Monday 12 January 2004

Laing & Esterson: 4. The Danzigs. Inner Circle Seminar 83 (5 December 2004)

R. D. Laing
Aaron Esterson


Aaron Esterson
The Leaves of Spring:
A Study in the Dialectics of Madness (1970)

R.D. Laing and A. Esterson
Sanity, Madness and the Family:
Families of Schizophrenics (1964)
Family 4: The Danzigs

Anthony Stadlen
(12-hour) Inner Circle Seminar No. 83
Sunday 5 December 2004
10 a.m. to 10 p.m.


We believe that the shift of point of view that these descriptions both embody and demand has an historical significance no less radical than the shift from a demonological to a clinical viewpoint three hundred years ago.

Thus, in 1964, R. D. Laing and Aaron Esterson introduced their great phenomenological descriptions of eleven families of ‘schizophrenics’. But forty years on, the ‘clinical viewpoint’ still reigns supreme. Is current work on families and ‘schizophrenia’ an existential retrogression? Eleven seminars, studying each family in depth, offer an unprecedented opportunity to explore this question.

Esterson developed his investigation of the fourth family, the Danzigs, into an extraordinary book-length case study, The Leaves of Spring (1970). Anthony Stadlen was a colleague of Aaron Esterson for many years, and has continued Esterson’s method of social phenomenology in his own research and practice. Today’s 12-hour seminar is, therefore, of special importance in the series.

Venue: Room A, Acland Building, Regent’s College, London NW1 4NS
Subscription: Students £65, others £85, some bursaries, in advance
Apply to: Anthony Stadlen, 64 Dartmouth Park Road, London NW5 1SN
Tel: +44 (0)20 7485 3896 E-mail:

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