Harry R. Brickman, MD PhDhbrickma[at]ucla.edu
Emeritus Training and Supervising Analyst, New Center for Psychoanalysis, Los Angeles
Setting the stage
Welcome to my website. It is under revision at present.
I am Harry Brickman, Clinical Professor, UCLA Psychiatry. Instead of the usual photo of a professorial-type beaming confidently at you with cluttered bookshelves as a background, I chose a snapshot taken in the late 1980's during a visit to an animal orphanage near Mt. Kenya. The little critter I am holding is one of our evolutionary cousins, a nocturnal primate called a "bush baby".
I chose the photo to convey a facet of me that is caring, protective, and delighted with this special opportunity to hold a primate other than one of our own species for a change.
I am a physician and psychoanalyst as well as a husband, a father, and a grandfather. Figurative 'holding' is what we do with many of our patients in longer-term depth psychotherapy. I've been doing this kind of psychological holding with a substantial number of patients for almost 60 years since I graduated from NYU Medical College, did my internship in Fresno CA, and began my psychiatric residency at the Menninger complex in Topeka, Kansas. One of my mentors at that time, Dr. Karl Menninger, told me that anyone who has had good psychiatric and psychoanalytic education and then confines their career exclusively to office practice comes close to wasting their training.
Although I cannot agree with such a generalization, I nevertheless seized upon his perspective as encouraging my boundary-vaulting interests. I must emphasize, however, that working clinically with my patients in my private office has been a privilege that I would never have forsaken in favor of my other, ultimately subordinate, interests. For obvious reasons of professional confidentiality, I will not refer to specifics of my clinical activities on a webpage. Along with many privileged years of clinical practice which continue as of this writing, I have initiated several public psychiatric programs including a large metropolitan public community mental health department, held professorships at UCLA and USC, and served as dean of a psychoanalytic training institute.