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Reflections on IARPP Conference 2013 in Santiago, Chile


Susanna Federici-Nebbiosi – President IARPP (Italy)
Cynthia Chalker (USA)
Alejandra Plaza Espinosa  and Anne Marie Maxwell (Mexico)
María Alejandra Rey (Argentina)
Carlos Nemirovsky (Argentina)
Iglis Nancy Rodrigo (Argentina)
John A. Sloane  (Canada)

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susiarticleMeeting in person allows us a sense of lively community, a community in development. Meeting in person offers us the opportunity of knowing each other better and to exchange our ideas and experiences.  At the end of the Santiago conference I felt so proud and astonished considering how far we have come in the process to grow as an international community.

This conference created a context for development at many levels:the discussion of  theoretical comparison, the sharing of clinical practices, and the sharing of  aesthetic experiences of art, photography, music, and cinema.

All this has been exciting, thought provoking and rich.
But, I also had a feeling of even “something more,”  as Daniel Stern would have said. And that is:   a sort of ongoing witnessing process for the painful experiences that many of our Chilean colleagues went through both in their professional and personal lives.

The experience of having shared such a deep and collective process is the most valuable memory to bring back home.

A special thanks to all the IARPP members who participated in this conference.

Very warmly,
Susi Federici-Nebbiosi
President, IARPP

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Cynthia Chalker
(USA)

CChalkerwwwI attended the IARPP International Conference 2013 held in Santiago, Chile as a candidate chosen to present on a panel: Working Interculturally: Unique Challenges And Possibilities for Intercultural Treatment.

A third year Candidate at Manhattan Institute of Psychoanalysis and part-time therapist from New York City, I arrived at the IARPP International Conference having attended only one other major psychoanalytic conference earlier in the spring, where I knew no one. I knew the Candidates Committee members only, through email exchanges.

What a wonderful introduction to the IARPP organization! Thursday evening, after attending workshops and the opening plenary, IARPP Board and members warmly welcomed the candidates with a reception and art exhibition of works by two artists in the IARPP community.

Prior to our Friday session, my fellow panelists and I were treated to lunch at a local restaurant with the Candidates Committee and the President of IARPP.  The lunch was an excellent opportunity to build camaraderie as we transitioned to the panel presentations.

I left Santiago with a full heart. Every day of the conference I met new colleagues, learned new things, laughed, cried and enjoyed many meals. Most of all, I felt welcomed into a vibrant community of practitioners.

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Anita Maxwell, co-Chair, Juan Francisco Jordan, Alejandra Plaza Espinosa, co-Chair

Alejandra Plaza Espinosa  and Anne Marie Maxwell (Mexico)

Anne Marie Maxwell, co-Chair, Juan Francisco Jordan, Alejandra Plaza Espinosa, co-Chair

Anne Marie Maxwell, co-Chair Mexico Chapter, Juan Francisco Jordan, Alejandra Plaza Espinosa, co-Chair Mexico Chapter,

Mexico Chapter

The Santiago Conference was a very special event for many different reasons. It was truly a meeting of traditions, because apart from having a wide array of different psychoanalytical perspectives represented, it was possible to reflect about the deep mixture of cultures which shape Latin America.

In a similar way, Relational Psychoanalysis is the result of a combination of factors: theoretical advances in different areas of knowledge, including; cultural topics, infant research, neuroscience, and new clinical and technical advances. Within the cultural topics, it was very interesting to include the analysis of different aspects of sociopolitical issues in modern Chile.

The Conference was embedded in a very warm atmosphere, with an open mind to expose, listen and discuss different ideas with profound respect. This environment is coherent with the relational spirit. Important point of integration was the possibility to listen the papers in Spanish and English, so the local people could be part of the event.

As people who speak Spanish, we had more opportunity to participate in the discussions and presenting our ideas.

Particularly, as the Mexican Group, we were thrilled to receive the notice of acceptance of the IARPP Mexican Chapter. So, we were very happy and with a lot of enthusiasm and energy to strengthen the Relational point of view in Mexico.

It was a great experience, very enriching, that gave us the opportunity to reflect the theoretical and clinical issues of our practice.

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Carlos Nemirovsky (Argentina)
cnemirovsky22@gmail.com

(para Español)
Steven Knoblauch, Donnel Stern, Carlos Nemirovsky, Alejandro Ávila Espada

Steven Knoblauch, Donnel Stern, Carlos Nemirovsky, Alejandro Ávila Espada

I am proud and content to have participated in the marvelous IARPP Conference in Chile, especially the shared panel with Don and Steve.  There we were able to plant a central question that we all face in our practices: Are drive theory and intersubjectivity theory compatible?   The experience was passionate and very different from other meetings: it had space, time, and over all respect for argument of diverse opinions.  The occasional differences were very interesting in this sense as the divergent formulations followed the different geographic origins.

One important question we have in the future, as I challenged at the conference,  is to achieve the interest of colleagues that have an affinity of thought with the intersubjective authors (those colleagues that  are acquainted with the work of Ferenczi, Fairbairn, Winnicott, and Kohut) but find difficulties — probably a certain mistrust — approaching the proposals we have made at the Relational Conference with relational thought.  In Argentina even though we have not been able to convene a sufficient number of colleagues to constitute an IARPP chapter,  we are working on it.

I am happy that the opinion of Latin American colleagues has been sought and I hope that these international exchanges continue.

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Carlos Nemirovsky (Argentina)
cnemirovsky22@gmail.com

(for English)

CNemirovskyWWWEstoy orgulloso y contento de haber participado en el maravilloso congreso IARPP en Chile, especialmente del panel compartido con Don y Steve. Allí pudimos plantear una cuestión central que todos los días enfrentamos en nuestra práctica: ¿Son compatibles la teoría pulsional y la intersubjetividad? La experiencia fue apasionante, y muy diferente a otros encuentros: había espacio, tiempo y sobre todo respeto para discutir diversas opiniones. Fueron muy interesantes en este sentido las divergencias ocasionadas por las diversas formaciones según los diferentes orígenes geográficos.

Una importante cuestión que tenemos en el futuro como desafío es lograr el interés de colegas que tienen un pensamiento afín a los autores intersubjetivos (que conocen la obra de Ferenczi, Fairbairn, Winnicott o Kohut) pero que encuentran dificultades –probablemente cierta desconfianza- para acercarse a los planteos que hemos hecho en el Congreso relacionados con el pensamiento relacional. En Argentina aún no hemos podido reunir un número suficiente de colegar para constituir un filial de IARPP pero estamos trabajando para ello.

Me alegra que soliciten la opinión de los colegas latinoamericanos y espero que prosigan los intercambios.

(Carlos Nemirovsky paper presented at Santiago 2014)

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MAReywwwMaría Alejandra Rey (Argentina)
malejarey@yahoo.com.ar

MALejandraReyrflctnsSantiagowww(para español)

Attached are  photographs from The IARPP Conference in Chile 2013.  They are of a panel in which I shared clinical experiences together with Irene Dukes of Chile (in the center) and Frederico Pereira of Portugal (on the left).  It was an extremely enriching experience at the highest level of emotional engagement with the attendees and the mutual respect  for differences.  In the other other photograph, María Eugenia Boetch  is seen announcing one of the artistic events that we shared.

María Alejandra Rey (Argentina)

MALejandraReyrflctnsSantiago2www(for English)

Adjunto fotografías del Encuentro IARPP Chile 2013, de un panel en el que compartí experiencias clínicas junto a Irene Dukes de Chile (en el centro) y Frederico Pereira de Portugal (a la izquierda). Fue una experiencia sumament enriquecedora, por el alto nivel de compromiso emocional de los asistentes y el respeto mutuo por las diferencias. En la otra fotografía se ve a María Eugenia Boetch anunciando uno de los eventos artísticos que compartimos.

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Iglis Nancy Rodrigo (Argentina) en español
iglis.rodrigo@gmail.com

INRodrigowww(for English)

Realmente fue una gran alegría y complacencia poder asistir al Congreso de la IARPP, esta vez de manera doble al ser en castellano y en un país hermano. Esto me permitió elegir la temática y/o ponencias a las que quería asistir, aunque generalmente toda elección se torna difícil más aún cuando hay tantos temas de interés en los que se pueden encontrar respuestas y/o coincidencias referidas al trabajo diario en la clínica. Espero que esta modalidad se mantenga porque es mi deseo seguir participando de los Congresos.

Considero que el psicoanálisis relacional aún no ha alcanzado su máximo desarrollo en latinoamérica, a raíz de no estar lo suficientemente difundido. Los eventos científicos como los Congresos contribuyen a difundir y compartir los conocimientos de forma masiva –verdad ampliamente conocida pero no por ello menos cierta-.

En cuanto a las ponencias: conocer la riqueza de los casos que nos permitieron continuar debatiendo aún después del Congreso; también corroborar que en trabajos estadísticos se mantenía la mirada relacional, el enfoque analítico para comprender los fenómenos.

Por último deseo plantear una inquietud en cuanto a la posibilidad de acceso a diversos trabajos a modo de consulta posterior al Congreso. Entiendo que la dificultad mayor radica en la necesidad de preservar la seguridad de la autoría, pero tal vez se pueda encontrar un modo de resolver esto.

Un abrazo fraterno para ustedes y espero que podamos conversar en el próximo congreso

Iglis Nancy Rodrigo (Argentina)
(para Español)

Really it was a great happiness and satisfying exprience to be able to attend the the Congress of  IARPP, this time in a double way being a Castilian and in a brother country. This allowed me to choose the subject matter and/or presentations which I wanted to attend. However generally any choice becomes difficult even more when there are so many topics of interest in which one can find answers and/or coincidences that reference the daily work in the clinical setting. I hope that this modality is kept because it is my desire to continue taking part in the Congress.

I think that  Relational Psychoanalysis still has not reached its maximum development in Latin America, because it has not been sufficiently disseminated. The scientific events like the Congresses help to spread and share the knowledge in a  massive form.

As for the presentations: They helped us to know the wealth of the cases that then allowed us to continue debating still after the Congress; also they allowed us to corroborate in statistical works, the relational point of view, the analytical focus in order to understand the phenomena.

Finally I want to raise a concern as to the possibility of access to diverse works like consultation after the Congress. I understand that the major difficulty is rooted in the need to preserve the safety of the authorship, but maybe a way could be found to solve this.

A fraternal embrace to you and I hope that we can converse at the next congress.

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John A. Sloane  (Canada)

john.sloane@rogers.com

JSloaneWhat a conference! I have always been impressed by the quality of presentations and discussions at the IARPP conferences, and by the spirit of openness to different personal and theoretical points of view – but this one had a whole new dimension, at least for me. The fact that it was hosted by those who have recently been through such unspeakable historical trauma was both deeply disturbing and inspiring! As a whole, it was a gathering that provided a remarkable holding environment or “Third” for the formulation and transformation of what one person called the “social unconscious”, co-creating a more benign social and professional conscience, gradually emerging into collective consciousness. It seems to me that what is evolving is a genuinely caring, truly human capacity to hear and bear the trans-generational pain and passion of both victims and perpetrators, bystanders and witnesses – as well as that of fallible, wounded, would-be healers who are willing to come face-to-face with what we do to one another. Amazing!

There was a Spirit in the air, not only at the conference, itself, but in the testimony provided by the Museum of Memory and Human Rights, and by the excellent analytic work we glimpsed taking place all around the world in the aftermath of ‘humanicide’. As one person put it after a deeply moving panel on “dissociation, enactment and the healing of collective trauma”, “we were in the presence of the Holy”!

Whether we think of it as human resilience or divine resurrection, I agree.

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