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Psychoanalysis On and Off the Couch

Dec 12, 2021

"In conflict, especially in war when we have massive conflict, each side believes that truth and right are on their side. It is very difficult to reason with each side because each side believes that right and truth are on their side.” 


Episode Description: We begin by describing the current widespread craving for social homogeneity - the 'other' is deemed not only as foreign but foul and dangerous. Violence towards those who are different is tolerated if not valorized as purifying. Psychoanalysis has something to offer those who shout in order to not hear themselves. In addition to speaking with colleagues, we suggest the value of applying aspects of our work 'off the couch' to reach those who don't seek listening but can benefit from it. Ronald's work in Balint groups provides a model of outreach that perhaps can apply to the social/political arena as well. We conclude with welcoming ideas from listeners about how best to apply our skills to the wider world in which we live. 


Our Guest: Ronald Doctor, MD is a Consultant Psychiatrist in Medical Psychotherapy and Forensic Psychotherapy, West London NHS Trust, and a Psychoanalyst in private practice. He is a Fellow of the British Psychoanalytical Society, Senior Member of the British Psychotherapy Foundation, Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Chair of the IPA Committee of Psychoanalysis and Law, and Board member of the International Association for Forensic Psychotherapy. He has edited two books: Dangerous Patients: A Psychodynamic Approach to Risk Assessment and Management (2003) and Murder; a Psychotherapeutic Investigation (2008) and published History, murder and the fear of death, International Journal of Applied Psychoanalytical Studies (2015) 12.2 152-160.