I’ve been practicing psychoanalytic psychotherapy with adults for the past 25 years. I received my PhD from the University of Chicago and trained at the Center for Religion & Psychotherapy, where I now practice and where I have previously been the Director of Training. My first book, nominated for a Gradiva award, has just come out in a revised edition entitled Race in Psychoanalysis: Aboriginal Populations in the Mind (Routledge, 2018). I enjoy working with people who may find themselves on the margins of the social mainstream, and I’m interested in the spiritual dimension—for better and for worse—of emotional distress.
I see clients once or twice a week, and am most influenced by the relational school of psychoanalysis. This form of therapy sees our symptoms as aspects of ourselves of which we may not be fully aware; aspects which are often holdovers from earlier stages in our emotional development, where we became stymied by particular challenges which were never fully resolved. In therapy we build a relationship of trust where we can encounter and put into words the emotional “stuckness” that our symptoms represent. This helps us better resolve and integrate our challenges, and thus better engage more fully with the world around us.
Ph.D., Michigan State University, 1975. Graduate, Core Adult Program in Psychoanalysis, Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis, 2013. Faculty, Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis. 3 times President, Chicago Association for Psychoanalytic Psychology. Currently, Metro Local Area Representative, Illinois Psychological Association. Former supervisor at Department of Psychiatry, University of Chicago.
My psychoanalytic approach is a combination of Ego and Self Psychologies. In psychotherapy I may use elements of other approaches to psychotherapy as part of treatment. In general I tend to be active rather than passive in my interactions with patients.
Bilingual & bicultural (Buenos Aires, Argentina). In private practice for the past 31 years & clinical art psychotherapist supervisor at the counseling department of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago for the past five years. PhD from the Institute for Clinical Social Work (2009) and a MFA & MAAT from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (1988). I am also a professional painter with a very active and robust art practice.
My approach follows a psychodynamic model combined -when needed- with meditation, relaxation, Kundalini yoga, and art making. The combination of therapeutic tools brings an insightful-spiritual approach to the psychotherapy process.
My main focus is my work doing psychoanalytic psychotherapy and psychoanalysis. I also teach and supervise the next generation of therapists as a Professor at Northwestern University and a faculty member at the Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute. In my writing I do what is called psychobiography, looking at the lives of historical, literary, and political figure through a psychological lens. For 2017-2019 I am honored to serve as President of the Chicago Psychoanalytic Society.
I made a serious effort to explain my approach on my website. Here is part of what I wrote: “During decades as a therapist, almost all my patients came to me because they were suffering from substantial pain and their lives were not working in significant ways. My goal, as may seem obvious, is for therapy to provide healing that lessens the pain and for our efforts together to result in a life that works better.” To read more, see my description at: jameswilliamanderson.wordpress.com/clinical/
You may email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Psychoanalysis, Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, Other