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All in the mind: Adam Phillips on creativity and mental health


Filed under: Non-fiction

Adam Phillips discusses creativity and mental health with Dame Joan Bakewell.

The Cosmo Davenport-Hines Memorial Meeting

Adam Phillips was inspired to become a psychoanalyst by reading Carl Jung’s autobiography, Memories, Dreams, Reflections, but his most important influences have been literary. A regular contributor to the London Review of Books, he has been described by John Banville as ‘one of the finest prose stylists in the language’, and his thought-provoking, witty, sometimes unsettling books include On Kissing, Tickling and Being Bored, Going Sane and Side Effects. Last year, he published On Balance, an examination of how human beings manage conflicting desires, needs and motives. Interviewed by Joan Bakewell, one of the country’s most highly respected broadcasters, he reflects on the relationship between creativity and mental health, asks whether we try too hard to be happy, and explores his belief that psychotherapy is ‘a king of practical poetry’.

The Royal Society of Literature and King’s College London are grateful to Richard and Jenny Davenport-Hines for sponsoring this event in memory of their son Cosmo.

Recorded on Monday 21 November 2011.