Book Launch| Interpersonal Psychoanalytic Theory for the 21st Century: Evolving Self

Please join the Alumni Association of CCNY and alumni authors--Sue Harris '62, Janet Mayes '64 and David Singer '68--for the event, which will include a slideshow and a Q & A.

Interpersonal psychoanalytic theory states that people can achieve insight into how, through interactions with people, they became who they are, and how they can change patterns of living that limit further satisfaction. People are born with a blueprint for growth and development that includes self-respect, joy, expansion of experiences, creativity, and ever widening and deepening human interactions. However, with some exceptions, the mental health profession in the United States is dictated by insurance and pharmaceutical companies, focusing primarily on symptom reduction and social conformity. These goals are inadequate. The goal, as elucidated in Interpersonal Psychoanalytic Theory for the 21st Century: Evolving Self, is maximizing one's human potential.

After “Basic Concepts” lays the groundwork, the Developmental Eras section delineates how growth takes place in stages involving interactive experiences with people. The next section, “Personality and How it Works,” includes: cognitive development, learning, consciousness and dissociation, despair versus the pressure of need, and the role of envy. Although practical applications are discussed throughout, along with short case illustrations, the next section specifically addresses psychotherapy, including dream analysis. The last section, “Issues”, brings the theory into the larger sociopolitical sphere, including how interpersonal theory relates to the development of society.

Lexington Books/Rowman & Littlefield

The Authors

Sue Harris graduated from CCNY with a B.A. in Sociology in 1962 and obtained her Ph.D. in Psychology from Columbia University Teachers College. She has been in private practice in New York City since 1968.

Janet R. Mayes graduated from CCNY with a B.A. in English in 1964 and obtained her Ph.D. From Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology, Yeshiva University. She is in private practice in New York City. She was also among the early English faculty members of the CCNY SEEK (Search for Education, Elevation and Knowledge) Department, a summary of which is in the chapter on learning in this volume.

Marilyn Miller (1939-2020) obtained her undergraduate degree in Nursing from The University of Oklahoma in 1962 and obtained her MA degree in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing from New York University. She was a certified clinical nurse specialist in adult psychiatric and mental health nursing in addition to her private practice in New York City.

David Singer graduated from CCNY with a B.A. in Economics in 1968 and obtained his Ph.D. in Psychology from New York University. He had his private practice in New York City. He also served as a clinical psychologist at Abbott House and as an adjunct assistant professor at John Jay College for Criminal Justice.


Wednesday, September 27, 2023 from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM EDT 

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Nina Ferrell 
Alumni Association of The City College of New York