British Psychological Society History of the Psychological Disciplines Seminar Series

British Psychological Society History of the Psychological Disciplines Seminar Series
Organiser: Professor Sonu Shamdasani (UCL)

Monday 30 January 2012, 6pm

Psychoanalysis between Modern Brazil and the “Pindorama Matriarchy”

Professor Cristiana Facchinetti (History of Science and Health, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil    .

Psychoanalysis has been widely used in Brazil for diagnosing the country’s reality. Indeed, this analysis has often involved interpretations marked by value judgements about the material repressed in local traditional customs and unconscious and folklore fantasies. Generally speaking, the intellectuals in the period between the two world wars deemed it feasible to transfer the theory of the unconscious, heterogeneous, singular subject directly from the plane of the individual, with his/her subjective relationships and history, to the plane of the collective, resulting in unprecedented interpretations of the nation’s developing identity.

It is our assumption that different intellectual and academic traditions in Brazil paved the way for these quite peculiar and occasionally contradictory methods of appropriating the new systems of thought circulating in different domestic and international circles in the 1920s-40s. In the specific case of this work, we aim to demonstrate some of the specific agendas that linked the reception of psychoanalysis in Brazil to the construction of the nation’s identity and its modernisation, which is very unlikely if one starts off from the theoretical proposals made by Sigmund Freud.


Location: UCL Department of Clinical, Educational and Health Psychology, Room 544, 5th Floor, 1-19 Torrington Place, London WC1E 7HJDirections: From the main reception, go through the double doors at the back and turn left, walk the length of this corridor and at the very end turn left again – you will find yourself in front of the ‘West’ Lifts. Take these to 5th Floor. On exiting the lift, turn right through double doors and then left through single door, walk the length of this corridor pass through another door and then turn right – you will see a marble table ahead. Room 544 is straight ahead.

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