UPCOMING TALKS:

TWO paper presentations at the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society (APCS), 2019 Annual Conference, Rutgers University, October 2019 on the subject of DISPLACEMENT:

1. Title: Transothering: Enjoy your displacement!

Abstract:

Extrapolating from a schizoanalytic, Deleuzean framework, our role as others to patients is to join them in going beyond overlapping sensibilities and making the not yet sustainable possible. The therapist as other travels towards the inassimilable in the patient and creates a holding environment where the unfathomable can be attended to with curiosity. This pull outside is set in motion by the therapist when he or she functions not as a knowing, reflective, or dialogical other but as an Other-function, whose role it is to pull the patients’ gaze beyond the logic of the situation.

Deleuze criticizes theories that reduce the other to a particular object or to another subject. Deleuze suggests that the other become a function, a bend in the patient’s sensibilities that pulls the patient’s desires toward unimagined possibilities of life. This is a horizon of excess, discomfort, and overwhelm or, with a more hopeful perspective, a horizon of joy, excitement, and feeling alive.

 

The schizoanlytical therapist’s goal is not comfort, or discomfort, but to develop the ability of the emotionally and socially enlivening capacity of the patient to be such an Other-function to other people in their lives. The therapist acts as a guide beyond the territories of sensibility of the patient, into domains that may not be sustained by the social environment of the patient or the cultural environment in which the patient and therapist meet. It is an existential meeting but not of recognition of a pre-existing self. It is a holding, but not a containment, of difference and not of self or same.

In rhizomatic form the presentation will weave the schizoanalytic notion of the Other-function with the thousand, tiny, magic moments in therapy in which the therapist and patient meet in the terrain of differences.

2. Title: Displacement in Itself

Abstract:

'Who are you?' said the Caterpillar.

"Alice replied, rather shyly, 'I — I hardly know, sir, just at present — at least I know who I WAS when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since then.'

'What do you mean by that?' said the Caterpillar sternly. 'Explain yourself!'

'I can't explain myself, I'm afraid, sir' said Alice, 'because I'm not myself, you see.'

How can we help another person go somewhere new? If we beckon they follow us they will repeat our same or some representation of their same or some intersubjective dialectic of these sames. If we frustrate their journey to an other's same they will collapse into subjectivity and eternally repeat the same. We both have to become displaced, but not displaced from any person/place, but displaced in displacement itself. This is the mind-boggling schizoanalytic solution: displacement in itself - not in semantics or meaning (no explanation possible), but in material time and place (the eternally returning non-place of the durational present). The task of the displaced then becomes not how to be me/them in a new place nor what to transfer (Who/where are we going to transfer or countertransfer to if we aren't coming from anywhere and we don't know who we've been?) but how to (continue) to be different in the sameness of another place.

 

In this paper I would like to explore what Delueze describes as the "the [therapeutic/trasnformative] power of beginning and beginning again" in my experience working with people permanently living in “vacationland” (Maine) as well as through Philip K. Dick's recurring struggles to survive displacements in The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch.

ANOTHER PAPER at the Psychology and the Other annual conference, Boston, October 2019

Titile: Deleuze as Charon - How to Traverse the Gates of the Other into the New
Abstract:

Extrapolating from a schiaoanalytic, Deleuzean framework, our role as others to patients is to join them in going beyond overlapping sensibilities and making the not yet sustainable possible. This is can be our response and responsibility towards the trauma that results from inassimilable experiences. The therapist as other travels towards the inassimilable in the patient and creates a holding environment where the unfathomable can be attended to with curiosity. This pull outside is set in motion by the therapist when he or she functions not as a knowing, reflective, or dialogical other but as an Other-function, whose role it is to pull the patients’ gaze beyond the logic of the situation. Deleuze criticizes theories that reduce the other to a particular object or to another subject. Deleuze suggests that the other become a function, a bend in the patient’s sensibilities that pulls the patient’s desires toward unimagined possibilities of life. This is a horizon of excess, discomfort, and overwhelm or, with a more hopeful perspective, a horizon of joy, excitement, and feeling alive. Contemporary psychoanalysis tends to treat the other as a mirroring, dialectic, or metaphoric relationship of self and other-self - all of which pre-suppose the ideal parameters of the patient's self, rather than allowing the patient to expand beyond their boundaries and beyond the comfort of the therapist. The schizoanlytical therapist’s goal is not comfort, or discomfort, but to develop the ability of the emotionally and socially enlivening capacity of the patient to be such an Other-function to other people in their lives. The therapist acts as a guide beyond the territories of sensibility of the patient, into domains that may not be sustained by the social environment of the patient or the cultural environment in which the patient and therapist meet. It is an existential meeting but not of recognition of a pre-existing self. It is a holding, but not a containment, of difference and not of self or same. It is a taking of turns to ferry into the unknown.

This paper is part of a greater project of applying Deleuze's theoretical critique of psychoanalysis to contemporary therapy praxis - focusing here on Deleuze's (1969/1990) notion of the Other-function and the therapist as an Other-function. In rhizomatic form the presentation will weave the schizoanalytic notion of the Other-function with the thousand, tiny, magic moments in therapy in which the therapist and patient meet in the terrain of differences.