Although he founded no school of his own, D. W. Winnicott (1896–1971) is now regarded as one of the most influential contributors to psychoanalysis since Freud. In over forty years of clinical practice, he brought unprecedented skill and intuition to the psychoanalysis of children. This critical new work by Adam Phillips presents the best short introduction to the thought and practice of Winnicott that is currently available.
Winnicott’s work was devoted to the recognition and description of the good mother and the use of the mother–infant relationship as the model of psychoanalytic treatment. His belief in natural development became a covert critique of overinterpretative methods of psychoanalysis. He combined his idiosyncratic approach to psychoanalysis with a willingness to make his work available to nonspecialist audiences. In this book Winnicott takes his place with Melanie Klein and Jacques Lacan as one of the great innovators within the psychoanalytic tradition.