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Saturday, May 15th 2021

A Day with Dr. Jeanne Wolff-Bernstein, Ph.D.

Dr. Jeanne Wolff-Bernstein, Ph.D.
presented by Toronto Institute for Contemporary Psychoanalysis (TICP)

Saturday, May 15, 2021, 10:00am to 3:00pm - A Zoom Virtual Conference Event

See our book list here.
About the Day

Morning Session: Phylogenetic Transmission, a Freudian concept lingering in the shadows of the Transgenerational Transmission of Trauma

The long-forgotten, or nearly cast aside idea of phylogenetic heritage will be unearthed and its multifarious history retraced in the entire work of Sigmund Freud. While Freud’s colleagues discouraged him to hold onto this Lamarckian idea, he held steadfast and maintained until the end of his life that the individual has access to a pre-historic truth that brings him in touch with the life of his ancestors. While the enormous literature on The Transgenerational Transmission of Trauma has largely ignored the concept of the phylogenetic heritage, recent findings in the field of epigenetics seem to sustain Freud’s controversial theory.

Afternoon Session: Between the Artist’s Studio and the Psycho-Analytic Office: A Comparison of Lucian Freud and Sigmund Freud’s Interior Spaces

Even though Freud’s grandchildren did not show a great interest in their grandfather’s work and cast their attention to other occupations, Lucian Freud, the world famous painter and son of Ernst Freund (Freud’s fourth child) developed unconsciously, I will argue, a very similar style of composing his portraits to the way his grandfather staged his analyses. Surprising affinities between their separate working styles will be discussed in this talk.

Learning Objectives

Morning Session

a) Participants will learn about the history of the Freudian idea of phylogenetic heritage.

b) Participants will receive an overview of the copious literature about the transgenerational transmission of trauma and learn about the possible links to Freud’s controversial idea about a phylogenetic heritage.

c) Participants will learn about recent findings in the field of epigentics and uncover the powerful connections to Freud’s early findings about the individual’s capacity to form links to a pre-historic past.

Afternoon Session

a) Participants will learn about Lucian Freud’s (1922-2011) work and his particular working style of posing his subjects for his paintings.

b) Participants will receive an overview of Freud’s essential technical rules of how to conduct a psychoanalytic treatment.

c) Participants will learn about the important commonalities of the transference-countertransference dynamics both in the conduct of a psychoanalytic treatment and the staging of a painterly portrait.

Schedule of the Day

9:30 a.m. Introduction of Speaker (Dr. Kobrick)

9:30 - 10:30 Morning Session: The Limit of Intimacy and the Intimacy of Limit: The Emergence of Play in Relation to the Analyst and to Internal Objects. (Dr. Wolff-Bernstein)

10:30 - 11:30 Discussion with Audience

11:30 - 12:30 Lunch (on your own)

12:30 - 1:30 Afternoon Session: Between the Artist’s Studio and the Psycho-Analytic Office: A Comparison of Lucian Freud and Sigmund Freud’s Interior Spaces (Dr. Wolff-Bernstein)

1:30 - 2:20 Audience Discussion

2:30 Closing Remarks (Dr. Kobrick)

About the Presenter:

Jeanne Wolff-Bernstein, Ph.D., was the past president and supervising and personal analyst at the Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California (PINC). She is on the faculty at PINC and at the NYU Post-Doctoral Program for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy. She was the 2008 Fulbright Freud Visiting Scholar in Psychoanalysis at the Freud Museum, Vienna, Austria and is the chair of the Scientific Advisory Board at the Freud Museum, Vienna. She is a member of the Wiener Arbeitskreis für Psychoanalyse (WAP) and sits on the board of the WAP. She lives and works in Vienna now as a practicing psychoanalysis. She has published numerous articles on the interfaces between psychoanalysis, the visual arts and film and the work of Jacques Lacan.

Her more recent book chapters include "Psychoanalytic Tattoos: Hysteria", in Body Image and Identity in Contemporary Societies, E Sukhanova, HO Thomashoff (Eds), Routledge (2015), "Living Between Two Languages, a Bi-focal Perspective", in Immigration in Psychoanalysis: Locating Ourselves, J Beltsiou (Edt), Routledge (2016), and "Dora, the Un-Ending and Ever Unraveling Story" in Dora, Hysteria and Gender, Reconsidering Freud’s Case Study, D Finzi & H Westerink (Eds), Leuven University Press (2018).

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