CALL FOR CHAPTER PROPOSALS–LITERATURE AND PSYCHOLOGY: WRITING, TRAUMA AND THE SELF
Editor’s Affiliation: PhD, Assistant Professor, Bingol University (Turkey), Department of English Language and Literature
Posts Tagged ‘ trauma ’
CALL FOR CHAPTER PROPOSALS–LITERATURE AND PSYCHOLOGY: WRITING, TRAUMA AND THE SELF
Conference Report by Jason Crouthamel
On November 25-26, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin hosted the conference, “Languages of Trauma,” sponsored by the Institut für Kulturwissenschaft (Humboldt-Universität) and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and Brooks College at Grand Valley State University. The conference aimed to move trauma research towards new sites of inquiry and innovative methodologies, concentrating on interconnections between language and trauma in audio-visual media, visual culture, national historiographies, medical and political discourse, literary narratives, and the fine arts. The conference speakers focused on questions of disciplinary terminology and explored how different cultures and interest groups – medical professionals, traumatized individuals and communities, patients, families, politicians, artists, and academic scholars – shape distinct notions and conceptions of trauma. A central question that unified the conversations between international interdisciplinary colleagues included: how do shifting and at times competing theories and representations of trauma in different disciplines alter our understanding of trauma?
25-26 November 2016 at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
This conference explores the diversity of languages of psychological trauma in comparative cross-national perspectives and in varying socio-cultural contexts. Besides variations in the medical, socio-historical and political conceptualization of individual and/or collective traumas, it will analyze medial-representations, artistic reflections as well as more subjective forms of traumatic experiences and perceptions of the traumatized, including men, women and children—both as victims of mental/emotional damage and as perpetrators of violence.
Moving trauma research towards new sites of inquiry and innovative methodologies, Languages of Trauma concentrates specifically on dynamics and interconnections between language and trauma in audio-visual media, visual culture, national historiographies, medical and political discourse, literary narratives, and the fine arts. Within this broad subject area, the conference speakers will focus on questions of disciplinary terminology, as well as medical aetiology, diagnosis and treatment, and we will ask how different cultures and interest groups – medical professionals, traumatized individuals and communities, patients, families, politicians, artists and academic scholars – shaped distinct notions and conceptions of “trauma.” How do historically shifting and at times competing understandings of trauma alter and transform forms of trauma languages? Particular attention will be given to the question of how “trauma” is displayed in film corpora from various periods of the 20th and 21st centuries (in medical and feature films as well as in documentaries), and their connection to memory politics, national identity constructions and scientific discourse.
Integrating scholarship across nationalities (Denmark, Finland, Germany, Israel, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, UK, USA) and various disciplines – including film, media and culture studies, medicine, psychology, history, art history, literature and communications, and international political science – the conference investigates the nexus between trauma symptoms, histories, mediality and epistemology. Continue reading
Peter Leese and Jason Crouthamel, editors, Traumatic Memories of the Second World War and After (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016)
This collection investigates the social and cultural history of trauma to offer a comparative analysis of its individual, communal, and political effects in the twentieth century. Particular attention is given to witness testimony, to procedures of personal memory and collective commemoration, and to visual sources as they illuminate the changing historical nature of trauma. The essays draw on diverse methodologies, including oral history, and use varied sources such as literature, film and the broadcast media. The contributions discuss imaginative, communal and political responses, as well as the ways in which the later welfare of traumatized individuals is shaped by medical, military, and civilian institutions. Incorporating innovative methodologies and offering a thorough evaluation of current research, the book shows new directions in historical trauma studies.
Jason Crouthamel and Peter Leese, Editors, Psychological Trauma and the Legacies of the First World War (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016)
This transnational, interdisciplinary study of traumatic neurosis moves beyond the existing histories of medical theory, welfare, and symptomatology. The essays explore the personal traumas of soldiers and civilians in the wake of the First World War; they also discuss how memory and representations of trauma are transmitted between patients, doctors and families across generations. The book argues that so far the traumatic effects of the war have been substantially underestimated. Trauma was shaped by gender, politics, and personality. To uncover the varied forms of trauma ignored by medical and political authorities, this volume draws on diverse sources, such as family archives and narratives by children of traumatized men, documents from film and photography, memoirs by soldiers and civilians. This innovative study challenges us to re-examine our approach to the complex psychological effects of the First World War.
Two upcoming events at the UCL Centre for the History of Psychological Disciplines:
PROFESSOR MARK MICALE: A GLOBAL HISTORY OF TRAUMA
UCL, Tuesday 16th June 2015, 6-7.30pm
Historical trauma studies continue to burgeon, but the work in this
flourishing field of scholarship is derived from a small number of
purely Euro-American catastrophic events, which serve as historical and
psychological paradigms. Micale, who contributed to earlier debates in
the field with his edited collection Traumatic Pasts: History,
Psychiatry, and Trauma in the Modern Age, 1870-1930, argues that
scholars need now to look beyond the West toward a new, more genuinely
global perspective on the history of trauma. He focuses in particular on
new research being done about Asia.
PSYCHOANALYTIC FILIATIONS: MAPPING THE PSYCHOANALYTIC MOVEMENT
UCL, Saturday 18th July 2015 2-6pm
How does one write the history of the psychoanalytic movement? This
event marks the publication of Ernst Falzeder’s book, Psychoanalytic
Filiations: Mapping the Psychoanalytic Movement (Karnac Books), with a
series of debates and discussions on this theme.
Written over a span of nearly a quarter century, the “red thread”
running through the book is the network of psychoanalytic “filiations”
(who analysed whom), and how crucial concepts of depth psychology were
developed before the background of those intense relationships: for
example, Freud’s technical recommendations, the therapeutic use of
countertransference and the view of the psychoanalytic situation as a
social, interactive process, the introduction of the anal phase, the
birth of the object-relations-model as opposed to the drive-model in
psychoanalysis, or the psychotherapeutic treatment of psychoses. Several
chapters deal with key figures in that history, such as Sándor Ferenczi,
Karl Abraham, Eugen Bleuler, Otto Rank, and C. G. Jung, their respective
relationships to each other and to Freud, and the consequences that
their collaboration, as well as conflicts, with him had for the further
development of psychoanalysis up to the present day. Other chapters give
an overview on the publications of Freud’s texts and on unpublished
documents (the “unknown Freud”), the editorial policy of the
publications of Freud’s letters.
Dr. Ernst Falzeder (UCL)
Dr. Shaul Bar-Heim (Birkbeck College)
Arthur Eaton (UCL)
Dr. Matt ffytche (University of Essex)
Prof. Brett Kahr (Roehampton University)
Dr. Sarah Marks (University of Cambridge)
Dee McQuillan (UCL)
Dr. Richard Skues (London Metropolitan University)
Chair: Prof. Sonu Shamdasani (UCL)
Full details and registration online here:
The recent issue of The London Review of Books has a fascinating review by historian Thomas Laqueur (“We Are All Victims Now”) of The Empire of Trauma: An Inquiry into the Condition of Victimhood by Didier Fassin and Richard Rechtman (translated by Rachel Gomme). Cutting a bit against the grain of accepted wisdom on the subject among historians of the human sciences, Laqueur concludes:
I take trauma as it is wielded even in these [various professional] communities to be largely epiphenomenal and strategic, and part of a larger story. The empire of trauma, the elevation or degradation of the term into a floating signifier, is the result of processes that we see at work elsewhere. Like so many others (‘tragedy’, ‘agony’), it is a word that has been translated from another realm and retains only wisps of its original meaning. Many more people are ‘passive aggressive’ than ever before; Bernard Madoff is a ‘sociopath’ not a ‘scoundrel’. This doesn’t matter very much; I don’t think that the drift of any of these words away from their narrower technical meanings into common usage makes much difference; I don’t think, and I am not sure Fassin and Rechtman do either, that the ubiquity of a word speaks to its efficacy, though they do seem to think that it testifies to the power of the newly constructed category.
More important, I don’t think they make the case that the category of trauma as it has been constructed in particular professional communities has in fact transformed reality, offered a language for victims to speak about historical wrongs and so on. I would suggest that the empire of trauma, in the sense of a universal acceptance that the suffering of others matters, that psychic wounds demand our attention, is part of a revolution that began in the 18th century, and whose moral dilemmas are still with us. ‘I do believe that in the end humanity will win,’ Goethe wrote in 1782. ‘I am only afraid that at the same time the world will have turned into one huge hospital where everyone is everyone else’s humane nurse.’
The review is available here to subscribers.