This volume is the second monograph to be published by the Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association and deals with the ubiquitous problems of identity. Identity is defined as the ability to experience one's self as something that has continuity, uniqueness, and sameness. The vicissitudes of identity have been assessed by other authors, but they have never integrated this data into orthodox psychoanalytic theory. The author brings this theme within the mainstream of psychoanalysis.
Dr. Jacobson is a brilliant clinician and is able to articulate her ideas with simplicity. She graphically harmonizes object relations, psychosexual development, and ego maturation and its role in the development of self. She redefines such basic assumptions as infantile narcissism, masochism, the distinction between ego and self, and self and object representations. She traces the development of identity from the early infantile period to the postadolescent period. To illustrate her concept she discusses her theories