COWAP Newsletter March 2014
Overall Chair: Frances Thomson-Salo
Co-Chair for Europe: Ingrid Moeslein-Teising
Co-Chair for Latin America: Cândida Sé Holovko
Co-Chair for North American: Cecile Bassen
European members: Laura Tognoli Pasquali and Ester Palerm Mari
Latin America members: Silvia Jadur and Ruth Axelrod Praes
Consultant: Gertraud Schlesinger Kipp
IPSO representative: Monica Fraenkel de Alancon
COWAP Newsletter on the IPA web
We would like to give our thanks to Stefano Bolognini, the IPA president, for his support in the diffusion of the COWAP Newsletter. You can read it on the IPA web: www.ipa.org.uk and click on Publications, after that click on Online Journals.
International Women’s Day March 8th
The International Women’s Day was established in 1909 to promote equal rights.
See also the report below by Cândida Sé Holovko about Alicia Beatriz Iacuzzi, Full Member of APA and COWAP, who received one of the honorary distinctions offered annually by the Government of Junín (a Buenos Aires province) in celebration of the International Women’s Day.
SOME WORDS FROM THE NEW CO-CHAIR
INGRID MOESLEIN-TEISING, EUROPEAN CO-CHAIR
First of all I want to thank Stefano Bolognini and the board: I am very delighted in being honoured by being appointed COWAP European Co-Chair. I shall try to do my best in continuing the work that was done before me so thoughtfully and wisely by Elina Reenkola in the very best COWAP tradition. Also I am looking forward very much to work with Cecile Bassen and Cândida Sé Holovko as well as continuing the extremely rewarding and fruitful work with Frances Thomson-Salo!
My task will be to continue in completing the European group of COWAP representatives and to proceed in creating a European task – as well as continue to support the interregional exchange and create fruitful and rewarding spaces.
I shall myself in Germany be supported by our very active German group. We shall organize a COWAP conference in Berlin, 5th and 6th of September, in the International Psychoanalytical University on “Female perspectives and psychoanalysis – past, present, future.” With this conference we shall honour both Mariam Alizade, whose book “Female sensuality” will then be presented in German, and Margarete Mitscherlich, who shared the issues of psychoanalysis and feminism, and will be in the focus the same (the conference languages will be English and German).
As usual, we shall have a COWAP-workshop within the DPV-conference. This time we are honoured by Christa Rohde-Dachser, who will give her paper according to the conference-theme “On the excitement of the symbols”.
Soon after having been appointed, I was able to attend the COWAP Conference in Warsaw, which was a most exciting experience, especially to see COWAP develop in former Eastern countries.
So let us all work together in promoting the COWAP idea!
CECILE BASSEN, NORTH AMERICAN CO-CHAIR
I am delighted to be the new North American Co-Chair of COWAP, and look forward to collaborating with Frances Thomson-Salo, Ingrid Moeslein-Teising, and Cândida Sé Holovko, and to future scientific exchanges.
Some current news from North America:
Arlene Kramer Richards (the previous North American Co-Chair) has organized a COWAP conference in New York City which will take place this fall, on October 11 and 12, on “Myths of the Mighty Women: What Makes a Woman?”. Participants include Irmgard Dettbarn, Giselle Galdi, Philip Matyszak, Alicia Ostriker and John Munder Ross, in addition to Arlene, Frances and myself. I hope that some of you will be able to attend.
Here in Seattle, we are continuing our tradition of offering a psychoanalytic perspective on art. Danielle Knafo from New York will be speaking here in April at a weekend colloquium at the Frye Museum on “Solitude and Relatedness in Art and Life”. She plans to address the challenges facing women who seek solitude and the unique aspects of female creative solitude in one of her lectures, titled “By Herself: Women, Creativity, and Solitude”.
We also continue to hear positive feedback about the COWAP conference on “Images of Women” held in Seattle in October, 2012. I have been invited to give the paper I delivered at that conference on “Coming of Age: Depictions of Women in Fairy Tales” at a meeting of the Oregon Psychiatric Association in Ashland, Oregon this fall.
There is a great deal of interest in the psychology of gender in North America, with many presentations and discussion groups at local and national conferences. I hope to reach out to the North American analysts with an interest in this area and see what, if any, connection they would like to have with COWAP. I also hope to canvass analytic institutes to compile reading lists of any courses they offer in gender, so this can be a resource for other institutes. I also hope to be joined soon by another member of COWAP from North America.
CÂNDIDA SÉ HOLOVKO, LATIN AMERICA CO-CHAIR
First of all, I would like to thank Stefano Bolognini, and the IPA Board, for nominating me as Co-Chair for Latin America of the IPA Women and Psychoanalysis Committee (COWAP). I am grateful for the warm welcome and the great support I have received from my Latin American colleagues. It is a great honor and challenge for me to carry on the important contributions and expertise of my predecessors. I would also like to give a warm welcome to Co-Chair Ingrid Moeslein-Teising (Co-Chair for Europe) and Cecile Bassen (Co-Chair for North America). I strongly believe that interregional communication is extremely important and I hope we will have many opportunities for very productive scientific exchanges.
One of the projects that we wish to accomplish in Latin America is to create a sort of general bibliography, which would include texts and books that are seminal to current COWAP research papers. This bibliography could enrich some seminars and courses of the Institute of psychoanalytical training, stimulate the expansion of these seminars to many other Psychoanalytical Societies of the IPA, and would be addressing themes such as homoparenthood, neosexualities, gender violence, assisted reproductions, etc. Teresa Rocha L. Haudenschild (COWAP Brazil), for example, has been giving for many years an elective course in SBPSP’s Institute about “Gender and Psychoanalysis”.
COWAP Latin America is a very active and engaged group, and has developed a lot of work on important themes that are nowadays in the spotlight of the media and even in the IPA Forum, and these themes will be part of the next event in Argentina.
On September 1st – 2nd, there will take place the XI Latin American Intergenerational Dialogue between men and women – COWAP – Buenos Aires, whose theme is: Parenthood and Gender. Incidence on Subjectivity. On this XI Dialogue we intend to think and work on the transformation of parenthood and the cultural changes that have taken place in the last decades. These changes are present in the new family configurations – mono and homo parenthood – the transformations related to gender identity and body transmutations, and finally the new access to parenthood through the employment of reproductive techniques.
The central themes proposed are broad and varied, and we encourage the development of an open space for reflection, friendliness and productive debate. In this opportunity, the XI Dialogue of COWAP will be held at the beginning of the week of the 30th Latin American Conference of FEPAL (September 3 to 6th). We will also have the esteemed presence of IPA President Stefano Bolognini, IPA vice-president Alexandra Billinghurst, Emilce Dio Bleichmar, Estela Welldon and many distinguished Latin American Psychoanalysts.
We take this opportunity as well to communicate that:
Estela Welldon received, on January the 15th 2014, the Honorary Membership in the American Psychoanalytical Association. Her work was considered a pioneering contribution to psychoanalytic theory and clinical practice, having been an important contributor to forensic psychiatry, especially for her work of treating and teaching staff to treat mothers who have been convicted of abusing their children.
Alicia Beatriz Iacuzzi, Full Member of APA and COWAP, received one of the honorary distinctions offered annually by the Government of Junín (a Buenos Aires province) in celebration of the International Women’s Day, for more than 25 years working inside the Penitentiary Service. In addition to countless papers Alicia edited two books of international renown: “Los enigmáticos laberintos carcelarios. Un itinerario psicoanalítico” and “Delitos contra la Integridad sexual. Articulaciones psicoanalíticas desde las sombras del entre rejas”.
Eva Rotenberg, COWAP – APA, Argentina, was assigned by FEPAL to coordinate a research group about parentalities in Latin America. It started in March 2014 and to participate in it please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. She has been working on themes such as adoption, homoparentality, and parents with pathological interdependencies that affect their offspring negatively. She has presented, along with Beatriz Agrest, papers on homoparentality in several IPA Congresses.
We also inform readers that the SPP COWAP group (Lima, Peru), held the Symposium “Cuerpo – Subjetividad y Género”, in November 2013, in partnership with academics of the Universidad Católica.
The COWAP Peru study group and Cristina Cortezzi, from COWAP SBPSP, Brazil, has been contributing with pioneering research, reflecting on maternity and creativity in incarcerated women, respectively. These researchs will be presented in the next Latin American event in BA, in September 2014.
I would also like to give a warm welcome to Silvia Jadur and Ruth Axelrod Praes, who will be continuing their work as COWAP members for Latin America, with whom I will have the immense pleasure of working closer. I hope we can maintain the enthusiasm, competency and solidarity that so characterize the COWAP Latin America group. Psychoanalysts have much to say and do with regards to the hot themes of the COWAP Group.
REVIEW OF PAST ACTIVITIES
COWAP Conference in Warsaw: “Romantics” – February 2014
Opening words by Ingrid Moeslein-Teising
I give my warmest greeting to all of you and especially to the organizers of this COWAP-Congress who did a wonderful and enthusiastic job. I send you the best greetings from Frances Thomson-Salo, COWAP Overall Chair, from Australia, who would have liked very much to be here. It is a great honour for me to speak to you here today at the opening of the COWAP-conference “Romantics” in Warsaw. And I am also delighted to take part in a congress on such an important issue.
There is a lot of “first times”:
It is in fact my first duty as European Co-Chair, following Elina Reenkola from Finland, who chaired COWAP Europe so brilliantly and thoughtfully in the last years.
It is my first time to speak here in Poland; being a German, this is not easy, due to the history of our people. Nazi Germany sent out terror, murder and destruction; bonds became dehumanized, the dimension of suffering is beyond the capacity of human imagination. The impact of this is present in many ways, also in the papers we shall hear; and it has further to be remembered, reflected and worked through – for generations.
It is the first time that Poland/Warsaw hosts a COWAP conference, though being part of the COWAP community for some years.
The Committee on Women and Psychoanalysis (COWAP) was established in 1998 as a committee within the IPA in order to provide a framework for the exploration of topics relating to women. Since 2001 it has also worked on the relations between men and women, and masculinity and femininity in our times.
The particular quality of the Committee has been the possibility to link theoretical and clinical psychoanalytical views with continuous attention to the outside world and its problems. Using a psychoanalytical framework to explore these issues is not only significant from a socio-cultural viewpoint; our experience has been that it often contributes to a revision and update of psychoanalytical concepts.
One of the Committee’s goals is to further psychoanalytical research concerning the complex relations between categories of sexuality and gender and their implications for psychoanalysis, and to study the cultural and historical influences on the construction of psychoanalytic theories related to men and women. In national and international conferences in all the IPA regions and in many publications (edited for example by Mariam Alizade (2003, 2006), Irene Matthis (2004), Giovanna Ambrosio (2005, 2009), Ingrid Moeslein-Teising and Frances Thomson Salo (2013) and Ester Palerm (2013), COWAP has contributed to these issues.
We worked on Incest, Motherhood, Transsexuality, Sexualities, Homosexualities, Femininity and Masculinity, The Female body, other issues – and now “Romantics”, a universal and thrilling subject.
In the spirit of COWAP, which had always been and will always be, as is the science of psychoanalysis in general, emancipatory, integrative, universal and at the same time highly respecting the individual, I wish the congress inspiring talks, fruitful discussions – and a good time.
Report of the COWAP Conference in Warsaw: “Romantics” – February 2014
By Ingrid Moeslein-Teising
The scientific director of this 1st COWAP conference in Warsaw/Poland, Dr. Katarzyna Walewska, COWAP representative, organized an inspiring and scientifically high level event. The speakers from Paris, Jerusalem and Warsaw gave most interesting papers which were discussed by the audience intensively and fruitfully. In all, we had insight into “Romantics”, relationships and bonds – and inspiring exchanges.
The Speakers and their papers:
Viviane Chetrit-Vatine: The frame, the analyst’s passion, and the ethical seduction
In her clinically illustrated text she explored her central proposition, which is that the analytic situation, including the setting and the analyst’s passion, is simultaneously seductive and ethical from the start. The author submits that this double asymmetry, the “ethical seduction” of the analytic situation, is located at the origin of the movement of the analytic process and its transformative capacity, i.e. at the basis of the appropriation of subjectivity. Chetrit-Vatine reviewed some of Laplanche’s theory as it relates to the asymmetry of the primal seduction, and discussed the asymmetry of the analyst’s responsibility for his/her patient (building on Levinas’ views on Ethics). Then, basing her views on the views of Kristeva and Bion, she proposed that the analyst’s passion is the affective and needed part of the ethical seduction.
The author gave a reflection on the psychical implications of Invitro-Fertilization (IVF). Her conclusions are:
“Les rêves, fantasmes et angoisses concernant les PMA sont multiples, variés et tissés avec l’histoire singulière de chacun. Nous avons donc choisi de vous présenter quelques fantasmes et un rêve concernant des femmes pratiquant la FIV. Finissant ce travail nous repérons que nous avons préféré un matériel où l’agressivité, la destructivité et le masochisme sont absents. Certes, ils existent, mais nous avons privilégié inconsciemment un partage de moments de plaisir, prises que nous avons été, sans doute dans une certaine idéalisation que l’on retrouve chez ces patientes. Mais cela convient à notre façon de concevoir Le romantisme, – titre du colloque- comme un univers sensible, rêveur tout en étant exalté et sans trop de heurt.”
Beatrice Ithier: Life and death stakes of love
Beatrice Ithier explored the destructive defense reaction of narcissism, whose impact is itself violently traumatic. It is not one of the least paradoxes that one has to confront the traumatic impact of destructive narcissism, constituted by splitting, as a defence against the trauma. This time it aims at both protagonists of the analytic couple, incurring the menace, or even the acme of annihilation. Now, it is that experience allowing not the emptiness of affectlessness but the feeling of truly shared despair, and associated to the survival of the emotional ability and the analyst’s ability to think, which will requalify everything that was felt, deprive thus the destructive narcissism’s propaganda of any foundation and justify the cure’s trajectory and finality: the freedom of the life of love, after the violence of death. The certainty of love, finally, such as it is experienced in the cure only in the form of sharing and understanding, makes one inclined to abandon that defensive structure which constituted for the patients the axis and support without which no mental survival would have been possible, for want of a mentally alive maternal and parental container.
Katarzyna Walewska: Lolita
The author worked with a wide spanned theoretical background and detailed clinical material on the understanding of the development of a patient within the therapeutic relationship.
“The latest reflections in our environment on the phenomenon of dignity and respect in our profession, and also work with patients on the eve of pension age have drawn my attention to the fact that too seldom do we recall the full profile of our patients in our thoughts. It can be the privilege of a work that spans years to know struggles and achievements in the longer perspective of life. Usually (also due to the confidentiality principle) we rarely look upon their lives as a whole, and instead we analyse its fragments for psychopathological purposes.”
Katarzyna Walewska and Chair Wojciech Hanbowski
Translator (standing), Ingrid Moeslein-Teising, translator Patricya,
Viviane Chetrit-Vatine and Chair Wojciech Hanbowski
You can also read the COWAP Newsletter on the website of the IPA
Next number will have the contribution
of the past Co-Chairs from Europe,
North America and Latin America
Elina Reenkola, Arlene Richards
and Boris Deisy.
Email address for contributions: