Saturday, April 3, 2010

Trauma and Representation

For the past few years I have been increasingly engaged in an investigation into how depictions of traumatic events such as war, disaster, poverty and disease operate within market economies and exert influence on the audience and the subjects. This has led to increasingly complex models of how such depictions work, what specific outcomes can be targeted and how we might take this forward with a balance between theory and practice, or creation and critique. Concurrently I have been serving on the Board of Directors for the Seattle Psychoanalytic Society and Institute.

On Saturday, April 10, psychoanalysts Sue Radant, Ph.D, Rebecca Meredith, MA, and I will present at the Northwest Psychoanalytic Forum.

Questions that we will explore include: In what ways can visual representations of traumatic events facilitate the movement from dissociative responses towards increased metabolization and integration within those directly affected? In what ways can those desired outcomes be defeated or impeded by media representation? What are the differences and issues between working for those who have primary experience of the trauma and those who have secondary experiences through other media? To what degree do clinical models, which focus on a carefully established and protected space in which clinician and patient can work, apply to media models in which work is broadcast to the general public?

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