It is with this quotation from Freud that Maud Mannoni began her book The Backward Child and His Mother (1972). Nearly forty years after her pioneering work was first published, these words still retain their full significance as psychoanalysts like Valerie Sinason have continued the work of extending psychoanalytic understanding to the needs of the mentally handicapped.
In 1996 twenty-five psychoanalysts from seven different countries emerged from their quiet isolation to meet for a three day conference in Belgium to exchange ideas about psychoanalysis and handicap. In February 1997, a further two-day conference was held in Paris with the financial support of the EC Association for the Research and Training on Integration in Europe.
The result of both conferences is this ground breaking book in which a renowned international group of writers including Johan De Groef and Evelyn Heinemann ontribute to a pluralistic review of the subject from the perspectives of Freud, Klein, Bion, Winnicott, Lacan and Mannoni
This is the first theoretical and clinical reader on psychoanalysis and mental handicap. It is an excellent introduction and orientation for students and professionals and will be of interest to special education teachers, psychoanalysts, psychotherapists, mental health students and parents.