THE LISTENING HEART by Jane R. Mayer

THE LISTENING HEART

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Edited by Lucy Freeman, who saw the light and has been beaming it to a popular public ever since, and whose endorsement here is something of an imprimatur, this is a letter and answer analysis between Beth (the analysand) and Jana (the therapist) over a period of about three years. It raises one or two points: can an analysis, except your own, be really fascinating to others (certainly Lucy Freeman's was- judging by its success); and can an analysis in this form, Dear Jane, Dear Beth, avoid the unfortunate association with a lovelorn column. Love is certainly the main point of discussion and treatment here- Beth is widowed, and at the opening of the correspondence is indulging herself in drinking, overeating and promiscuity. In time, under guidance, she realizes the self-destructive pattern she pursues, her compensation for a love not given her by her parents or her husband. She is also not able to reciprocate- most evident in her spotty relationship with her only son. From many men, inferior, unmarriageable, she begins to shift her needs and aims, and with the maturity acquired through this period of self-recognition, finds a man who offers her a complete relationship... Readers, who are not dedicated, or vicariously interested (there are many intimate revelations), may tire.

Pub Date: May 23rd, 1961
Publisher: Crown