PSYCHOANALYTIC DIALOGUES ON THE
Humanity’s impact on the Earth is so profound that a new geological era — the “Anthropocene” — has been coined to capture our dominating presence in the natural world. Anthropogenic climate change is an existential risk that threatens a quarter of the planet's biodiversity with extinction and humanity’s long-term potential. The catastrophic impacts of more severe weather are far-ranging and disparate, spawning massive international migration, human displacement, and a range of psychological responses.
How do we make sense of our psychological responses to the climate crisis? How do we think about psychic life in relation to ecology and the natural world? What is our analytic understanding of the relationship between the biosphere and mental health? Though privileging human intra- and interrelationships, the analytic lens has much to offer in terms of how we relate to the climate crisis and our larger ecosystem.
This reading group will gather around selected classical and contemporary psychoanalytic texts every two weeks to stimulate thought and inspire a greater sensitivity to the more-than-human environment in psychic life.
NCSPP is aware that historically psychoanalysis has either excluded or pathologized groups outside of the dominant population in terms of age, race, ethnicity, nationality, language, gender, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, disability, and size. As an organization, we are committed to bringing awareness to matters of anti-oppression, inequity, inequality, diversity, and inclusion as they pertain to our educational offerings, our theoretical orientation, our community, and the broader world we all inhabit.
Psychoanalysis has historically excluded and/or pathologized groups outside the dominant population, based on age, race, ethnicity, nationality, language, gender, religion, sexual orientation, SES, disability, size, and more. This reading group will consider—for ourselves and the people we work with clinically—the ways in which our sociocultural positions and identities may shape our unconscious and conscious lives in the context of our environment and ecology. We will pay particular attention to the exclusion in psychoanalysis of ecology and the natural world, of which we are apart and a part from. We will examine what Dr. Susan Kassouf has deemed an "anenvironmental" orientation to the world and self—a culturally dominant orientation that brackets out the more-than-human environment. Furthermore, the psychological responses to the ecological crises of the Anthropocene are likely very different across the North-South divide, and also within communities everywhere. For example, the wealthiest 1% of individuals emit 100x as much carbon dioxide each year as the poorest 50%. The Global South then pays for the carbon-rich lifestyles of the North through traumatizing losses of land and life. The group will consider the idea of differentiated responsibility (based on environmental and socioeconomic injustice arising from the climate crisis) and postcolonial psychoanalytic perspectives. Lastly, this group will attempt to create conditions of safety and respect for the range of responses and experiences likely to be evoked by the topic.
Ronna Milo Haglili, Psy.D., is a bilingual (English-Hebrew) clinical psychologist working at the the Bay Area Clinical Associates (BACA) mental health clinic and in private practice in San Mateo and virtually. She sees children, adolescents, and adults. She has presented and published on her dissertation research exploring the potential links between trauma and social activism.
Natasha Oxenburgh, M.A., is a clinical psychologist in training with a background in psychodynamic community mental health, working with complex trauma and SMI. Natasha's dissertation research concerns the psychological responses to the climate crisis viewed through a psychoanalytic lens, specifically utilizing Harold Searles' writings on the nonhuman environment in psychic development.
This introductory course is for clinicians of all levels; some introductory background in psychoanalytic literature may be helpful.
Enrollees who cancel at least SEVEN DAYS prior to the event date will receive a refund minus a $35 administrative charge. No refunds will be allowed after this time. Transfer of registrations are not allowed.