The Distance Cure Wins Courage to Dream Book Prize

12 May, 2022

The Distance Cure Wins Courage to Dream Book Prize

Congratulations to Hannah Zeavin for receiving the Courage to Dream Book Prize for her book The Distance Cure: A History of Teletherapy (MIT Press, 2021)!

The Courage to Dream book prize is awarded by the American Psychoanalytic Association to the book that best promotes the integration of the academic and clinical worlds of psychoanalysis.

The Distance Cure is a transnational social history of therapies deployed beyond the classic consulting room. Starting with a reading of epistolary conventions and Freud’s treatments-by-mail, her book shows that teletherapy, far from being a recent invention, is at least as old as psychoanalysis itself. Subsequent chapters demonstrate that psychotherapy has always operated through multiple communication technologies and media, including the letter, newspaper columns, radio broadcasts, crisis hotlines, the earliest mainframe networks, home computing, and now mobile phones. Teletherapy provides a unique frame for examining our pressing concerns, both theoretical and ethical, about the impact of technology on clinical and social relationships. While teletherapy promises the extension of access to mental healthcare beyond the consulting room for those who don’t have the means to frequent it, the reality is, of course, more complicated: care can quickly become a pernicious backdoor for surveillance and disrupt ethical standards important to the therapeutic relationship. At the same time, The Distance Cure contends that technologized mental health produces medium-specific forms of “distanced intimacy” which, rather than simply undermining embodied togetherness and attachment, also allow for unexpected kinds of communication.

To order this book at your local bookstore and online, please visit here for more information!

And check it out here for the full list of winners for Courage to Dream Book Prize.