In late April, clinical professor and director of the Psychological Services Institute Amelio D’Onofrio, Ph.D., hosted colleagues from across the country for the Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Trauma conference. Bringing together graduate students and professionals from a range of roles within the field of psychology and mental health, the conference focused on treating trauma from a variety of theoretical perspectives.
Dr. Betsy Hall’s talk, Psychotherapy’s Epic Journey: Descent, Dis-memberment, and Re-membrance, built parallels between the heroes’ journeys in epic literature and psychotherapy with the hero as the patient and the therapist as the guide using The Epic of Gilgamesh, The Odyssey, Moby Dick, and Beloved as examples. The talk built on her recent book Psychotherapy’s Pilgrim Poet: The Story Within.
Following Dr. Hall was Dr. C. Edward Robins and Psychotherapy as Working Out Trauma: “Built On A Lie”: Perversion in an Everyday Subject and Donald Trump. He used Freud and Lacan as lenses for various case studies, as well as an analysis of Donald Trump. Dr. Robins most recent publication is “Staging The Crucifixion of the Father: Flight 9525’s Game of the Gaze” in Perversion Now!
Attendees were then treated to a screening of Dr. Patricia Gherovici’s film Psychoanalysis in El Barrio, which follows stories of psychoanalysts and patients in Latino communities across the country. Dr. Gherovici’s lecture, Conversion Disorder: Colonial Trauma and the “Souls” of the Barrio, addressed the idea that psychoanalysis is not seen as appropriate work with the poor. Her forthcoming book, Transgender Psychoanalysis: A Lacanian Perspective on Sexual Difference, is expected in June 2017 with Routledge.
Dr. D’Onofrio presented an extended case study through a variety of lenses in Desire, Despair, and the Presence of an Absence: Relational Trauma and Therapeutic (Re-)Enactments. Dr. D’Onofrio will be presenting Psychological Implications of Crisis and Trauma at the Center for Catholic Leadership and Faith-Based Education’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Series in early May.
The conference wrapped up with a group discussion led by the speakers where attendees were able to ask questions, present trauma issues they face in their work, and discuss solutions. Read more about the conference.