed me the Chicago Institute of Psychoanalysis, which was on the 23rd and 24th floor of a high-rise apartment building on North Michigan Avenue. Many analysts, Kohut included, had their practices in that building. He told me that they me every afternoon, for an hour, in the cafeteria for lunch, and had discussions („wonderful kitchen, and they prepare very good food."). At least once a week, a clinical conference was held there. The library could create envy. I saw the famous Chicago Index in the card catalogue. Kohut´s own office was tiny. From his window one could see the lake, a private airport and the Chicago skyline. Above his chair hung a picture of Aichorn, about whom he told the following story: When Kohut finished his analysis with him, Aichorn lay down on the couch and requested that Kohut take a picture of him. Kohut´s couch was a sofa which had armrests on three sides. The patients looked at a white wall and on a few small abstract pictures.

The next stop was the university. Kohut reported with warm enthusiasm, how open the discussions were between the different faculties. He lived practically on campus. Many university professors lived in same house as the Kohut´s and there was a lively exchange of ideas. After that we saw the store of his shirt tailor and the gym where he conducted his gymnastic and running exercises. We finally arrived at Kohut´s apartment which was either on the top or on the second highest floor of a fifty year old high-rise apartment house.

From the hall one could see directly through an archway, without a door, into the dinning room and through that into the living room. When one looked through the lattice windows one had a beautiful view of the Chicago skyline. The sun was setting and the curved triangular apartment houses on Lake Shore Drive with all their glass windows seem to be sparkling like gold. Kohut´s small study was packed to the brim with manuscripts. The apartment was very comfortable, furnished with taste but not with luxury. I am of the opinion that the Kohuts still had the same furniture that they had bought for their wedding or at least when they moved into this apartment, in which they had been living for many years. A fire was lit in the fireplace. We sat down and I began to ask him the questions, which I had written down. As often before, when I had asked questions in this manner, I did not get exact answers to my questions but rather a description of the behavioral relationship of the patient or even infants. The opinion that the infant is a helpless bundle and the mercy of its drives was only correct when viewed from the outside. The infant itself feels big and sees the mother as an extended arm of itself. It is false to think in categories such as good and bad objects. From the beginning of life an infant can experience short moments of itself and others. It is interesting to note that Kohut questioned the conception of primary narcissism. Instead of answering any further questions of mine he suggested that I read the introduction to his new book, in which everything was explained (unfortunately that was not the case). But in many ways what I experienced was a premiere, because I was the first to hear what he had just written. He read in a very expressive tone of voice and after every second sentence he took a sidelong glance in my direction to see what my reaction was like. He needed mirroring.

Afterwards, we had a typical American dinner. Betty Kohut returned the favor for the dinner we had with my mother „for the old times". I remember the menu: For appetizer we had shrimp cocktail, then baked turkey -which Kohut himself carved- with wild rice and broccoli, we drank an excellent American Bordeaux, and to top it all off, for dessert pistachio ice cream in a crown of meringue with hot chocolate sauce, almonds and whipped cream (translator is getting hungry!). During the meal I became somewhat dizzy, which I explained to myself as being due to the jet-lag. Kohut was of a different opinion and said it was due to what I had just heard. I asked him if I should understand his comment as an attempt to give me an interpretation, he laughed and said I wasn´t so dumb after all. After dinner we sat at the fireplace and Kohut recited with great pleasure Morgenstern´s „Galgenlieder" (Gallows Songs) in the excellent, congenial English translation of Max Knight. He then wouldn´t take no for an answer and drove me back to my hotel room. He kissed me the hand and I hugged him and gave him a kiss on his cheeks as we departed. It was a great day!

In 1978 the first Selfpsychology Conference took place in Chicago. In the following week I had 6 hours of supervision with Kohut. I discussed with him a case that I was working on for over five years and which was coming to an end. In the beginning, I was not sure if there was an oedipal or a narcissistic neurosis. In the meantime I was sure that it was a narcissistic disturbance. I wanted to learn from Kohut, how and based on what criteria would he have arrived earlier at this clear cut diagnosis. I recorded the hours on my tape recorder. The first session was for me, when I rehear the tape, catastrophic and shaming. Whenever Kohut began to lecture me in general, I interrupted him and insisted that he answer my question. That happened all the time, I should have literally taped my mouth and not the hour. In the next hour Kohut read to me what he had written down after the hour. He said, that was his way of working. He would use the 10 minute intermission between hours to write down his thoughts and commentaries and thus begin the next hour of supervision. In this manner he would create a continuity for himself and for the person being supervised. In the second hour, when I once again began to interrupt him, he said friendly but firmly „now you have to let me finish my thoughts". But he understood what I wanted and concentrated on directly answering my questions.

I was already shocked in Chicago by Kohut´s sickly appearance, but he denied that anything was wrong with him and said that he felt well. When I saw him for the last time, at the 3rd annual Selfpsychology Conference in Boston, in 1980, he had just had a by-pass operation and appeared to be physically even frailer than before. His mind was as sharp as ever, still looking for new knowledge - he was working on the manuscript of his last book.The congress had approximately one thousand participants and was a huge success and he enjoyed it, as he did the good wine at the last mutual dinner which he invited me to. And so I have kept him in my memory: the attentive look on his face when he was paying attention, with the stirring of excitement in the way he could talk, with his relishing-happy smile that would beam out of his thin face when he would be pleased about something: whether it was a progress made in thought, a work of artistic beauty, a delicacy, or a human encounter.


Translated R. Bodansky


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1999 European Schedule | EFPS Questionnaire

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European Federation Psychoanalytic Selfpsychology - Coordinating Center -
c/o Ron Bodansky
Wörthstr. 47
81667 Munich

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Tel. Office: ............................................ best telephone time....................................

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2. Special Fields of Interest, Research Interests, Specialties of Work .................................................................................................................................





If you want to get a copy of the EFPS newsletter in the future please fill out this form and transfer 50.- German Marks to the Account of the EFPS

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