University Press of America
Trim: 6⅜ x 9¼
978-0-7618-6041-9 • Hardback • December 2012 • $81.00 • (£62.00)
978-0-7618-6440-0 • Paperback • December 2014 • $48.99 • (£38.00)
978-0-7618-6042-6 • eBook • December 2012 • $46.50 • (£33.00)
Paolo Azzone is a psychiatrist and a psychoanalyst. He works at the G. Salvini Hospital in Milan, Italy. Azzone substantially contributed to the establishment of a psychotherapy research tradition in Italy, with empirical studies on the psychotherapy process and on dreams. His current interests include psychoanalytic treatment of depression and the intersections between psychoanalysis and philosophy, history, and religious experience. He is co-editor of La mente dell’anima (The Mind of Soul), 2008.
Part I: Historical Facts: Depression and Other Socially Shared Representations of Pain in Western Civilization
Chapter One: Sadness and Black Bile
Chapter Two: Sadness, Error and Sin
Chapter Three: Sadness and Human Societies
Part II: Clinical Facts
Chapter Four: Looking through a Distortive Mirror: Descriptive Psychopathology of Depression from a Psychoanalytic Perspective
Chapter Five: Encountering Depression in the Context of Mental Health Services: The Contribution from Psychoanalytic Literature
Part III: The Model
Chapter Six: A Model of the Process of Formation of Depressive Symptoms
Chapter Seven: Epistemological Observations
Azzone offers, in this compact book, a superb overview of the interpretation and treatment of depression. The book's strength resides in its historical and theoretical contextualization of depression, from the ancient to modern psychoanalytic and psychotherapeutic approaches. The first part of the book comprises three chapters treating depression as a social and spiritual problem with serious implications for how clinicians should approach this mental illness. Special attention is paid to medieval understandings of depression. The second part takes up the clinical aspects of depression from the psychoanalytic perspective, and summarizes how psychoanalysis contributes to contemporary psychotherapeutic and psychodynamic approaches. The final part offers a model for comprehending the formation of depressive symptoms. Depression is conceptualized as above all a psychic problem. This book will be of immense value to clinicians and students of psychotherapy, especially those who practice from psychodynamic perspectives. The book fills a gap in the literature on depression such that to overlook Azzone's contribution is to risk ignoring the most significant rethinking of depression in the history of modern analysis. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduate, graduate, research, and professional collections.
— Choice Reviews
In essence, this book offers many interesting insights on an as yet enigmatic disorder and can be a stimulating reading not only for psychoanalysts and psychoanalytic psychotherapist, but for all readers interested in the historical evolution and in the descriptive psychopathology of the 'dark illness.'
— State of Mind
…the author is championing a psychoanalytic conceptualization of humanity, suffering, and depression that is not at all confined to the measurable, rational, predictable, or concrete.
Azzone’s clinical illustrations are organized around his…well-defined theoretical concepts and psychoanalytic methods.
…his work is unique because he frames his understanding of depression within a larger philosophical, historical, and cultural human history. Azzone’s conclusion that depression is best understood as a psychoanalytic problem is thus far from a baseless, parochial claim.
I highly recommend Azzone’s book to all clinicians….I recommend this book to scholars, journalists, and historians. All will be impressed to see the application of some of our greatest works so skillfully applied to the contemporary psychoanalytic practice of treating depression.
— Patricia L. Gibbs; The Psychoanalytic Quarterly, Vol. 84, Issue 2