Unlocking Creativity Through Psychoanalysis

Psychoanalysis & Creativity

Psychoanalysis is a way of understanding people and a deep, insight-oriented form of treatment.

Patient and analyst work together to explore conscious and unconscious factors which create unhappiness in the form of painful symptoms, instability of mood and self-esteem, and difficulties in love and work. Insight and healing happen through a careful and empathic examination of the patient’s free thoughts, feelings, dreams, and emerging relationship with the analyst.



To learn more about creativity or psychoanalysis, consider visiting the following web sites:

North Carolina Psychoanalytic Society

North Carolina Psychoanalytic Foundation

American Psychoanalytic Association

American Psychological Association

Psychoanalytic Research Society


Many of the following books are included in the Foundation’s reference library, which is open to the public by appointment on weekdays. For information, call (919) 677-9888 or email info@ldf.org.


Arieti, Silvano.
Creativity – The Magic Synthesis. Basic Books, Inc., 1976.

Deri, Susan K.
Symbolization and Creativity.
 International Universities Press, Inc., 1984.

Gedo, John E.
Portraits of the Artist. The Guilford Press, 1983.

Grolnick, Simon A., Leonard Borkin,
and Werner Muensterberger (eds.).

Between Reality and Fantasy. Jason Aaronson, 1978.

Kavaler-Adler, Susan.
The Compulsion to Create. Routledge, 1993.

Kubie, Lawrence S. 
Neurotic Distortion of the Creative Process.
 University of Kansas Press, 1958.

May, Rollo. 
The Courage to Create.
 W.W. Norton & Co., Inc., 1975.

Milner, Marion (or Joanna Field). 
On Not Being Able to Paint.
 Jeremy P. Tarcher, Inc., Los Angeles, Distributed by St. Martin’s Press, 1957.

Oremland, Jerome.
The Origins and Psychodynamics of Creativity, A Psychoanalytic Perspective. International Universities Press, Inc., 1980.

Rose, Gilbert J.
Necessary Illusion: Art as “Witness”: Resonance and Attunement to Forms and Feelings,International Universities Press, Inc., 1996.

Rose, Gilbert J.
The Power of Form – A Psychoanalytic Approach to Aesthetic Form. International Universities Press, 1980.

Rose, Gilbert J. 
Trauma and Mastery in Life and Art.
 Yale University Press, Inc., 1987.

Rothenberg, Albert. 
Creativity and Madness.
 The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1990.

Rothenberg, Albert. 
The Emerging Goddess.
 The University of Chicago Press, 1979.

Socarides, Charles W. and Selma Kramer (eds.).
Work and Its Inhibitions, Psychoanalytic Essays. International Universities Press, Inc., 1996.

Vaillant, George E. 
Adaptation to Life.
 Little, Brown and Company, 1977.

Winnicott, D.W. 
Playing and Reality.
 Chapman and Hall, 1989.