Pathologies of the Self explores both narcissistic disturbance and borderline states. For several decades of clinical practice, Phil Mollon has explored and pondered the nature and structure of identity as a core aspect of what drives human action. We are collectively trapped in images, either of our own choosing, or imposed on us by others. These illusions of “self shape” how we think, feel, and behave and are seemingly necessary for our functioning in society.
Some of us become invested in grandiose self-images, consistently sacrificing perceptions of truth and reality in the service of maintaining these fictions. In such states, we are blind to both the subjectivity of others and to the deeper and more authentic aspect of self. Narcissism affects all human beings, and its thematic tentacles enter all forms of psychotherapy. In this fascinating text, the author explores narcissistic phenomena both inside and outside the clinic, revealing the range of its impact in all our lives, and the “narcissistic agents” who engage in coercive and controlling modes of relating in order to preserve and protect our fragile selves.
“One of the most original thinkers in the mental health profession, Dr Phil Mollon has written a rich and readable portrait of the complexities of narcissistic and borderline states of mind. Drawing upon a generous range of psychological theories and clinical data, Mollon has provided us with a veritable master class, illuminating these deeply troubling – indeed malignant – features of the human personality.” Professor Brett Kahr, Senior Fellow, Tavistock Institute of Medical Psychology, London, and Visiting Professor of Psychoanalysis and Mental Health, Regent’s School of Psychotherapy and Psychology, Regent’s University London