Psychoanalysis: Arthur Blank, Jr., MD, Chair
Question/Topic: Fundamentals of Psychoanalytic Understanding of Extreme Trauma
Participants: Nanette Auerhahn, PhD; Doris Brothers, PhD; Harold Kudler, MD; Jacob Lindy, MD.
Nanette Auerhahn, PhD, psychologist in private practice in Beachwood, Ohio, is a trauma scholar who has published numerous psychoanalytic articles and book chapters, taught courses on trauma at Yale and Stanford Universities, and was one of the original researchers at the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies at Yale University. She has served on the faculties of Stanford, the Wright Institute, the California School of Professional Psychology in Berkeley, and Case Western Reserve University, and has been a fellow at the Stanford Humanities Center, the Stanford Psychology Department, and the Center for Research on Women and Gender. Dr. Auerhahn has had extensive clinical experience with an array of survivors including combat veterans, Holocaust survivors, accident victims, survivors of assault and torture, physically and sexually abused children, and adolescent victimizers. Consultancies have included Amnesty International, Laurelwood Hospital, the CWRU Counseling Department, Bellefaire Jewish Children's Bureau, the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center, and Menorah Park Center for Aging in Beachwood. She is certified by the National Institute of Trauma and Loss in Children and has received specialized training in family therapy, eye movement desensitization reprocessing, and psychological assessment.
Doris Brothers, PhD, is a psychologist/psychoanalyst whose work is informed by self psychology and intersubjectivity theory. She is cofounder and faculty member of the Training and Research Institute for Self Psychology (TRISP) in New York. She has authored and co-authored several books, the most recent of which is Toward a Psychology of Uncertainty: Trauma-Centered Psychoanalysis. Her recent writing focuses on what she calls “traumatic attachments” and their role in the intergenerational transmission of trauma as well as the problem of evil and “the unforgiveable” in clinical practice. She has a private practice in New York City.
Harold Kudler, MD, trained in psychiatry at Yale University and is Associate Clinical Professor at Duke University School of Medicine and an advanced candidate in Adult and Child Psychoanalysis at the Psychoanalytic Education Center of the Carolinas. He coordinates mental health services for a three-state region of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and is Associate Director of its Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center (MIRECC) for Deployment Mental Health. He has received teaching awards from Duke University, the American Psychiatric Association, and the American Psychoanalytic Association. Dr. Kudler's expertise in post-traumatic stress disorder stems from clinical and research work with combat veterans, ex-prisoners of war, survivors of other traumatic events and their families. His PTSD publications and presentations include diagnosis, biological and psychological characteristics, and treatment. He was the founding Chairperson of the PTSD Practice Guidelines Task Force of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies (ISTSS), first author of its Guideline for the Psychodynamic Treatment of PTSD, and recently was the senior author of the second edition of the Guideline. From 2000 to 2005, Dr. Kudler co-chaired the Under Secretary for Veterans Affairs’ Special Committee on PTSD, which reports directly to Congress and is the national monitor of the VA’s continuum of PTSD care, education, research, and benefits. In 2002, Dr. Kudler co-led the development of joint VA/Department of Defense clinical practice guidelines for the management of traumatic stress. He is on the Board of Directors of ISTSS and, in 2005, co-chaired the first Joint DoD/VA Conference on Post-Deployment Mental Health and became a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. Dr. Kudler has served as Chair of the North Carolina Psychoanalytic Foundation and is an advisor to Sesame Workshop’s Talk, Listen, Connect series for military children and their families.
Jacob Lindy, MD, is Past Director and a Supervising and Training Analyst at the Cincinnati Psychoanalytic Institute, as well as Director of the University of Cincinnati Traumatic Stress Study Center. For over thirty years, he has adapted psychoanalytic clinical theory to the special circumstances of the trauma survivor. As a trauma clinician and researcher, he has studied and treated survivors of natural and man-made disasters (Buffalo Creek, Beverly Hills Fire), war (Vietnam), and political repression (Eastern Europe). With Robert Jay Lifton, Dr. Lindy edited Beyond Invisible Walls: The Psychological Legacy of Soviet Trauma (2001). With John Wilson, he published Countertransference in the Treatment of PTSD, and Treating Psychological Trauma and PTSD (with Matthew J. Friedman, (2001), and his soon-to-be-released Trauma and Culture (2010).
Reflective Functioning: Christine Erskine, MSW, Chair
Question/Topic: What role does Reflective Functioning play in literature and criticism?
Participants: Howard Steele, PhD; Esther Rashkin, PhD; Billie Pivnick, PhD.
Billie Pivnick, PhD, is a Clinical Psychologist in private practice in Greenwich Village, specializing in the treatment of trauma-related psychopathology in adults, adolescents, and families with young children. She is an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program at Teachers College, Columbia University and on the faculties of the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy and the Washington Square Institute Family Forensic Psychology Training Program. As Consulting Psychologist to Thinc Design (partnered with the National September 11 Memorial and Museum) she is a co-designer of the exhibits for the museum being built at Ground Zero. Her 1990 study, Symbolization and its Discontents: The Impact of Threatened Object Loss on the Discourse and Symptomatology of Hospitalized Psychotic Patients, won IPTAR’s Stanley Berger Award for its contribution to the field of psychoanalysis. This study investigated changes in symbolization in a population of multiply-traumatized patients and discussed the findings from the perspective of both attachment theory and psychoanalysis. She is presently updating it to include a neuroscientific perspective.
Esther Rashkin, PhD, is Professor of Languages and Literature at the University of Utah, and a Clinical Social Worker in private practice in Salt Lake City. Her research has been in the areas of 19th, 20th, and 21st century French & Comparative literature, cultural studies, European, African, North and South American, and Asian film, contemporary critical theory, psychoanalytic theory, and visual and media studies. Her recent book — Unspeakable Secrets and the Psychoanalysis of Culture — reflects her interest in the ways literature and film can conceal political ideologies, and how personal, social, and historical trauma can be transmitted transgenerationally. Dr. Rashkin is also working on the interdisciplinary connections between mind and brain and, with a team of scientists, is investigating how recent innovations in neuroimaging technology can be used to improve the psychodynamic treatment of those suffering from anxiety, as well as how we can better understand the links between neurobiology and the creative processes.
Howard Steele, PhD, is Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in Psychology, at the New School for Social Research in New York City. He is senior and founding editor of the international quarterly journal, Attachment and Human Development. His published work includes the 2008 book, Clinical Applications of the Adult Attachment Interview, and more than 60 journal articles and book chapters. Central themes informing Dr. Steele’s published work are the impact of attachment, loss, trauma, and emotion understanding across the lifespan and across generations.
Fiction Writing: Marilyn Charles, PhD, Chair
Topic: Trauma Writing or Writing Trauma
Participants: Alan Cheuse; Howard Norman; Jane Shore.
Marilyn Charles, PhD, is a psychologist and psychoanalyst, currently on staff at the Austen Riggs Center and in private practice in Stockbridge and Richmond, MA. She maintains affiliations with the Michigan Psychoanalytic Council, Michigan State University, and the National Training Program, and has been active in advocating for psychoanalytic training, practice, and applications. Interests include trauma, creativity, and nonverbal communications. She has presented and published extensively, and is the author of Patterns: Essential Building Blocks of Experience (2002), Learning from Experience: A Clinician’s Guide (2004), and Constructing Realities: Transformations Through Myth and Metaphor (2004).
Alan Cheuse is a University Professor at George Mason University. He is a novelist and has been the book critic on NPR for the last 25 years. He is the author of the novels The Bohemians, The Grandmothers' Club, The Light Possessed, and To Catch the Lightning, plus several collections of short fiction and a pair of novellas published as The Fires, as well as the nonfiction work Fall Out of Heaven: An Autobiographical Journey. As a book commentator, Cheuse is a regular contributor to National Public Radio's "All Things Considered." He has edited with Caroline Marshall a volume of short stories, Listening to Ourselves, and with Nicholas Delbanco Talking Horse: Bernard Malamud on Life and Work, and with Lisa Alvarez Writers Workshop in a Book: The Squaw Valley Community of Writers on the Art of Fiction. His short fiction has appeared in publications such as The New Yorker, Black Warrior Review, Boston Globe Sunday Magazine, Another Chicago Magazine, and elsewhere. His collection of travel writing – A Trance After Breakfast – appeared last summer.
Howard Norman is a Professor of Writing at the University of Maryland. He has published Devotion (Houghton Mifflin, 2007), The Haunting of L. (Farrar, Strauss, Giroux, 2007), In Fond Remembrance of Me (Picador, 2006), The Chauffeur (Picador, 2002), The Northern Lights (Picador, 2001), The Museum Guard (Farrar, Strauss, Giroux, 1997), The Bird Artist (Farrar, Strauss, Giroux, 1994), Kiss In The Hotel Joseph Conrad (Summit/Simon and Shuster, 1989), The Northern Lights (Summit/Simon and Shuster, 1987). A new novel, What Is Left The Daughter, is forthcoming July 2010. He is currently working on a memoir, I Hate to Leave This Beautiful Place. His work has earned him: Time Magazine's "Best Five Books of the Year," 1996; New England Booksellers Association Fiction Award, 1995; National Book Award Finalist, 1994; NEA Grant (fiction), 1991; NEA Fellowships, 1985, 1981; Giles Whiting Writing Fellowship, 1985; NEH Fellowship, 1981; John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, 1981.
Jane Shore is Professor of English and Creative Writing at the George Washington University. She teaches Modern and Contemporary Poetry (with an interest in Elizabeth Bishop) and related subjects. She has received fellowships from The John Simon Guggenheim Foundation; The Radcliffe Institute; she was an Alfred Hodder Fellow at Princeton; a Goodyear Fellow at The Foxcroft School; and she twice received grants from The National Endowment for the Arts. In 1989, she was a Jenny McKeen Moore Writer at The George Washington University, where she has taught ever since. Shore’s first book of poems, Eye Level, won the 1977 Juniper Prize (U Mass. Press); her second book, The Minute Hand, won the 1986 Lamont Poetry Prize, awarded by The Academy of American Poets (U Mass. Press); Music Minus One was a 1996 National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist in Poetry (Picador USA.) Happy Family was published by Picador USA in 1999. Her most recent book, A Yes-or-No Answer, was published by Houghton- Mifflin-Harcourt in 2008.
Neuroscience: Anton Trinidad, MD, Chair
Question/topic: Making Sense of Neuroscience, Psychiatry and Clinical Practice in Trauma Evaluation and Management
Participants: Julia Frank, MD; James Griffith, MD; Anton Trinidad, MD.
Anton Trinidad, MD, is full time faculty in The George Washington University Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and Medical Director for its medical-psychiatry unit. In psychiatry, he has an interest in cognitive and brief psychotherapies, neuropsychiatry, and the interface between medicine and psychiatry. In addition, he has an interest in medical humanities and teaches in the medical school's Medical Humanities Program, primarily in its "Film and Medicine" program. He has a Master of Arts in Literature and is presently doing graduate work at GWU in English and American Language and Literature. He is one of the Conference Organizers. His paper for this panel is entitled, Trauma Practice in the Trenches: Is Neuroscience Helpful (Yet)?
Julia Frank, MD, Faculty Member of the GWU Medical Center, is a graduate of the Yale University School of Medicine. She completed a year of internal medicine residency before finishing a psychiatry residency and fellowship in the Department of Psychiatry at Yale. She is a member of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, the Association of Women Psychiatrists, and the Society for Women's Health Research. She is also a fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. She practices as a member of the Medical Faculty Associates at GWU. Dr. Frank’s paper for this panel is entitled, Adding Verisimilitude: The Role of Mental Health Professionals in Shaping the Trauma Narratives of Refugees Seeking Asylum.
James Griffith, MD, is Professor of Psychiatry and Director of Residency Training and the Psychiatric Consultation Service at the George Washington University Medical Center.
Trauma, Narrative, and the Humanities: Marshall Alcorn, PhD, Chair
Question/topic: How do the humanities use Trauma Theory to understand literature, history, and narrative claims?
Participants: Greg Forter, PhD; Esther Rashkin, PhD, LCSW; Evelyn Schreiber, PhD; Jean Wyatt, PhD.
Greg Forter, PhD, is Associate Professor of English at the University of South Carolina. Professor Forter fuses a psychoanalytic approach to individual expression with a historical attentiveness to the social forces that shape such expression from "outside." Reading literary texts is always about negotiating these two imperatives; to illuminate the psychic, social, and political formations to which individual authors respond, and to trace how the idiosyncracies of each response give rise to the complexities and contradictions of literary works. He has published extensively on trauma, gender, and melancholia. Recent publications include: “Freud, Faulkner, Caruth: Trauma and the Politics of Literary Form,” Narrative 15.3 (2007), 259-85, which was winner of Narrative's Annual Best Essay Prize for 2007. His most recent book is Murdering Masculinities: Fantasies of Gender and Violence in the American Crime Novel (New York: New York UP, 2000).
Esther Rashkin, PhD, LCSW, is Professor of French & Comparative Literary and Cultural Studies, and Adjunct Professor of Modern Dance at the University of Utah. She also maintains a private clinical practice in Salt Lake City. She has published articles on psychoanalytic theory and practice and on the intersections between psychoanalysis and literature, film, dance, and popular culture. In her books, Family Secrets and the Psychoanalysis of Narrative (1992) and especially in Unspeakable Secrets and the Psychoanalysis of Culture (2008) – which won the Gradiva award for best theoretical work on psychoanalysis for 2009 from the National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis – she argues for the importance of psychoanalytically informed close reading for the study of culture and the exposure of ideology. She is a former Fellow of the American Psychoanalytic Association, and is currently Academic Liaison and a member of its Fellowship Committee.
Jean Wyatt, PhD, is Professor of English and Comparative Literary Studies at Occidental College. Her most recent book is Risking Difference: Identification, Race and Community in Contemporary Fiction and Feminism (SUNY Press, 2004). Among her recent articles are: "Love's Time and the Reader: Ethical Effects of Nachtraeglichkeit in Toni Morrison's Love" (Narrative 16.2, May 2008; "Patricia Hill Collins's Black Sexual Politics and the Genealogy of the Strong Black Woman" (Studies in Gender and Sexuality 9.1, Winter 2008, and "Thinking the Other-Centered Self with Jean Laplanche: The Enigmatic Signifier and its Political Uses" (Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society 11.2, August 2006). Professor Wyatt was the recipient of the annual Sterling Award for scholarship and teaching at Occidental College in 2003.
Evelyn Schreiber, PhD, is Associate Professor of English at George Washington University and Director of the University Writing Center. Her scholarship includes articles on writing centers/programs, business communications, literature, collaborative writing, multicultural issues, Faulkner, Morrison, Pinter, stream-of-consciousness, psychoanalytic theory, and cultural studies. Her research applies Lacanian principles of identity/subjectivity/agency and cultural studies to literary texts and composition studies. Her book, Subversive Voices: Eroticizing the Other in William Faulkner and Toni Morrison, examines identity and race via the theory of Jacques Lacan and cultural studies. It was awarded the Toni Morrison Society book prize for work on Morrison. Her second book, Bodies of Trauma: Race, Home, and Healing in Toni Morrison's Novels, is currently in publication with LSU Press and examines trauma in Toni Morrison's work.