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Editorials

DEMOCRACY AND PSYCHOANALYSIS: MINDING THE GAP by Hattie Myers

Democracy, psychoanalysis, and Room share a powerful connection. They were created to contain and facilitate the many voices that comprise (and conflict with) our polities, ourselves, and, in the case of Room, the space between ourselves and our societies. This is not coincidental. As Jill Gentile explains in her book Feminine Law, Free Speech, and the Voice of Desire, there is a resonance between the method of free association underlying the work of psychoanalysis and the right of free speech which is the bedrock of democracy.

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Essays

THE CULTURING OF PSYCHOANALYSIS by Karim G. Dajani

From my very first contact with psychoanalysis, a fascination in the theory and practice took hold of me. But becoming a psychoanalyst was a bit unimaginable. How would a lower-middle-class Palestinian immigrant navigate such a life goal? How could I possibly pay for years of analysis and navigate an environment I perceived as potentially hostile to me? I really did not know, but the calling did not subside.

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Essays

A FAMILY ROMANCE by Jeri Isaacson

In mythology, in fairy tales, and in psychoanalysis, losing one’s sight often indicates that a disaster has occurred, an event so unbearable that it is no longer possible to look at it. Yet in the ongoing scourge that is the Trump administration, Trump cannot bear that we look away from the disaster.

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Poems

CLYTEMNESTRA by Sara Mansfield Taber

Sara Mansfield Taber is the author of Born Under an Assumed Name: The Memoir of a Cold War Spy’s Daughter, the writer’s guide Chance Particulars: A Writer’s Field Notebook, and two books of literary journalism. Her poetry, essays, travel, and opinion pieces have appeared in literary magazines such as The American Scholar and newspapers such as the Washington Post. A psychologist and social worker, she has taught creative nonfiction writing for twenty years.

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Essays

VAGINAL VERITAS by Jill Gentile

In a recent interview1, Adam Phillips ventured the hypothesis that psychoanalysis was invented to address the problem of misogyny. This was a bold and unusual statement, and though we’ve long been initiated into Phillips’s refreshing, even scandalous, takes on often otherwise mundane or familiar assumptions, this seemed, at least to me, an astonishing statement, striking not because it was outlandish, but because it was utterly, perceptively true.

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Art

THE BACCHAE: THE FEMINIZATION OF VIOLENCE by Gala Garrido

From time immemorial, there have been crimes committed by women who were driven to pursue their own power. These transgressive crimes center on the tearing down of established systems. They make it possible for us to reflect upon the meaning of the offenders, sacrifice in Euripides’s Bacchae: offenders who, beyond their frantic alienation, rise, as Medea did, through a reflective process that leads to a destruction that does not horrify them and that few of them repent.

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Essays

#USTOO, SIGMUND by Elizabeth Cutter Evert

I am writing in the spirit of #MeToo to bear witness to damage that has been done to a subset of women I have known personally in my thirty years of practice as a psychoanalyst, who felt pressured by the value placed on sexuality in the cultural milieu of the 1960s and, 70s and in the psychoanalytic circles they came to for help. I am also writing because I think these women’s stories offer a window into ways the mid-to-late-twentieth-century sexual revolution was experienced differently in various parts of the United States. This inquiry is part of a larger project, where I have been exploring ways to bridge cultural divides that block collaboration on a humanitarian political agenda.

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Art

CITY OF WOMEN by Francesca Schwartz

City of Women is an encounter with the confusion about what happens to a woman’s body over her lifetime. We become divided subjects from the beginning — separated from the womb and ourselves in birth. Then the divided mind, now we become both subject and object, observer and the observed.

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Essays

THE FEMINIST FUTURE IS NONBINARY by Catherine Baker-Pitts

I’m taken aback when Gloria Steinem, the “face of feminism,” announces on the Today show that she’s had “a little fat removed from above my eyes so I didn’t look like Mao Zedong.” Steinem is referring to the puffy-faced Chinese revolutionary who died in 1976, around the time when her model-thin figure was featured on a Manhattan billboard, erected by antagonists intent on reducing Steinem to her body.

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Essays

A LESBIAN LEANS IN by Ellen Marakowitz

At the 2019 Oscars, Period. End of Sentence won the Oscar for Best Documentary Short. The film, about fighting stigma against menstruation in rural India, marked the first time a film about menstruation made it to the Oscars stage.

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Essays

PSYCHOANALYSIS AND PERFORMANCE ART: GO FIGURE! by Aneta Stojnić

Currently trauma is defined less in terms of the personal (the individual) and more in terms of the collective (the social-political) with its potentially insidious soul-destroying qualities. This is Maria Root’s concept of everyday or “insidious trauma.” Root here is referring to the “traumatogenic effects of oppression,” racism, marginalization, and hegemony.

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Essays

REVISITING A DREAM by Joan Golden-Alexis

Currently trauma is defined less in terms of the personal (the individual) and more in terms of the collective (the social-political) with its potentially insidious soul-destroying qualities. This is Maria Root’s concept of everyday or “insidious trauma.” Root here is referring to the “traumatogenic effects of oppression,” racism, marginalization, and hegemony.

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Essays

A MAN WHO HATES WOMEN by Raquel Berman

As a psychoanalyst practicing in Mexico City, I have been thinking, writing and researching for decades about the unfathomable phenomenon of feminicide. The cultural, sociological, political, and economic complexities that have contributed to the killing of women are, I believe, intrinsically tied to the fundamental ideology of machismo.

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Art

ENOUGH OF FALSE HEROES by José Vívenes

José Vívenes is a Venezuela-based painter. His work reconsiders the gaze given to collective references. Vívenes assumes painting as a means of communication to reflect on the complex circumstances that his country, Venezuela, is going through.

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Essays

VENEZUELA: A PSYCHOSOCIAL PERSPECTIVE by Mireya Lozada

My country has sunk into a complex humanitarian crisis led by a corrupt autocracy. From the laments of the millions of migrants who comprise the Venezuelan exodus around the world, to country-wide demands for food, medicine, and basic services, to the denunciations of human rights violations and the cries of political prisoners, Venezuela is in grave decline.

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Dispatches

DISPATCHES 6.19: CUATRO POR VENEZUELA FOUNDATION

Cuatro Por Venezuela delivers medicine, food, and supplies to Venezuelans in need. Our volunteer-run organization distributes hundreds of packages to our trusted network of local NGOs, foundations, hospitals, rural community centers, senior facilities, orphanages, and schools.

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Art

DISORDERED: Conversations about mental health and society by Rachel Brown

Disordered was a collaborative, participatory street art project designed to destigmatize mental health challenges like depression and anxiety, and reframe health as a societal issue. The project took the form of conversations, stickers, signs, and a mural in public spaces around New York City. Through a combination of social practice and guerrilla strategies, Disordered intervened in public places, creating a space for personal interactions about the connections between mental health challenges and societal issues. It pushed ideas about how our history, culture, political, and economic systems affect our health in order to inspire personal, social, and political transformations.

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Essays

VAMIK VOLKAN: A BRIEF INTRODUCTION by Richard Grosse

Vamik Volkan was born in 1932 in a Turkish family on Cyprus, received his medical education in Turkey, and trained in psychiatry and psychoanalysis in the United States. From a career in psychoanalysis in which he published many papers, he eventually found his way to creating a discipline in the application of psychoanalytic ideas to international conflict.

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Dispatches

DISPATCHES 6.19: APCS CALL FOR PAPERS

ASSOCIATION FOR THE PSYCHOANALYSIS OF CULTURE AND SOCIETY: CALL FOR PAPERS > Displacement, Precarity & Community. Submissions are due by June 30, 2019. Rutgers University Continuing Education. Conference Center, New Brunswick, New Jersey. OCTOBER, 25-26,2019

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Essays

A BATHROOM WITHOUT A SEAT by Yitzi Katz

I work at an agency in a central city in Israel that focuses on treating children who are survivors and perpetrators of sexual violence. The office has one bathroom with two private toilet rooms: a toilet without a toilet seat for men and a women’s bathroom.

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