November 3, 2011
Introduction for New Students
Newstudents are invited to attend the program orientation at 7:00PM on Thursdayevening led by the New Directions Co-chairs.
November 4-6, 2011
The Bereft Therapist, The Grieving Writer
Writers and analysts share in common the task of interpreting and mediating experience through
language. The work of psychotherapy is to understand, contain and help patients, often as they are going through difficult experiences of pain and loss. This is mirrored in the writers work as well, where the
writing serves to deepen the reader's appreciation of complex aspects of human experience. This
weekend will examine the impact on the analyst and the writer of personal, unexpected loss - whether
within or outside of the consulting room. We will explore how therapists and writers process and work
through the impact of unanticipated loss, with consideration of how it affects the work we do and,
conversely, how our work may help us navigate through these experiences.
Coordinators: Anne Adelman, Ph.D. and Kerry Malawista, Ph.D.
February 3-5, 2012
On Writers Block
What is one to do on a day when thoughts cease to flow and proper words wont come?One cannot help trembling at this possibility.- S. Freud
My mind beats on, my mind beats on, and no words come.Thomas Mann
At times, all writers suffer from the inability to write.Some writers have endured mythic bouts of non-writing: sixty years for Henry Roth, four decades for J.D. Salinger, the rest of her life following the publication of To Kill a Mockingbird for Harper Lee.During such periods, some find it impossible to write at all, while others suffer because they cannot write what they want to write as well as they wish to write it.In this state of mindwhen "thoughts cease to flow and proper words won't come"something feels "off," as if a vehicle has ground to a halt, or a machine has broken down.The fluidity of the mind in harmony with itself has disappeared.In its place, something static, congealed, and stubbornly resistant to the will of the writer seems to have taken up residence.The writer's mind feels fatally obstructed.
In 1949, a Viennese migr psychoanalyst living in the U.S., Edmund Bergler (1899-1962), created the metaphor-laden term, Writers Block, to describe the condition.In his 1949 book, "The Writer and Psychoanalysis," Dr. Bergler proposed that writers block was a form of self-sabotage, or "psychic masochism," that originated in early life experiences during the oral phase of development.Today, Writers Block tends to be viewed in a more pragmatic context, and is often treated with anti-depressant and anti-anxiety medication.
In this conference, we will examine the analytic underpinnings of the metaphor, itself, alongside the set of characteristics known as Writers Block.To that end, we will hear from creative writers, writing teachers, and psychoanalysts who work with writers and study experiences of creative blockage.We will have some fun with this most dreaded state of affairs for any writer, and also share practical tips to help get the pen moving across the paper, or the flingers flying on the keyboard again.
Coordinator: Kate Daniels, M.F.A., M.A.
Inspiration in our Writing: Who Are Our Heroes?
This conference will examine the personal heroes that provide inspiration for our writing. Analysts and writers will tell their own personal stories of the people who influenced their work. They will describe in detail the ideas of their valued thinkers, writers and teachers, and reflect on what it was about their own dispositions that drew them to these men and women. They will then reflect on how their own work has changed in response to these influences. The goal of the conference is to explore the role of identification, idealization, conflict and defense in our professional development as writers and analysts.Coordinator: Deirdre Callanan, Ph.D.
Don Chiappinelli, LCSW, is a psychotherapist in private practice in Fredericksburg, VA. He is a graduate of the Washington School of Psychiatry's Advanced Psychotherapy Training Program, as well as New Directions, of which he is now a Co-chair.Along with Gail Boldt and Oren Gozlan he will be coordinating the Fall 2012 New Directions weekend, Queering the Couch.Don is a mid-life career changer, having been a professional and fine-art photographer in NYC for more than 15 years before becoming a psychotherapist.His writing is mostly memoir and fiction, some of which has been published in the New Directions Journal.Writing heroes include Nancy Drew, Virginia Woolf, Doris Lessing, Christopher Isherwood, Joan Didion, and Tom Lamb. Photographer heroes include Edward Weston, Irving Penn, Diane Arbus, Jan Groover, and Cindy Sherman.
Richard M. Waugaman, M.D., is Training & Supervising Analyst Emeritus, Washington Psychoanalytic Institute, and Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Georgetown University. Forty of his more than 100 publications are on Shakespeare and on the psychology of pseudonymity; most of these can be found on his website, www.oxfreudian.com.
Bonita Holland Winer writes, “To become a writer I was raised in a family of farmers, engineers and schoolteachers. I dreamed of becoming a rancher in West Texas but read books about sailing ships, oceans, and Napoleonic Era ports of harbor.I studied all the wrong subjects (accounting, logic, architecture) at all the wrong schools.My first book, Faces, was written on folded construction paper discarded by my second grade teacher and contained a list of my guesses about what people were thinking based upon the looks on their faces. Grammatical ESP. My only audience was my imaginary but very long-lived Uncle Oscar who permanently instilled in me the knowledge that everything important has to be kept secret or someone would ruin it for you.Naturally I failed miserably at any writing class where ‘writing what you know’ meant describing the things of the external world which were the very things that I was the least sure of.So attempting to describe myself and my credentials is a fool’s errand which probably, in itself, describes me best.”
Lauren Wolk graduated from Brown University in 1981 with a degree in English and American Literature and a concentration in Creative Writing. Since then she has worked as, among other things, a writer with the Battered Women’s Project of the St. Paul American Indian Center, a senior editor with Nelson Publishing in Toronto, a freelance editor and writer, a magazine feature writer, a high school English and Creative Writing teacher at Sturgis Charter School, Assistant Director of the Cape Cod Writers’ Center, and now Associate Director at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod where her work involves programming, development, education, and public relations.Lauren is also a poet whose work has appeared in roger, Nimrod, PrimeTime, Cape Women, A Place of Her Own, and elsewhere. Her first novel, Those Who Favor Fire, was published by Random House in 1999. Her second, Forgiving Billy, won the Hackney Award and was twice nominated for the Pushcart Editor's Book Award. It awaits publication. She is currently at work on her third novel, a collection of poems, and the assemblage art she has exhibited at galleries on Cape Cod.
Queering the Couch
Psychoanalysis' history of pathologizing non-normative expressions and experiences of gender, sexuality, and sexual orientation is well known.However, in its current view, psychoanalytic theorists and clinicians have been shoring up the gap between psychoanalysis and the critical insights about gender and sexual diversity that are coming from philosophy and gender studies.Often labeled queer theory, the writings of Ken Corbett, Eve Sedgwick, and Judith Butler, among many others, are indicative of this paradigm shift, which is changing the psychoanalytic landscape.In our view, the very essence of psychoanalytic thinking - its cherishing the diversity of lives and desires, as opposed, for example, to DSM-IV classifications - makes for a strong fit between queer theory and contemporary psychoanalytic practice.
This weekend, we will consider gender and sexual diversity from a queer perspective.We will explore the ways that queer theory offers two useful streams of thought for our lives as analysts/therapists and as writers.Queer theory offers new and important ways of thinking about gender and sexuality for each of us, regardless of orientations or object choices.And it offers new ways of thinking about these issues for those who are relegated to positions of non-normative gender or sexuality.Join us as we explore the fundamental queerness of the analytic couch.
Coordinators:Gail Boldt, Ph.D.; Don Chiappinelli, MSW; Oren Gozlan, Psy.D.
February 8-10, 2013
The Mind of the Child in the Adult
Freud first made the case for elements of the mind of a child influencing the life of an adult with publication of the case of the Wolfman where an infantile neurosis held partial sway over the adult who never really outgrew it. These days we all accept the influence of infancy and childhood on the formation of the adult mind, but is an "influence on formation" all that's left over from those early years? What about the persistence of psychic equivalence and pretend modes of thinking highlighted by the work of Fonagy, Target, and colleagues in their work with borderline personality disorder? What about the patterns of attachment established between 12-18 months of life that are still visible in adulthood in several longitudinal studies? What about the old concept of regression in the service of the ego? What is regression, really, in a person who is not psychotic? What is a "child personality" in an adult with dissociative identity disorder?
Coordinator: Richard Chefetz, M.D.
Additional guest faculty will be announced at a later date.
DR. TARGET WILL ALSO CONDUCT AN OPTIONAL FULL DAY WORKSHOP ON THE THURSDAY BEFORE THE WEEKEND.
Donald Winnicott reminds us that home is Where We Start From and Thomas Wolfe warns us that We Can't Go Home Again.Home - whether a physical reality set in place and time, or an image experienced in our internal world - is populated by persons, experiences and memories, real and imagined, that may lead us towards transformation - or not.In this weekend, we will use the widest and most personal definitions for HOME to explore from within, from without, and from in-between.According to Jacques Lacan, we are touched and spoken about long before we are fed by our mothers and others, and, as we know, the world - the HOME - we come into is beyond our making.We may enter a world at war or at peace and into a particular place, caste, or class that informs what we do and say and think as well as what we pass along to our children.
This weekend will explore the multifold meanings of home for both the analytic session and the writer's space and this weekend's discussions will explore interpretations and variations on this theme.
Coordinators:Sharon Alperovitz, M.S.W. and Evelyn Schreiber, Ph.D.