Thursday, 16 July 2009

Lecture Announcement

Curator's Talk

Resonance: Overlay: Interweave
What has Bracha Ettinger created in the Freudian Space of Memory and Migration?

2.30-4.00pm Sunday 26 July
(No charge or booking)

Why install art in the Freud Museum already so rich with artefacts and images?

Why place the works of this artist in this museum of psychoanalysis?

Is it an exhibition in the museum, or an installation that is in dialogue with the memories held in this space?

This talk will explore what the painter Bracha Ettinger has 'done' by creating a unique, multi-faceted installation which is much more than a mere exhibition in these spaces. It will ask: what is brought to light in this encounter between the varied works of a contemporary artist who is herself so deeply engaged with psychoanalysis and the freighted spaces the last home and archives of the exiles a father and his daughter, one a collector of antiquities, the other a weaver.

Bracha Ettinger has created an installation that weaves many strings between her own history and memory and the world from which the Freuds fled. It treats of European pasts and present struggles for futures despite the freight of traumatic memory. Through allusion and translation into artworking, Ettinger's work explores aspects of Freud's own practice and theory especially in relation to the feminine and the obscured mother.

Another contribution to the tradition of the many extraordinary exhibitions by contemporary artists at the museum, Bracha Ettinger's work, however, holds a special place because this was an installation waiting to happen: in both her own artwork between aesthetics, psychoanalysis and history and in the museum's own relations through images and things, objects and books to history, memory and above all, the family.

The curator, distinguished art historian and cultural theorist, Griselda Pollock will present a double reading of the exhibition as a conversation between both Anna and Sigmund Freud and Bracha Ettinger's work, linking Freud's last great work Moses and Monothesism (1939) and his own diary (1929-39) with Ettinger's notebooks and those of her father (1942-45), Freud's objects and her mother's spoon, the Freudian family albums and hers, Freud's texts and hers. As the exhibition closes, this is a last chance of engage with the materiality, affects and insights created in the installation as poetic event.

Freud Museum
20 Maresfield Gardens, London NW3 5SX
Tel: +44 (0)20 7435 2002

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Conference Announcement: Psychoanalysis, Money and the Economy

Psychoanalysis, Money and the Economy
a conference convened for the London Freud Museum
by Prof. David Bennett and Dr. Ivan Ward
2nd-4th July, 2010.

Freud once warned his fellow analysts that there were two subjects that “civilized people” will always treat “with the same inconsistency, prudishness and hypocrisy” and about which psychoanalysts must insist on speaking with “the same matter-of-fact frankness”, namely: “money matters” and “sexual matters”. Yet the psychoanalytic profession has often followed Freud’s own example in decoding “money matters” as symbolic displacements of “sexual matters”. What would speaking “frankly” about money and psychoanalysis entail? This conference, and the volume of essays that will result from it, aims to explore all aspects of the nexus between psychoanalysis, money and the economy, including, but not limited to:

• psychoanalytic interpretations of economic behaviour, including the psychology of financial risk-taking and gambling, stock-market booms and busts, the ‘highs’ and ‘depressions’ of economies, financial traders and investors

• the roles of money and economic models in psychoanalytic theory and case histories

• the history of attempts to fuse psychoanalytic with economic explanations of social and cultural processes, as in the Freudo-Marxist tradition and its critiques of liberal economics’ theories of ‘Homo oeconomicus’

• the roles of money in the analyst–analysand relationship, or the psychotherapeutic encounter.

• psychoanalytic interpretations of monetary transactions and relationships in fantasy, fiction and film

• histories, theories and practices of libidinal economy, including sexual-economic revolutionary theories and movements

• how psychoanalysis as a profession and set of practices and theories is articulated wth specific economic conditions and trends, regionally, nationally and/or internationally

The conference will include a number of invited keynote speakers but there will also be opportunities for unsolicited papers to be presented. Proposals for 20-minute papers on any aspect of the conference theme will be welcome; they should include an explanatory title and a 600-word abstract, and should be sent simultaneously to David Bennett and Ivan Ward

A Vision of Students Today

This has just been posted on ScHARR's own, rather excellent, Library blog, so many thanks to the team there for their hard-work (and for letting me nick their cool link).

I'm not sure that it is a terrific ad for distance learning, but it raises some very interesting questions about the process of learning, what learning means, and how we achieve it. If nothing else it makes clear that we need to move beyond the nineteenth century conception of learning in higher education, which unfortunately still too often dominates universities (which are, fundamentally, I always like to remind people, medieval institutions re-designed in the shape of nineteenth century prisons, run today by CEOs as though they were international corporations. And we wonder why sometimes they don't work as we'd like them to...?)

And this video certainly doesn't address psychoanalysis or psychotherapy explicitly -- except to imply, perhaps, that there is a whole future generation of alienated, highly-educated, square-eyed, tech-governed clients just waiting outside our consulting rooms.

So, then, for your consideration: