Lunch and Lecture: David Ritchie
"How many types of smiles are there?": Affective Communication in Walter Benjamin, D.W. Winnicott, Barbara Johnson, and Silvan Tomkins
February 14 2013
This paper will examine the conception developed in Ed Tronick’s paper, “Emotions and Emotional Communication in Infants,” that the infant and caretaker form “an affective communication system” as way of access to the dynamism of infant developmental processes. To accomplish this, works by Walter Benjamin, Barbara Johnson, D.W. Winnicott and Silvan Tomkins will be drawn upon to elaborate a theoretical context in which the questions raised by Tronick’s research can be approached from new angles. Of primarily interest will be the possibility of uncovering a theory of reading and writing that may already underwrite the affective communication that occurs between infant and caretaker.
David Ritchie’s work and fields of interest include Deconstruction, Psychoanalysis, Aesthetics, Affect Theory, Political Theory, and Queer Theory. Within these fields, he concentrates on major figures such as Derrida, Nietzsche, Benjamin, Winnicott, Melanie Klein, Silvan Tomkins and Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick. Focusing primarily on American literature, his work deploys a variety of critical tool sets in an elaboration of affect literary studies.
Workshop: "In Context: Two Presentations on Psychodynamic Treatments in Context" Two interdisciplinary and inter-institutional half-day workshops on psychodynamic treatments
March 23 2013
Workshop 1: David Mintz: "Psychodynamic Psychopharmacology: Applying Practical Psychodynamics to Improve Pharmacologic Outcomes"
The problems our patients face are many and varied. Disturbances in brain chemistry, broken lives, distorted expectations, and pathological adaptations often combine to produce psychiatric difficulties that are not solved simply with medications, and call for attention to more than one level of the bio-psycho-social spectrum. However, in recent decades, mainstream psychiatric dialogue has been dominated by a largely reductionistic biomedical perspective. The evidence bases that connect psychodynamic and psychosocial factors with medication response have tended to be sequestered outside of mainstream psychiatric journals. The neglect of these evidence bases and the adoption of a largely non-integrative model is likely a significant source of the current epidemic in treatment resistance. The workshop presents a model of integrated treatment that can address psychosocial resistances to healthy use of medications, promoting improved outcomes in treatment resistant populations. The workshop will first describe oft-ignored evidence bases that connect meaning and medications. Then it will explore common psychodynamics of treatment resistance, particularly in relation to medications. Finally, technical principles for integrating psychodynamics with prescribing (or not prescribing) will be elucidated.
David Mintz, MD is a graduate of the University of Miami School of Medicine and the Cambridge Hospital/Austen Riggs Center Combined Residency Program. He completed a Fellowship in Psychodynamic Psychotherapy at the Austen Riggs Center, where he remained on staff and is Director of Psychiatric Education. He is on the Education Committee of the American Academy of Psychoanalysis and Dynamic Psychiatry and also serves on the Medical Student Education Committee of the American Psychoanalytic Association.
Workshop 2: John Muller, Francoise Davoine, and Jean-Max Gaudillière: "Psychosis as Communication: The Semiotics of Showing"
In this session we will develop a semiotic perspective on psychosis through the operation of different types of signs. By better understanding how signs produce effects in our work with patients, we are given a wider array of possible responses in difficult moments. We will see how this perspective offers an introduction to the work of Francoise Davoine and Jean-Max Gaudilliere, leading figures in the movement linking psychosis and the trauma of war. In their work they highlight how the patient who can’t speak must show what the therapist must learn to see for treatment to proceed.
John P. Muller, PhD is Director of Training at the Austen Riggs Center. He is the author of Beyond the Psychoanalytic Dyad: Developmental Semiotics in Freud, Peirce, and Lacan. He is the co-editor of Lacan and Language and of The Purloined Poe and has published over 40 articles and chapters in the field of semiotics and psychoanalysis. He is coordinator of the Lacanian Clinical Forum, and has presented his work nationally and internationally. He is a founding member of the Berkshire Psychoanalytic Institute. Dr. Muller graduated from the Boston Psychoanalytic Institute and received his PhD from Harvard University.
Francoise Davoine, PhD and Jean-Max Gaudillière, PhD have worked as consultants at a public psychiatric hospital and in private practice. They are currently professors at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris and both hold advanced degrees in classics (French, Latin, and Greek literature) and doctorates in sociology. They are the authors of History Beyond Trauma.
Sponsored by The Atlanta Psychoanalytic Society and the Emory University Psychoanalytic Studies Program.
“Lacan’s Drive and the Posthuman: The Example of Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake”
April 4 2013
John Johnston is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Emory, where he teaches literature and science, media theory and technology. He is the author of Carnival of Repetition, Information Multiplicity, and The Allure of Machinic Life, and the editor of literature, media, information systems, a collection of essays by media theorist Friedrich Kittler. He is currently working on a book about milieu, network, and agency in late 20th and early 21st century fiction.
Lunch and Lecture: Taylor Adkins
“Huxley contra Freud: Utopic Civilization and Its Dyscontents”
April 17 2013
Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World (1932) depicts a future utopia whose ironic vision of modernity and its fate constitutes both a literary thought-experiment and consequently a critique. Although Freud’s name, among many others, appears in Huxley’s text only momentarily, the very reference belies the extent to which the critique that Brave New World proposes is addressed to the texts of the ‘father’ of psychoanalysis. In this talk I propose to follow this labyrinth of intertextuality with the guiding thread of three of Freud’s works that would have been contemporary with Huxley: Beyond the Pleasure Principle (1920), Future of an Illusion (1927) and Civilization and Its Discontents (1930). The texture of this thread concerns the problematic status of Freud’s standardized translations in the English language. In order to shed light on how Huxley specifically re-reads a number of Freud’s concepts against themselves in the gesture of ironic critique, I intend to formulate the essence of their encounter vis-à-vis the status of the standard translation and its formative influence over the structure of Brave New World’s utopia. Towards this end, the thrust of re-reading Huxley’s text provides the occasion to re-read Freud’s usage of certain terms (Trieb, Befriedigung, Anlehnung, etc.) and to clarify the stakes of their distinction in light of their stratified translation and their literary transformation.
Taylor Adkins is a student in Comparative Literature at Emory University. He is the translator of Félix Guattari’s The Machinic Unconscious: Essays in Schizoanalysis (Semiotext(e), 2011) and of François Laruelle’s Dictionary of Non-Philosophy and Philosophy and Non-philosophy, both of which are forthcoming in May (Univocal, 2013).
Clinical Workshop: “An Introduction to Kleinian Positions and Splitting”
April 30 2013
Bruce Rudisch, MD, is a member of the Psychoanalytic Faculty and Teaching Analyst at the Emory University Psychoanalytic Institute and Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor in the Emory University Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences.
Lunch and Lecture: Jordan Stewart-Rozema
“Leaning on Freud's Drive Theory: Laplanche on Instinct and Anaclisis”
October 29 2013
Jordan Stewart-Rozema is a second year in the Philosophy department, and her areas of focus are psychoanalysis and phenomenology. This paper arose out of an ongoing interest in examining sexuality as a structural framework that undergirds and guides lived experience.
Lunch and Lecture: Kate Davies
“A Fictional Cogito: The Problem of Unity and Time in Lacan, Descartes, Freud, and Plato”
November 19 2013
Katherine Davies is a third year PhD student in the philosophy department. Her interests include ontologies of creativity, the intersection of ethics and aesthetics, philosophy of literature, friendship, phenomenology, and psychoanalysis. She is currently planning a dissertation on the relation of poetry and poetic language to ontological, philosophical concerns invoking Plato, Emerson, and Heidegger as central contributing figures.
“Oedipus and PTSD: No Space to Dream up Revenge! Dissociation, Enactments, and Fantasy in Psychoanalysis”
November 21 2013
How can we access traumatic experiences that are only partially “known” to us, either as cognitive memory fragments or as an emotional “feel”, or not even “known” in any symbolic form? This presentation discusses “brain-freeze” in the context of multi-modality-coding and sub-symbolic processing. Two clinical case studies will illustrate how psychoanalysts go beyond words and use the structure of a patient’s syntax, melody of speech, images and feelings as they are enacted in the therapeutic relationship to reach and process “unspeakable”, dissociated traumata.
Dr. Yudit Jung, Ph.D., LCSW, is a psychoanalyst with a relational perspective. She is a faculty member at the Emory University Psychoanalytic Institute (EUPI) and Adjunct faculty in the Department of Psychiatry at Emory University. Dr. Jung earned her Ph.D. in Social Sciences from Frankfurt University, Germany. She then completed two psychoanalytic training programs: the NYU Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis, Department of Clinical Psychology, and the New York Freudian Society (now called the Contemporary Freudian Society) Training Program in Psychoanalysis. Dr. Jung is also certified in Psychoanalysis by APsaA, a necessary pre-requisite to be a Training- and Supervising analyst. Presently she serves on APsaA’s Certification Committee. She is a member of the IPA. (International Psychoanalytic Association) Also of note, Dr. Jung has worked extensively with Holocaust, War and Family trauma survivors. Dr. Jung is in private practice in Decatur, Georgia, and uses a combination of introspective-psychodynamic as well as cognitive-behavioral techniques in her work with trauma victims.
Lunch and Lecture: Mairead Sullivan
“Death Becomes Queer. Or, Queer Theory's Death Drive”
December 4 2013
If early queer theory was primarily concerned with the analytic separation or imbrication of gender and sexuality, more recently queer theory has turned to questions on the status of the social and temporality in queer life. In particular, there has been increased attention over the past decade to the so-called anti-social thesis. The "anti-social thesis" has staked the queer as the harbinger of social negativity through the refusal of reproductive futurity and the jouissance of anal erotics. Such claims, however, circulate around a specific reading of the Freudo-Lacanian death drive at the expense of other engagements with psychoanalytic thinking of negativity, specifically that of Melanie Klein. How does an attention to the Kleinian death drive disrupt the Freudo-Lacanian inheritances of the "anti-social thesis?"
Lunch and Lecture: Gina Stamm
“What is the (')use(') of 'the use of an object?'”
February 1 2012
This paper explores how D.W. Winnicott's paper "The Use of an Object and Relation Through Identifications" develops the concept of the object for Winnicott, which is most often associated with his early work on the transitional object. What is, then, the use of an object for the subject? As the title suggests, this question is more complicated than it might at first seem, and we will need to ask both what kind of relationship is established through 'use', and what is the object 'good for'? In the latter sense, what is the use of this essay itself-for Winnicott's project, and for psychoanalysis as a whole?
Gina Stamm is a second year graduate student in the Department of French and Italian. She studies late modernist narrative and film, as well as psychoanalysis, with a concentration on object relations theory.
Seminar: "Louise Bourgeois' Memory Cells"
February 22 2012
“Art is experience, the re-experience of trauma,” Louise Bourgeois writes in her diaries. Bourgeois’s “cells” (the series of installations or “mises-en-scène” she manufactured in the 1990s and that stood out in the retrospective held at the Guggenheim Museum in New York in 2008) are striking examples of remembered pain and of a powerful convergence between remembrance and art making – a convergence used by many critics to explain her works. Rather than focusing on the interpretation of chosen “Cells”, this presentation analyzes them as thought-provoking examples of symbolization and of the complex relation between memory-work and aesthetics. Not only do Bourgeois’s “Cells” invite us to consider what Freud called the "plastic nature” of autobiographical memory, they also put into question the standard biographical interpretations ascribed to them, since they prompt trans-subjective processes of remembrance that involve the viewers of her “Cells” and not just the artist herself.
Co-sponsors: the Hightower Fund, the Center for Mind, Brain and Culture, the Department of French and Italian, The Bill and Carol Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry, the Department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, the Department of Art History, the Department of Comparative Literature, the English Department, the Program in Linguistics, the Graduate Institute of Liberal Arts.
Lecture: "In Search of the Creative Brain: Frederic Chopin and George Sand"
February 23 2012
This lecture will focus on the intersection between aesthetics and neuroscience, and draw on my research for my book-in-progress, The Graphological Impulse. Relying on “documents” of creative work, textual and musical, that emerged in an unusually productive summer Chopin and Sand spent in the countryside, I present, in a first part, an analysis of the emergence of two artworks in a blend of phenomenological and formal perspectives. The archive I use is, crucially, that of handwritten materials, which enable us to trace a creative process. The simultaneous emergence of two masterpieces of composition in related genres (music and lyrical prose) begs the question of the role played by the environment in this creative process. Capitalizing on the current “ecological” explanations for creativity fostered by advances in the neurosciences, I offer suggestions as to how recent scientific research on synesthesia or on unconscious processes, as well as models of brain plasticity, might help us analyze these exceptional creative experiences. Meanwhile, if the creative gesture can be recast in terms of mind-brain/body, then the question arises of how a material, embodied practice of creation driven by a hand that applies pen to paper participates and intervenes in the short-of-miraculous production of two masterpieces of modern art. This return to a graphological paradigm opens up, in conclusion, a set of questions about the value of a dialogue between literary/philosophical approaches to the process of composition and those we owe to recent advances in the neurosciences and cognitive sciences.
Co-sponsors: the Hightower Fund, the Center for Mind, Brain and Culture, the Department of French and Italian, The Bill and Carol Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry, the Department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, the Department of Art History, the Department of Comparative Literature, the English Department, the Program in Linguistics, the Graduate Institute of Liberal Arts.
Dr. Evelyne Ender is Professor of French and Comparative Literature at CUNY’s Graduate Center and Hunter College in New York City. Her numerous publications have included investigations into the history of mental illness and the construction of gender in Victorian era, authoritative interpretations of the works of numerous late-nineteenth and early twentieth-century literary figures, and, since the mid-nineties, sustained engagements with contemporary research on the neuroscience of memory, the psychoanalysis of trauma, and the status of eye-witness testimony of historical events. Dr Ender is the author of: Sexing the Mind: Nineteenth Century Fictions of Hysteria (Cornell University Press, 1995) and Architexts of Memory: Literature, Science, and Autobiography (University of Michigan Press, 2005), which received considerable acclaim from audiences both in the sciences and in the humanities, and was awarded the Modern Language Association’s prestigious Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for Comparative Literary Studies.
"A Psychoanalytic Approach to Trauma"
April 17 2012
Dr. Levy will review Freud’s earliest thinking about the nature of trauma and its consequences. He will relate these ideas to more contemporary psychoanalytic perspectives as well as note their connection to neurobiological findings. Finally, he will present a clinical case that illustrates important perspectives regarding the treatment of trauma victims.
Dr. Steven Levy is the Bernard Holland Professor of Psychiatry at Emory, former director of the Emory University Psychoanalytic Institute and the current editor of the Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association.
Lunch and Lecture: Asher Haig
"Interface Dynamics: The Artificial Intelligence of Comparative Literature”
April 20 2012
Interface dynamics concerns the status of the real when no coordinates are provided to consider what “the real” might mean. How can such a real be thought?
Asher Haig is a Ph.D candidate in the Department of Comparative Literature.
“Telling Showing, Doing: The Poetics and Politics of Fiction”
April 25 2012
Jacques Rancière is one of the most prominent philosophers writing today. Since the late 1960’s, Rancière has elaborated a complex political theory of democratic emancipation and redefined the very notions of “politics” and “aesthetics” by arguing that they are inextricably tied to each other. In his investigation of politics and aesthetics, he has repeatedly crossed the boundaries between disciplines. His work has had a wide-ranging impact on fields as diverse as philosophy, politics, the visual arts, literature, history, media studies, and pedagogy. Over the last decade or so, he has become one of the most cited and influential thinkers in the humanities. He is Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at the University of Paris VIII and Professor of Philosophy at the European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland. His translated works are, among others: The Nights of Labor: The Workers' Dream in Nineteenth-Century France (1989); The Ignorant Schoolmaster: Five Lessons in Intellectual Emancipation (1991); The Names of History: On the Poetics of Knowledge (1994); On the Shores of Politics (1995); Disagreement: Politics and Philosophy (1998); The Politics of Aesthetics: The Distribution of the Sensible (2004); Film Fables (2006); The Future of the Image (2007); Hatred of Democracy (2007); The Aesthetic Unconscious (2009); The Emancipated Spectator (2009); Dissensus: On Politics and Aesthetics (2010); Chronicles of Consensual Times (2010); The Politics of Literature (2011); Staging the People: The Proletarian and His Double (2011).
Sponsored by The Department of French and Italian Cosponsored by the Departments of Art History, Comparative Literature, English, Film and Media Studies, Philosophy, the Institute of Liberal Arts, the Psychoanalytic Studies Program, the Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry, and the Hightower Fund.
Jean Michel Rabaté
"Crimes against fecundity: Style and Crime from Joyce to Poe and back”
April 26 2012
Linking the ideas of style and crime, Professor Rabaté will examine the "Oxen of the Sun" episode of Joyce’s Ulysses via the theoretical lenses of Wolfgang Iser and Jacques Rancière before moving to Poe's notion of a crime that can be detected merely by "reading".
Seminar: "Freud's Textual Couch, or the Ambassadors' magic carpet"
April 27 2012
Taking up the central thesis of Pierre Bayard’s Can One Apply Literature to Psychoanalysis? in order to refute it, Professor Rabaté will argue using one central image, that of The Ambassadors as painted by Holbein, evoked by Henry James's novel, in connection with the carpet on Freud's couch.
Jean Michel Rabaté is a Gregorian Professor in the Humanities and Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Pennsylvania.
Presented by The Graduate Speakers Committee in the Department of Comparative Literature, with Hightower Fund, the Psychoanalytic Studies Program, the Department of French and Italian, the Institute for Liberal Arts, and the Graduate Student Council.
“The Shibboleth of Cross-Cultural Issues in Psychoanalytic Treatment”
September 20 2012
Dr. Snyder is Clinical Associate Professor (Yale University School of Medicine), Professor (University of Sichuan, Sichuan, China) and the Founder and President of the China American Psychoanalytic Alliance (CAPA) a non-profit organization that develops and promotes mental health services in China, trains Chinese mental health professionals as psychodynamic psychotherapists, and provides them with psychoanalytic and psychotherapeutic treatment. Dr. Snyder has extensively written and lectured on psychoanalysis, including many papers and interviews on psychoanalysis and China. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Psychoanalytic Association, of the Western New England Psychoanalytic Society & Institute, a member of the International Psychoanalytic Association, a Board Member of the ACPE and the Managing Editor of TAP.
Co-sponsored by the Hightower Fund, Halle Institute of Global Learning and the Emory University Psychoanalytic Institute.
"Old Wine in New Bottles?" Nineteenth Century Electrotherapy, Psychoanalysis and the Newest Approaches to the Treatment of Mental Illness in the United States"
November 29 2012
Dr. Sander L. Gilman is a distinguished professor of the Liberal Arts and Sciences as well as Professor of Psychiatry at Emory University. A cultural and literary historian, he is the author or editor of over eighty books. His research interests include History of Medicine, History of Psychiatry, Jewish Cultural Studies, Visual Studies, European Comparative Literary Studies, and Cultural History. He is particularly well known for his contributions to Jewish studies and the history of medicine.
Robert A. Paul
"Solitude in Buddhism and in Psychoanalysis: The Case of Milarepa"
February 4, 2011
Attachment and its opposite, solitude, are central topics of concern in both Buddhism and Psychoanalysis, but with very different values in each system of thought. The idea of solitude as a positive virtue, along with the benefits of discarding all attachments, are themes central to the life story and poetic works of the great medieval Tibetan Yogi and poet Milarepa. In this paper, both a Buddhist and a psychoanalytic perspective are brought to bear on aspects of the great saint's life and thought.
Robert A. Paul Ph.D., Charles Howard Candler Professor of Anthropology and Interdisciplinary Studies, Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and board certified psychoanalyst. His extensive scholarly publications include The Tibetan Symbolic World (University of Chicago Press, 1982), Moses and Civilization: The Meaning Behind Freud's Myth (Yale University Press, 1996) that received the Heinz Hartmann Award in Psychoanalysis, the L. Bryce Boyer Award in Psychological Anthropology, and the National Jewish Book Award in the are of Jewish Thought. He also edited a special issue of Cultural Anthropology entitled Biological and Cultural Anthropology at Emory University, and served for many years as editor of ETHOS: Journal of the Society for Psychological Anthropology.
Lunch and Lecture: Patrick Blanchfield
"Ordinary Unhappiness, Everyday Samsara"
February 25 2011
Samsara, a Sanskrit and Pali term which translates as "continuous movement" or "continuous flowing", refers to the concept of a cycle of birth, and consequent decay and death, in which all beings in the universe participate, and which can only be escaped through enlightenment. Patrick's talk will address the role of psychoanalysis in relation to a pursuit of Buddhist modes of knowledge. In particular, it will examine the necessary relationship between analytic engagements and "normal everyday experience."
Patrick Blanchfield is a 4th year Graduate Student in Emory's Department of Comparative Literature. His work engages the intersection of the Psychoanalytic sciences, literary theory, studies of perception and cognition, and studies in religion, particularly in relation to Buddhism.
Françoise Davoine. & Jean-Max Gaudillière
Seminar: “Bion - Quichotte: Taming Wild Thoughts”
March 2 2011
From the War Memoirs to A Memoir of the Future, we intend to follow Wilfred Bion's personal path from the experience of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to the articulation of theoretical and practical formulas capable of opening the field of trauma and madness to the psychoanalytic transference and its handling. Both Bion and Cervantes developed a theory of madness after experiencing war traumas. Both were veterans: Bion from WWI; Cervantes from the battles fought against the Turks and from slavery. Both developed in their works (one through fiction, the other through clinical practice and psychoanalytic theory) ways to “tame wild thoughts” (Bion) thanks to a talking cure that takes place, in Don Quixote, with Sancho Pança. As was argued in Don Quichotte, pour combattre la mélancolie, transference (in cases of madness and trauma) is addressed to a therapist who, following the Greek etymology (therapôn), takes the place of the second in combat.
Lecture: “The Political Outcomes of Trauma”
March 3 2011
Trauma - war traumas or domestic traumas - can be defined by betrayal: one is betrayed either by those in position of command (see Jonathan Shay, Achilles in Vietnam) or by one’s people. All trustworthy otherness is in jeopardy, a condition that fosters the destruction of the dimension of the subject. As an outcome, psychotic symptoms develop as an attempt to fight distorted perverse social links. Examples will be taken from our clinical practice to show how one can get out of this dead-end. A forthcoming book (Stock) on Don Quixote is devoted to this question: A bon entendeur, salut!
Dr. Françoise Davoine Ph.D. and Dr. Jean-Max Gaudillière Ph.D. are members of the International Symposium for Psychotherapy of Schizophrenia and professors at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris where they have given a weekly seminar for nearly 30 years on Madness and the Social Link. They graduated in classics, and both hold Ph.D.s in Sociology. They worked until 1998 as psychoanalysts in public mental hospitals and outpatient consultations. They now continue in private practice. Together Françoise Davoine and Jean-Max Gaudillière have co-authored a book entitled History Beyond Trauma (The Other Press, 2004). Françoise Davoine has also written: La Folie Wittgenstein (EPEL, 1992); Mère Folle (Arcane, 1998), which has recently been turned into a film by Mieke Bal & Michelle Williams Gamaker; and Don Quichotte, pour combattre la mélancolie (Stock, 2008).
Sponsored by: the Psychoanalytic Studies Program, The Department of French and Italian, and the Department of Comparative Literature. Co-sponsored by: The Graduate Institute of the Liberal Arts.
Geshe Lobsang Tenzin Negi
Workshop: “Cognitive-based Compassion Training (CBCT): New frontiers in meditation research”
Followed by an open discussion moderated by Robert Paul
April 4 2011
In this talk, Dr. Negi will discuss developments in the field of meditation research, with attention to different styles of practice – Transcendental Meditation, mindfulness, and, more recently, compassion — that have been selected for scientific study. He will then discuss the key components of his Cognitive-Based Compassion program and the ways in which it builds upon and departs from popular mindfulness-based programs. Key findings from research on CBCT conducted here at Emory University will also be presented.
Dr. Geshe Lobsang Tenzin Negi, Ph.D., is the founder and director of Drepung Loseling Monastery, Inc., in Atlanta, GA, and a Senior Lecturer in Emory University’s Department of Religion. He also serves as Director of the Emory-Tibet Partnership, a multi-dimensional initiative founded in 1998 to bring together the foremost contributions of the Western scholastic tradition and the Tibetan Buddhist sciences of mind and healing. In that capacity, he serves as Co-Director of both the Emory-Tibet Science Initiative and the Emory Collaborative for Contemplative Studies. He is currently working with Emory scientists as co-principal investigator on a major clinical research project funded by the NIH that is studying the effects of compassion meditation on the experience of depression. In the summer of 2009 he inaugurated the Tibetan Mind/Body Sciences Summer Study Abroad Program with Emory biologist, Dr. Arri Eisen.
Lecture: "Sigmund Freud: A Philosophical Physician"
September 14 2011
What kind of thinker was Sigmund Freud? Was he a natural scientist, a neurologist, a psychiatrist, a psychotherapist, a latter-day faith healer, a confessor, a moralist, creative writer, a cultural theorist, a Jewish mystic, a religious thinker hiding behind the religion of reason -- or some sui generis mix of some or all of the above? In this talk it will be maintained that Freud was a “philosophical physician.” This is a term that is rich enough to encompass many of the countless facets of his work and personality.
And what kind of field is psychoanalysis? Today -- when the exhaustion of the linguistic turn and the simultaneous ascendance of neuroscience have caused psychoanalysis to once again reexamine its foundations – the exploration of this claim is of more than scholarly interest. Like all historical disciplines, psychoanalysis often moves forward by reappropriating its past. And the elucidation of Freud’s theoretical persona as a philosophical physician will cast considerable light on many of the foundational questions currently confronting the field.
Seminar: "On Narcissism: An Introduction"
September 14 2011
Making connections between a written work and the Zeitgeist is generally problematic and best ignored. With two of Freud’s most important books, however, the facts are so compelling that speculation is hard to resist. Although the production of The Interpretation of Dreams was completed by October of 1899, Freud had the publisher put the date “1900” on the frontis piece of his magnum opus. It seems clear that with this gesture, he was announcing that the nineteenth century’s march of reason was continuing into the new century. At the same time, it is also certain that with his discovery of the unconscious he was offering a whole new realm of nature, psychic reality, for the next century to conquer.
“On Narcissism: An Introduction,” on the other hand, was published in 1914, when the European bourgeoisie’s hopes for rationalism and progress were dashed on the battlefields of the First World War. Whatever else the paper represents, it also comprises the culmination of Freud’s eight-year attempt to defend his Enlightenment position against what as he saw as “the black slime” of Jung’s “occultism.”
“On Narcissism” is a protean paper in that it opens many of the subjects that will become the central motifs of Freud’s work after 1914. Not surprisingly, in a paper that was motivated by a concern for rationality, an extensive discussion of psychosis is found at its center. And “On Narcissism’s” discussion of omnipotence laid the foundations for Freud’s late great works in social and political theory. Finally, with its account of the interplay between ego-cathexis and object-cathexis, it provides the central theoretical figure of thought for the development of object relations theory and ego psychology.
Joel Whitebook holds a PhD in Philosophy and Clinical Psychology. He completed his psychoanalytic training at The New York Freudian Society in 1986, and currently maintains a private analytic practice in Manhattan. In addition to being a member of the faculty of Columbia University's Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research, Dr. Whitebook is also the Director of Columbia's Psychoanalytic Studies Program. During its second and third seasons, Dr. Whitebook was a member Slate.com’s weekly discussion group on the Sopranos. In 2009 he was awarded the JAPA Prize for his paper "Loewald, Psychoanalysis and 'The Project of Autonomy'," designating it the Journal’s best article of 2008. Dr. Whitebook is the author of Perversion and Utopia, an important text on Psychoanalysis and the Frankfurt School, and he is currently completing an Intellectual Biography of Sigmund Freud for Cambridge University Press.
Lunch and Lecture: Mark Stoholski
October 5 2011
The last works of the Hungarian psychoanalyst Sandor Ferenczi are defined by a theory of the formation of the psyche that is paradoxical: that the psyche comes to be only insofar as it is dissolved. Driven forcefully into existence through being traumatically affected, the Ferenczian subject comes to life through a work of a certain death that continually forces fragmentation. Rejecting the "constitutional" theories of pathogenesis in the contemporary works of Freud, Ferenczi arrives at a radical rethinking of affect that is foreign to notions of drives, emerging neither from the individual psyche nor belonging to it in any sense.
Mark Stoholski is a second year PhD student in the Department of Comparative Literature and the PSP. His current research, conducted in Atlanta and in Hungary, deals with the "Budapest School" of psychoanalysis and the theories of affect and transference developed by its representatives.
"Child Development: Rewriting the Transition from Semiotic to Symbolic with Boris Pasternak"
November 9 2011
From within the tradition of the richest narratology of childhood in Russia (Pushkin, Tolstoy, Bely), Boris Pasternak wrote of childhood as “something closed upon itself and independent, like a central nucleus of integration.” It is particularly illuminating to look at his work in the light of contemporary trends in psychoanalysis – particularly, strands of thought in Kristeva and Lacan. Like them, Pasternak realigns some of the concerns of modernism, but his emphasis is characteristically his own … and trailblazing.
Elena Glazov-Corrigan is an Associate Professor of Russian Literature at Emory University’s Department of Russian and East Asian Languages and Cultures. She is the author of Mandel'Shtam's Poetics: A Challenge to Postmodernism (University of Toronto Press); co-author with Kevin Corrigan of: Plato’s Dialectic at Play: Structure, And Myth in the Symposium (Pennsylvania State University Press) and Art after Philosophy: Pasternak's Early Prose (under review).
Co-sponsored by Emory University's Russian and East European Studies Program.
Lunch and Lecture: Kate Miner
"A Mother’s Touch: The Phantasy of Maternal Retaliation in two contesof Guy de Maupassant"
November 17 2011
This talk will discuss two of Maupassant’s contes fantastiques, “La main d’écorché” (1875) and “La Main” (1885), an in particular the way in which these two tales might be read through the object-relation theory of Melanie Klein and D.W. Winnicott. An exploration of the seemingly privileged role given to the hand—both in these contes and elsewhere Maupassant’s work—attempts to demonstrate that their presence is linked to what critic Antonia Fonyi, in her book Maupassant 1993, designates for Maupassant as the “fantasme fondateur”: entrapment and death at the hands of the mother.
Kate Miner is a 4th year Graduate Student in the Department of French and Italian. Her research centers on 19th century contes fantastiques, specifically the work of Guy de Maupassant and Prosper Mérimée. She is interested in representations of monstrosity and madness in 19th century literature, and the psychoanalytic writings of Melanie Klein and D. W. Winnicott.
Driving Miss Elsie: Dr. Williams and Extimite”
February 26 2010
"Who's Been Sleeping in Your Head? The Psychology of Sexual Fantasies"
March 23 2010
"Between Dramatic Dialogue and a Dream Voice: Life in the Wake of Diderot"
April 8 2010
Performance: "The Hysterical Alphabet"
October 7 2010
The Hysterical Alphabet is an interdisciplinary, multi-media performance by the artist collective Theater Oobleck based on the book written by Terri Kapsalis, illustrated by Gina Litherland, published by White Walls, and distributed by the University of Chicago Press. The work is based on research on the cultural history of hysteria, an under-recognized four thousand-year history that deeply inflects our contemporary ideas about gender and illness. Drawn from primary medical writings from ancient Egypt to the present, The Hysterical Alphabet is an abecedary offering a condensed history of hysteria with levity, playfulness, and critical insight.
This one-night only performance is sponsored by: the Hightower Fund, Visual Arts Department, the Institute of Liberal Arts (ILA), Emory College Center for Creativity & Arts, Theater Studies Department, Film Studies Department, Psychoanalytic Studies Program, Women's Studies Department, Music Department, and Visual Scholarship Initiative of Emory University.
Lunch and lecture: Amin Erfani
“Valère Novarina: Staging the Infant Tongue”
October 15 2010
The theater of Valère Novarina breaks every convention of drama: it rejects notions of plot, characters, stage constructions, while relying on interminable practices of syntactic disarticulation and lexical re-invention. It questions, inside the theater, the most basic elements of speech as a tool for communication. Since Artaud, Novarina has become in France and abroad the notorious figure of a “theatrical writing” that challenges, through the actor’s mouth, the boundaries of stage and representation from the dramatic, linguistic, and conceptual standpoints. In a recent publication, he situates the origin of this writing in a “scene” from his childhood: next to the piano, he listens to his mother sing a song in Hungarian (while she in fact did not understand that tongue), originally composed for her by her first lover, a Hungarian man, who was deported and died at Auschwitz. The writer recalls this experience as that of an “incomprehensible mother tongue,” which interferes with communicative language and forces his writing to become, not mimetic, but a performative enactment and a perpetual re-birth. My primary purpose is to revisit the notion of “scène” (stage/scene) in its “primitive” sense, as it suffers from polymorphous mutations and challenges the notion of re-presentation from both the analytical and theatrical standpoints.
Amin Erfani (French Department) currently writing his dissertation entitled “Breath and Whisper: the ‘Theatrical’ Writings of Beckett, Koltès, Novarina, and Derrida” in the Department of French and Italian. His research focuses on a particular genre of contemporary French theater, in dialogue with literary and psychoanalytic theories. He has produced publications, translations and contributed to theatrical productions of French playwrights such as Valère Novarina, Marie NDiaye, and Bernard-Marie Koltès.
“Psychoanalyzing the Psychohistorian: Erik Erikson and the Failures of Psychohistory”
October 15 2010
Howard Kushner is Nat C. Roberson Professor of Science and Society, Emory University.
"Winnicott with Lacan: Living Creatively in a Postmodern World”
Oct. 29 2010
What might it mean to live resourcefully in the contemporary cultural moment? Bringing Winnicott into conversation with Lacan, Ruti argues that, despite their obvious differences, both view excessive psychic integration as an impediment to what Winnicott calls creative living. Specifically, she proposes that Winnicott’s “False Self” is conceptually quite similar to what Lacan means by an ego-bound self that is unable to overcome its narcissistic fantasies of coherence and wholeness. While suggesting that for both Winnicott and Lacan creative living entails accepting existential insecurity, Ruti also highlights the limits of this perspective by acknowledging that there are instances where insecurity arises from oppressive sociocultural circumstances. Her aim is to demonstrate that existential instability and precariousness are the flipside of creativity without at the same time turning these concepts into a fetish for postmodern subjectivity.
Mari Ruti Ph.D, is Associate Professor of Critical Theory at the University of Toronto English Department, where she teaches psychoanalytic theory, continental philosophy, post structuralism, and gender and sexuality studies. She is the author of Reinventing the Soul: Posthumanist Theory and Psychic Life (Other Press, 2006); A World of Fragile Things: Psychoanalysis and the Art of Living (SUNY Press, 2009); and The Summons of Love (Columbia UP, forthcoming 2011). She has also written a mainstream book called The Case for Falling in Love (forthcoming from Sourcebooks in February 2011).
Vernon A. Rosario
"The Medical History and Challenges of Transgenderism"
November 9 2010
Psychoanalytic Studies Program Workshop
“Salvador Dalí’s Writings: The Art of Resistance”
November 13 2010
Salvador Dalí was no stranger to psychoanalysis. A reader of Freud and of Lacan (with whom he shared a common interest in paranoia), he promoted paranoia to the status of a creative “method,” practiced self-diagnosis throughout his autobiographical writings, and accepted all too willingly to be turned into a “case” by the various psychiatrists who stumbled upon his works. The challenge of this workshop will be to identify textual spots that resist analysis (including the kind of predictable psychoanalytic explanation that Dalí himself invited), and to show how these resisting spots call for a more creative engagement between art and psychoanalysis, an engagement in which both fields may find themselves “shaken” by the questions coming from the other. Participants will focus on specific passages of Dalí’s writings, and will link these textual passages to some of the works exposed in the exhibition currently held at the High Museum: “Salvador Dalí: The Late Work.”
Co-sponsored by the Department of Spanish and Portuguese.
1:00-2:00pm: Dalia Judovitz: "Simulations in Dalí's Late Works"
2:00-3:00pm: Frédérique Joseph-Lowery: "Dalí’s Hymen"
3:30-4:30pm: John Johnston:"Delirious Science: Dalí and René Thom"
4:30-5:30pm: Claire Nouvet: "Dalí’s Aftertaste"
John Johnston, Ph.D, Professor, English and Comparative Literature. Author of: The Allure of Machinic Life (2008), Information Multiplicity: American Fiction in the Age of Media Saturation (1998), Carnival of Repetition: William Gaddis’ The Recognitions and Postmodern Theory (1990), Editor and Translator, Literature, Media, Information System: Essays by Friedrich A. Kittler,Critical Voices in Theory and Culture Series (1997).
Frédérique Joseph-Lowery, Ph.D, art critic (Artpress, Artnet), independent scholar, and curator, has published the critical edition of Dalí’s French original manuscripts La Vie secrète de Salvador Dalí. Suis-je un génie? (2006). Co-author of: Dalí et Béjart: Danser “Gala”, L’art bouffe de Salvador Dalí (2007). Editor of: Lire Dalí (2001), and Salvador Dalí: sur les traces d’éros (2010). Curator of: Dalí. La pratique du recyclage (Scriptorial of Avranches, 2007), Dalí/Béjart: Danser “Gala” (Maison Bergevin, 2007), Ray Johnson Dalí/Warhol and others, “Main Ray, Duchamp, Openheim and Pikabia” (Feigen Gallery, New York, 2009); Dalí Dance and beyond (Godwin–Ternbach Museum, Queens College CUNY, April – June 2010; Salvador Dalí Museum, St Petersburg, Florida, July - December 2010).
Dalia Judovitz, Ph. D., National Endowment for the Humanities Professor of French and Italian. Author of Subjectivity and Representation in Descartes: The Origins of Modernity (1988); Unpacking Duchamp: Art in Transit (1995); The Culture of the Body: Genealogies of Modernity (2001); Drawing on Art: Duchamp, Dada, & Company. (2010). Co-editor of: Dialectics and Narrative (1993).
Claire Nouvet, Ph. D., Associate Professor, French. Author of Abélard et Héloïse: la passion de la maîtrise (2009); Enfances Narcisse (2009). Editor of Literature and the Ethical Question (1991); co-editor of Minima Memoria: In the Wake of Jean-François Lyotard (2007)
M. Gerard Fromm
Lecture: “Murmuring Blood: The Transmission of Trauma Across Generations”
November 29 2010
This lecture focuses on the transmission of trauma from one generation to the next. The seminal paper on this subject, “Ghosts in the Nursery” by Selma Fraiberg and her colleagues (1975), vividly and painfully describes a mother unable to hear her baby’s cries because, it turned out, she could not hear her own cries within her original family just as her parents’ could not hear her as a child either. Since September 11, 2001, a number of clinician-researchers have taken up similar studies of the traumatic consequences of the attacks on the World Trade Center. Susan Coates and her colleagues (2003) argue persuasively that trauma and human bonds are inversely related, i.e., trauma is often a phenomenon of aloneness and, on the other hand, going through a terrible situation with other people sometimes mitigates its traumatic effects. In this presentation, clinical vignettes as well as other biographical data will be used to elaborate this them
Seminar: “Psychoanalysis and the Upside Down World”
November 30 2010
“In my dream, there was a hospital that looked like a lighthouse. Ariel Sharon was being wheeled in on a stretcher. He was very ill. But the treatment in this hospital was bizarre: the patients were hung upside down, and that helped them get better.” War turns the world upside down. Driven by the massive number of psychological casualties in World War II—including combatants, the bereaved and the displaced of all ages—mental health professionals in England developed a rich theoretical foundation for group psychotherapy. The emerging field of social psychology, itself motivated by the need to understand the madness of group behavior related to the war, also made major contributions to evolving group dynamic theory. In 1961, the English psychoanalyst, Wilfred Bion, whose position as a tank commander had exposed him to extreme group behavior first-hand, published Experiences in Groups, which articulated the seminal framework for what came to be known as the group-as-a-whole approach. Soon after Bion’s groundbreaking text, what came to be called the ‘Group Relations Conferences’ began in England and the U.S., as way to provide individuals with opportunities to learn experientially about themselves in a group context. With their focus on the here-and-now operation of the unconscious among people engaged in collective work, these conferences represent a powerful form of applied psychoanalysis, which both deepens and turns upside-down its members’ understanding of everyday, pseudo-rational group behavior. Indeed, the above dream, reported by a conference member in a closing plenary, represented the total shift in perspective people had come to in their conference learning—their understanding of organizations had been profoundly turned upside-down—and the challenge of re-entering the non-psychoanalytic world. Dr. Fromm’s seminar will review briefly the history, concepts and practices following upon Bion’s discoveries. It will then use vignettes from Group Relations conferences and other kinds of conferences to illustrate the dynamics of inter-group processes, even at the international level.
M. Gerard Fromm, Ph.D., is the Evelyn Stefansson Nef Director of the Erikson Institute for Education and Research at the Austen Riggs Center (Stockbridge, MA) where he directed the Therapeutic Community Program for many years, and where he is also a senior psychotherapist and supervisor. A board certified psychoanalyst, he is on the faculties of the Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis and the Berkshire Psychoanalytic Institute. He is also Clinical Instructor in Psychology (Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School), and Assistant Clinical Professor (Yale Child Study Center). He is a member of the International Society for the Psychoanalytic Study of Organizations, the Academy for Critical Incident Analysis, the International Dialogue Initiative, and is currently the director of the 2010-2012 group relations conferences for the Center for the Study of Groups and Social Systems in Boston. Dr. Fromm has presented and published widely, including the edited volume, with Bruce L. Smith, Ph.D., The Facilitating Environment: Clinical Applications of Winnicott’s Theory. Co-sponsored by the Hightower Fund, the Emory University Psychoanalytic Institute, and the Department of Comparative Literature.
Co-sponsored by the Hightower Fund, the Emory University Psychoanalytic Institute, and the Department of Comparative Literature.
Lunch and Lecture: Anthony Cooke
"Black Community, Media, and Intellectual Paranoia-as-Politics"
December 7 2010
The Apollo 11 moon landing not only produced the “One small step for man…” catchphrase, but also transformed the discourses of marginalized groups whose interests remained outside the notion of the “human family”—most notably the African-American community. Left behind literally as well as socio-economically, the black community faced a psychically damaging epiphany: realization that one's "humanity" is not—indeed, has never been—a category or state of being achievable via political (Civil Rights) or humanistic (literary) engagement with white America. Rather, the rite of passage into "the Human" revealed itself as an irredeemably elusive grail accessible only through submission and complicity, as well as exclusively—a birthright of white privilege. A by-product of this trauma was an extreme hermeneutics of suspicion—“blackstream knowledge,” or “black paranoia”—as a mode of political activism, cultural production, and psychological survival within black America. Black paranoia functions as a group dynamic—a cognitive system shared, made use of, and contributed to by members of the black community in wake of the American government’s choosing to fund NASA over Civil Rights concerns. Black paranoia affected African-American reactions to the post-Golden Age science-fiction technologies of rocketry and appeared in traditional media technologies such as the press. Yet reactions were far from monolithic. While black newspapers produced competing discourses of radical resistance or compulsory celebration regarding Apollo 11, intellectuals such as author John A. Williams produced pro-conspiracy theory novels (The Man Who Cried I Am) and psychiatrists William H. Grier and Price M. Cobbs published case studies (Black Rage) embracing paranoia as a new way for blacks’ continued survival in what was rapidly being conceived of at the time as an “antiblack revival.”
Anthony Cook (English Department) His research focuses on African-American literature and culture, Speculative Literature, media culture, systems theory, and existential psychoanalysis, He has published and presented at conferences on these topics.