On an autumnal Amsterdam morning the news arrivés: One of our heroes has passed. I feel moved to a spontaneous eulogy. Next to my hero-triad Benjamin-Chodorow-Butler, there is no theorist whose work has inspired and influenced me in such a wide variety of ways in just about ALL my adult life and work. And I am not alone in this.
I first bumped into Stern's work by luck, during my clinical internship in 1987 at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center where he gave the most coherent and fascinating talk I have ever heard about the inner world of babies. He rocked my world, knocking over Mahler's autistic stage and shifting the whole process of psychosexual development from linear phases to overlapping intersubjective domains of development. I was young and green, but his 1985 book, The Interpersonal World of the Infant, was so cogent and compelling, it felt intuitively much more alive than much of the standard developmental fare I'd had in my first years of training.