"Hello Fellow DSPP Members,
It is my pleasure and honor to welcome you to the DSPP 2019-2020 Program Year. We have an exciting group of local and national speakers who welcome the opportunity to inform and inspire us. This year's theme, "Relational Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy", places us at the cutting edge of American Psychoanalysis. Many of us are interested in relational psychoanalysis and believe relational approaches offer the best opportunity to continue a dialogue with others at the boundaries of our discipline.
Relational psychoanalysis has emerged as a critique and alternative to the more traditional movements in psychoanalysis. Adrienne Harris comments, "The question of influence and multiple perspectives is particularly critical in thinking about the relational tradition. Those of us who might be termed the first generation at Psychoanalytic Dialogues (Aron, Altman, Bass, Benjamin, Bromberg, Davies, Dimen, Ghent, and Harris) were all, inevitably, some kind of immigrant, arriving at a relational address from a wide variety of analytic cultures. There is an interesting distinction between "small r" and "capital R" relational perspectives, relationalists who like hybridity (mixed models), and ones who want to deepen and particularize a Relational tradition". Regardless of your interest, this years' programs provide an opportunity for dialogue within our psychoanalytic communities.
In conclusion I again quote Adrienne Harris, "Relational psychoanalysis entails an understanding, sometimes reluctant, sometimes jubilant and confident, that analytic work proceeds with an irreducible degree of uncertainty. We don't work knowing nothing, but our awareness, our clarity of purpose, our intentions, and out decisions, spontaneous or crafted, all have aspects of unconscious forces that renders us incomplete masters in our own house. This is our challenge and our burden". It is my hope that this years' programs will continue to introduce us to different perspectives of local and national clinicians and scholars who think of themselves as relationalists of one kind or another.
You can find your own way of working within the tension among different psychoanalytic approaches. This is a time for enthusiasm as we can now feel free to work in both the internal world and external reality.
Our fall workshop, "The Dialogue of the Unconscious, the Mutuality of Analytic Relations and the Uses of Self" presented by Anthony Bass offers us the opportunity to better understand the role of imagination in psychoanalytic therapy as well as the therapist's uses of subjective experience and countertransference in relationally informed psychotherapies. Dr. Bass was formerly the chairperson of the Relational Track of the New York University Postdoctoral Program for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy. He currently serves as President of the Stephen Mitchell Center for Relational Studies and is founding and current board director of the International Association for Relational Psychoanalysis and psychotherapy and is Joint Editor in Chief of Psychoanalytic Dialogues.
Our winter workshop introduces us to contemporary field theory in psychoanalysis. The presenter, Montana Katz, is a founding Co-Director of the International Field Theory Association and Editor of the Routledge Psychoanalytic Field Theory Book Series and has published about psychoanalysis, gender, and urban life for women.
"Psychoanalytic theory has been criticized for neglecting issues of social context and identity and privileging internal life over external realities (Tummala-Narra, 2018). Adding culture as a core aspect of one's identity formation can facilitate the integration can facilitate the integration of individual and cultural understanding in education. The final presentation by Gurmeet Kanwal in the spring, 2020, Culture, Attachment, and Integrative Individuation: An alternative to the Separation-Individuation Model, will provide us with an introduction to the role of interaction and interdependence in the understanding and treatment of non-western persons who do not experience themselves as independent 'individuals'.
I want to thank our immediate past President, Stephanie Swales, for setting a new standard for leadership; Alicia Coleman, without whom we might not survive; Berit Johnson who manages our continuing education speakers, and the DSPP Executive Committee whose long term leadership sustains our future. Finally, I want to thank Ken Trevino who has encouraged and inspired me to accept this role.
Thank you for your continued support and for joining us this coming year.
Monty Evans-DSPP President"