Psychoanalysis: Its image and its public
February 2008, Polity
Moscovici's development of the theory of social representations has long been recognised as a major contribution to social psychology, but discussion of the theory has been limited been by the unavailability in English of the text in which he provides his most extensive presentation of the theory and demonstrates its fecundity through his empirical study of representations of psychoanalysis in France. Psychoanalysis is in many ways the founding text of the theory of social representations and is, as such, a modern classic. As well as tracing the ways in which knowledge of psychoanalysis is transformed as it is reconstructed by different social groups in French society, Moscovici provides an extensive analysis of the representations of psychoanalysis within the mass media, showing how different interests structure such communication through the different forms of propaganda, propagation and diffusion.
This book will be an indispensable text for students and scholars of social psychology. It will also be of interest to psychologists, sociologists and cultural theorists concerned with mass communication, and to all those with an interest in current perspectives in the social sciences.
- For the first time, English-speaking readers will have access to one of the most influential books published in the discipline in the past 30 years.
- Psychoanalysis, Its Image and Its Public is in many ways the founding text of the theory of social representations and is, as such, a modern classic.
- Moscovici provides an extensive analysis of the representations of psychoanalysis within the mass media, showing how different interests structure such communication through the different forms of propaganda, propagation and diffusion.
- This groundbreaking and fascinating book will be an indispensable text for students and scholars of social psychology.
Jaan Valsiner, Clark University
"This is a richly documented and vivid account of key events in the formation of an academic discipline. It shows how individuals make history, albeit not in conditions of their own making, by seeking an alternative path for the globalization of knowledge. The book traces the apparent failure of the project of rescuing a social psychology of human beings from the global diffusion of a local USA model (individualist, prescriptive, ethnocentric). Ironically, this 'invisible college' was initiated by a visionary group of US scholars mobilizing allies in Europe, Latin America, and Asia under adverse Cold-War conditions. This is an encouraging book. The project of a universally relevant social psychology will continue to inspire the quest for genuine human understanding."
Martin W. Bauer, London School of Economics
"This fascinating and important book makes out a carefully documented and persuasive case that one virtually forgotten committee, more than any other body, was responsible for shaping the international social psychology we know today. The book will be an essential source for future research on and understanding of the history of social psychology and anyone with an interest in that history really should read it."
Colin Fraser, University of Cambridge