The Infinite Question

Jonathan Lear writes:

In The Infinite Question, Christopher Bollas presents the notes from three cases, along with his own supervisory comments. The pages are printed Talmud-style, with the text of the analysand’s associations along with the analyst’s interventions in one column, and in an adjacent column Bollas’s observations on the meaning of the process as a whole. This is excellent sport. If you want, you can second-guess the analysand, the analyst and the supervisor. But, to keep the Jewish association going, it is even more fun to read the book from back to front. It has an appendix which gives the complete case notes without the supervisor’s comments. One should, I think, start there; then turn to the middle of the book, where one can reread the material along with Bollas’s comments. The introduction can be read as though it were his conclusion.

(LRB 11 March 2010)

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