Adam Blatner

Words and Images from the Mind of Adam Blatner

Table of Contents:

Social-Depth Psychology (Sociometry)

Sociometry Considered

“Sociometry” is J. L. Moreno’s term for evaluating many things about that which invisible—namely, our social network  Moreno observed something akin to x-rays, invisible social attractions and repulsions, and he proposed measuring this phenomenon. It turns out that many physical objects detected and theorized by science are hardly fully accounted for—like quarks and gluons. The […]

Sociometry for the Holidays

This is a time when we write and send greeting cards, send out and accept holiday invitations, hold parties and decide whether or not to go here or there. It’s a time that people are intuitively feeling into their social networks. These feelings are very varied!    – There are those with whom you feel […]

Sociometry—What to Teach

Sociometry is the measurement of degrees of attraction or its opposite—un-attraction?—among people. It is part of the complex of creations of Jacob L. Moreno, a born-Viennese physician who immigrated to the United States and developed psychodrama. (This is one of my interests!) Sociometry was one of this genius’ major creations, but it has been largely […]

Some Facets of Depth Psychology

  Depth psychology is my term for the complex of approaches that attend to the way that unconscious processes are a significant determinant in human behavior.  In the 20th century, Freudian and post-Freudian psychoanalysis was the most prominent exemplar, even early in that century Jung and Adler broke with Freud and pursued their visions—equally partaking […]

Sorting Yourself Out

This website posting is about the applications of sociometry, which is J. L. Moreno’s system for assessing the ways people sort themselves out, tend to form groupings of like-minded people. It’s way more complex than that—that’s the problem. We shift our loyalties depending on the criteria, the meaning of the grouping. There are some we […]

Spectrums of Mind

My son David recently wrote a book titled “Spectrums”—really a fine book—opening to the wonders of the actual range of varieties of our existence—size, intensity of energy, speed, etc. I highly recommend it, even if I’m prejudiced. It is really interesting and well-written and often uses phrasing that I find both amusing and evocative. But […]

That Old Time Throng

A theme came up on one of the list-serves I subscribe to: Where were the past meetings of our professional association? Part of me thought, “Who cares?” Another part said, “Some people: It serves a function.” After some musing, it occurred to me that it’s in a gut way pleasant to recall: There is a […]

The “Garden” as Metaphor for Selecting Friends

Only a few people resonate that much with our interests, so we should disclose ourselves more fully only to those who seem to care. Young children cannot understand this. (And it took me too long to figure this out—well through my college years and beyond!) I’ve found the following metaphor serves as a mental filtering […]

The Self Illusion

Recently I was pleased to discover a book with this title written by Bruce Hood, a professor of Developmental Psychology in Society at the University of Bristol, England. Subtitled “how the social brain creates identity,” (Oxford University Press, 2012) this book brings forth a good many aspects of psychology that are evaluated from the viewpoint […]

The Sense of Certainty vs. Doubt

Eric Berne’s theory of Transactional Analysis was more popular in the late 1960s through the 1970s. It had a number of values, one of which was popularized by a book by Thomas Harris titled “I’m Okay, You’re Okay.” The point they made was that people tended to fall into four role gradients: I’m okay, you’re […]

The Social Atom

At the risk of offending some people, I will start out by saying there is no such thing as a “social atom.” It’s a construct, an idea made up by Jacob L. Moreno. It has its uses. But also it’s what the philosopher Alfred North Whitehead called, “The fallacy of misplaced concreteness.”  Name something and […]

Thoughts on Social Depth Psychology

There are many, many dynamics going on, and Moreno’s method of sociometry helps bring to the surface. (Many papers on sociometry may be found on my website.) But just as microscopes did not reveal all that involves microbiology (e.g., viruses), so too sociometry is not the only tool for thinking about the amazing and plentiful […]

Using Sociometry Informally

My point is that it’s not necessary to do sociometry (as described in many papers). One can begin to think about one’s social network in a somewhat structured way. A few years ago, Russell Brandon wrote about Moreno (and sociometry—though he didn’t mention that word) on the internet recently ( ).    The key […]

What’s Wrong & How To Fix It

Of course this title is presumptuous, but it’s a grabber. Really, I don’t claim to address all problems, as the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz movies sang in If I Only Had a Brain: “I would answer every riddle for every individ’le….” On the other hand, I do think that a great deal of […]

Why Enactment?

Actually “doing” rather than just “thinking about” helps anchor the behavior in consciousness. Through action one mixes the thought and the intention. The mind has a tendency to be flabby, to forget what it was talking about, to dissociate just enough to go off course. We have a tendency to think we know what we’re […]

Write It Up

I fear that I am an unabashed fan of the written word. It allows one to re-read, review, contemplate, critique, expand, integrate and do all manner of other things with what is read. I’ve given classes on the technology of writing. So I am encouraging people to not just present in person what they think, […]