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Analyze This!

Analyze This! presents commentary on emerging topics in the media and within the psychoanalytic profession. It is intended to promote thoughtful discussion of the bidirectional influence of cultural issues and the practice of psychoanalysis. The column is written by David Jachim, PhD, FIPA.

David Jachim is a psychoanalyst who practices in Seattle, working primarily with adults and older adolescents. He is a Past President of NPSI and currently serves as a Board Director for that organization.

Comments on any of the essays posted here may be sent to David Jachim at dpjachim@comcast.net.

 

Time of the Wolf 

The home screen on my cellphone depicts a photograph of a Gray Timber Wolf staring into the camera. Its countenance has a focus, vigilance, and a penetration that is framed in both confident and poise.  Each time I see it I am reminded of my own recessed, primal aggression, a “shadow side” written about by Sheldon Kopp long ago. We all have it, no matter how evolved we each may believe we are. We share this with the animal world. And, like the wolf, we counter our shadow sides with loyalty to the social boundaries we have agreed upon.

The wolf is similar. It is socially connected and dependent on the pack. It mates for life, co-parents its young, attacks only when it or the pack is threatened and does not kill out of hatred, malice or envy. Its highest priority is the preservation of the pack. In this sense it is a very moral animal.

Yet there are lone wolves as well. They are loners, move from pack to pack, use whatever resources are available and move on. They are not loyal to or protective of the pack. They care only for themselves. They are not moral animals.

We now have the representations of lone wolves among us. They have just been given passage to the highest political offices in our land. They feign social behavior but they say and do their own thing with no responsibility about who or how they affect others. They exploit, erode and degrade the decency of their office and the pack. They attack without provocation. They believe they are outside and above the pack. They are amoral animals.

As analysts and psychotherapists we are witnesses to the denuding effect of the lone wolves on the pack, most acutely our patients. In our consulting rooms we now see the hopelessness, hatred, anxiety and fear of the future that the lone wolves have proliferated. These increased level of tensions only distract and disintegrate our patients’ ability to focus on their inner world because the lone wolves have made the outer world so frightening. We ourselves may be sometimes overwhelmed with this new deluge of affect and become weary, hopeless and sleepy. We may lose our vigilance.

We must learn from both our moral wolf brothers and sisters and thoughtfully acknowledge our shadow side, our primitive aggressive energy. We need to tap this darker energy and use it for the greater good. We can do this within our work with patients by furiously upholding our analytic ideals, including truth, curiosity, mutuality and inclusion.  We must aggressively renew our commitment to doing impeccable analytic work and in this way counter the “moral laxity” of the lone wolves who aspire to power, divisiveness, elimination of difference and irresponsibility. We must protect the pack, our patients, our families, and our communities. Perhaps now, more than ever, it is the time of the wolf.

 

David Jachim, PhD, FIPA

dpjachim@comcast.net


Après Coup: Psychoanalysis and the Arts

Welcome to the Après-Coup “corner” of the NPSI website. Our aim is to demonstrate how psychoanalytic principles are integrally related to aesthetic experience. We welcome reviews and commentary by our members reflecting their experiences with the arts, including film, theater, opera, and the visual arts.

French psychoanalyst Haydée Faimberg (2007) first used the term après-coup in 1998 to make Freud’s word, Nachträglichkeit, (defined as psychic temporality) more explicit. She says, “The broader conceptualization of Nachträglichkeit that I have proposed plays an active part in the process of assigning new meaning, retroactively (usually through interpretation) – and even giving a meaning, for the first time (usually through construction) – to what the analysand says and cannot say.”

We are using Faimberg’s concept of après-coup to describe how a viewer/reader/listener may be impacted by a specific work of art to the extent that they reflect on its meaning retroactively.

Faimberg, H. (2007). A plea for a broader concept of Nachträglichkeit. Psychoanal. Q., 76: 1221-1240.

For additional information or to submit an essay contact Maxine Nelson at maxinenelson1@gmail.com

 

To read more click on any of the titles listed below: 
“An Experience of Midsummer Revelry and Reverie” by Margaret Bergmann-Ness, LICSW, July 2014 [.pdf Document]

“The “Face” in Aesthetics and Psychoanalysis” by Maxine Nelson, LICSW, June 2013[.pdf Document]

“Sigmund Freud and Melanie Klein: You Get the Picture” by Daniel Benveniste, PhD, May 2012 [.pdf Document]

“Peter Weir’s Fearless: Understanding the Manic Defense” by Maxine Nelson, LICSW, March 2012 [.pdf Document]


Associations: Psychoanalytic Essays

This section of the website is devoted to essays by our members on a range of topics—some of them serious and others lighthearted—from a psychoanalytic perspective. Our aim is to demonstrate, outside of the necessary privacy of the consulting room, how psychoanalytic principles may be applied to universal human concerns.

To read more click on any of the titles listed below.

Deconsecrating War by Robert Fahrer, PhD

What's Under a Comb Over? by Lynn Cunningham, Phd, LICSW

Interview with Mark Solms, PhD FIPA December 2015

Interview with Maxine Anderson, MD FIPA December 2015

Institute Spotlight: Interview of Caron Harrang, LICSW, FIPA by Lisa Holotek, PhD, FIPA  

Remembering Harold Searles by Caron Harrang, LICSW, FIPA   

Free Association and The Fundamental Rule by Lynn Cunningham, PhD LICSW 

Maxine Nelson’s presentation of the film Ida at COR’s Saturday Descargas by Shierry Weber Nicholsen, PhD FIPA 

In Remembrance of James Grotstein: Friend, Colleague and Bionian Scholar by Joseph Aguayo, PhD FIPA 

Interview with Giuseppe Civitarese, MD, FIPA July 2014 

Interview with Clara Nemas, MD, FIPA July 2014 

Reflections on the CIPS/NAPsaC Clinical Conference, May 16-18, 2014 by Maxine Anderson, MD, FIPA, June 2014 Reflections on the CIPS/NAPsaC Clinical Conference, May 16-18, 2014

Musings on Mourning and the End of Analysis: A Review of “Turn! Turn! Turn! The Patient’s Contribution to the Interpretive Process in the Terminal Phase of Analysis” by Adriana Prengler, LMHC, FIPA, June 2014 Musings on Mourning and the End of Analysis: A Review of “Turn! Turn! Turn! The Patient’s Contribution to the Interpretive Process in the Terminal Phase of Analysis” 

Bion, “O” and the Question of Psychic Change: Report on the Second Pre-EBOR 2014 Reverie by Shierry Nicholsen, PhD, FIPA, February 2014 Bion, “O” and the Question of Psychic Change: Report on the Second Pre-EBOR 2014 Reverie 

Bringing Teaching to Life: An Educational Workshop with Deborah Cabaniss by Barbara Sewell, LMHC, FIPA & Darren Thompson, MD, February 2014 Bringing Teaching to Life: An Educational Workshop with Deborah Cabaniss 

Prague Congress Summary by Maxine Anderson, MD, FIPA, October 2013 Prague Congress Summary 

A Candidate’s Perspective on the Prague Congress by Lynn Cunningham, LICSW, October 2013 A Candidate’s Perspective on the Prague Congress 

Beyond Plurality – The IPA Committee on Conceptual Integration by Judy K Eekhoff, PhD, FIPA, October 2013 Beyond Plurality – The IPA Committee on Conceptual Integration 

Prague Congress: Ecumenical, Transparent, and Transcendent by David Jachim, PhD, FIPA, October 2013 Prague Congress: Ecumenical, Transparent, and Transcendent

Learning from the Master by Joshua Cohen, LMHC, June 2013 Learning from the Master 

Robert Oelsner on Heinrich Racker: Countertransference as a Technical Tool by Daniel Benveniste, PhD, June 2013 Countertransference as a Technical Tool

Memorial Essay: “Betty Joseph (1917-2013) As I Knew Her” by Robert Oelsner, MD, FIPA, April 2013 Betty Joseph (1917-2013) As I Knew Her 

A Review: “The Symbology of Popular Song” by Albert Mason, MD, FIPA, June 2011The Symbology of Popular Song 

Interview with Albert Mason, MD, FIPA by Marianne Robinson, PhD, FIPA, March 2011Albert Mason Interview 


Psychoanalysis in the News

This section of the website features recent videos and noteworthy journal, newspaper, and magazine articles that support the efficacy of psychoanalysis or explain in non-technical language its philosophical roots and current applications. To read more click on any of the links below.

Jonathan Shedler’s paper, The Efficacy of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy (American Psychologist, 2010)[.pdf Document]

British Psychoanalytic Society, Video interview of the Luminaries of British Object Relations: Betty Joseph, Hanna Segal et. al.[Youtube Video]

Evan Osnoss’s article, Meet Dr. Freud: Letter from China (The New Yorker, January 10, 2011)[Outside Link].

Adam Gopnik’s article, Man Goes to See a Doctor (The New Yorker, August 24, 1998)[Outside Link].

Molly Knight Raskin’s article, The Idea that wouldn’t die (Psychology Today, June 2011)[Outside Link].


Speaker's Bureau

NPSI can arrange for one of our psychoanalyst members to speak to your academic institution, professional organization, or work group on a variety of topics related to psychoanalytic education and training or to the practice of psychoanalysis.

The following are examples of subject areas that speakers may address:

  • What is psychoanalysis and how does it differ from other forms of mental health treatment such as hypnotherapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, or dialectical behavioral therapy?

  • Infant Observation: The value of experience-based training for psychotherapists and psychoanalysts-in-training.

  • What is a psychoanalytic approach to the treatment of autistic spectrum disorders?

To discuss your group’s particular interests please send an email indicating your name, organization, telephone, email address, and the nature of your request toadmin@NPSI.us.com with “Speakers Bureau” in the subject line.