Stone's central interests include the development of the self, empathy, narcissism, shame, envy, rage and the group-self. He is concerned with several aspects of clinical technique [and] is especially sensitive to our co-creation of so-called "difficult patients". His understanding of dreams as both personal and group products which manifest visual narratives will be of particular interest to students of the social and collective unconscious. Stone's work with narcissistic and borderline patients developed in parallel with his work with the chronically mentally ill, who are often institutionalised. He demonstrates that group therapy for such patients is not only a matter of containment and holding in the service of administrative control, but also involves interpretative work based on an understanding of the primary need for a good enough self-object. Group analysts will be able to connect these ideas with their own theories of ego training in action, the complementarity and reciprocity of transference and countertransference processes, the maintenance of an optimal balance of involvement and detachment in conducting and convening groups, and finding crucial areas of engagement between the group-as-a-whole and the members of it. This work locates aggression within the system of aggressive feelings, frustration and failures in empathy and care. Clearly, Stone has contributed to the development of an authentic relational perspective in psychoanalytical group therapy.' - From the Introduction by Earl Hopper

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