Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association

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The Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, JAPA, although not the oldest psychoanalytic journal in the United States (the Psychoanalytic Review dates from 1911), is the most widely read with over 6,000 subscribers in the United States and abroad. It was inaugurated in 1953, incorporating the Bulletin of the American Psychoanalytic Association. Its mission was articulated by Robert P. Knight, then the Association's president: ". . . to select the best contributions to psychoanalysis the Editor and Editorial Board can find among submitted and solicited articles."

JAPA was founded in 1953 as the official organ of the American Psychoanalytic Association, its mission to publish scholarly articles on psychoanalytic theory, clinical practice, research, and history. The Association was very much aided in the enterprise by Dr. Abraham Kagan, then president of International Universities Press, which became the publisher of the Journal.

The first editor was John Frosch who served for 20 years with the assistance of Nathaniel Ross, who served as book editor. He was succeeded by Harold Blum, (editor, 1974-1983) and Theodore Shapiro (editor, 1984-1993). Arnold Richards, began his tenure in 1994 and served until 2003. The editor in 2004 was Steven J. Levy.

From its inception JAPA was the venue of choice for many of the most important contributors to the psychoanalytic literature. Issues in those early years included papers by Phyllis Greenacre, Charles Fisher, Kurt Eissler, Margaret Mahler, Bertram Lewin, Robert Waelder, Lawrence Kubie, Annie Reich, and Ralph Greenson. In the 1960s the Journal sponsored four monographs: Ego Psychology and the Object World by Edith Jacobson; Psychoanalytic Concepts and the Structural Theory by Jacob Arlow and Charles Brenner, and The Id and the Regulatory Principles of Mental Functioning by Max Schur. Special supplements issued during the terms of Harold Blum and Theodore Shapiro focused on female psychology (1976), psychoanalytic technique and theory of therapy (1979), defense and resistance (1983), books in review (1985), the concept of structure in psychoanalysis (1988), affect (1991), and psychoanalytic research (1993). A second supplement on female psychology, edited by Arnold Richards and Phyllis Tyson, was published in 1996.

The Journal publishes approximately 40 scholarly articles and 40 book reviews each year. JAPA has the right of refusal of all papers presented at the Fall and Midwinter meetings of the American Psychoanalytic Association and publishes summaries of each meeting's scientific panels. Several new formats have been introduced recently, including commentaries on plenary presentations and target papers. Although the majority of JAPA contributions are concerned with clinical theory and practice, the Journal also publishes papers on applied analysis, historical subjects, and empirical research. Papers are selected based on the quality of writing, scholarship, and research rather than on theoretical orientation. Since 1974 JAPA has awarded a prize endowed the Mark and Aiva Kanzer Fund to one or two of the best papers published during the year. In 1997, The Analytic Press succeeded International Universities Press as the distributor and marketer of theJournal.

New members of the editorial board of the Journal are nominated by the editorial board itself and elected by the Executive Council of the APsaA. Board members are the "peers" of the "peer review" selection process. Although JAPA is the official journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, members of the editorial board need not be members of the Association, and outside reviewers are frequently called on for their expertise in specific areas. As of 2004, the book review editors were Rosemary H. Balsam and Paul Schwaber. They were preceded by Glen Gabbard, who succeeded Otto Kernberg, who in turn took over from Nathaniel Ross.

Arnold D. Richards

See also: American Psychoanalytic Association; United States.

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Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association

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Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association