The Guildford Centre for Psychotherapy
Psychotherapy services in Guildford, Surrey and surrounding areas
Psychotherapy services in Guildford, Surrey areas

Public Lectures for 2018

The GCP holds a series of public lectures each spring which are open to the public as well as psychotherapists and health professionals. The lectures are held at the United Reform Church, 83 Portsmouth Rd, Guildford, Surrey GU2 4BS  (Directions & map). Lectures take place 2.00 – 4.30 pm and will include tea.

The theme for the two lectures in 2018 was 'Therapeutic Work with Young people in a Changing world'. See below for details of the lectures.

Saturday 17 March 2018

    “Nowhere phenomena".  Reflections on identification, de-identification and re-identification

    Speaker: Alessandra Cavalli

    In this talk I will address a state of mind that I have been encountering in the consulting room in different formats.

    I will call this state of mind “No-whereness”. To elucidate it, I will bring three vignettes of clinical material from my work with a young adult patient. In particular these vignettes relate to a state of mind in which the patient has no relation to her own body and mind, and feels an alien, out of time and space.

    Departing from the clinical vignettes I will venture into offering a reading of these phenomena, making some hypothesis on its genesis. I will talk about identification and de-identification.

    I will then briefly discuss three adolescents’ cases: one of eating disorders, one of transgender issues and one of fundamentalism. I will show how these three adolescents have resolved the “nowheness state of mind” by appropriating a new identity, a sort of re-identification, which seems a good solution to the terrible and unbearable pain that a life in “nowhereness” had on offer.

    I will discuss the consequences of such a solution for individuation and mental health.

    Alessandra Cavalli Ph.D. (UK), child and an adult analyst in private practice, is a training and supervising analyst at the Society of Analytical Psychology (SAP).  She supervises therapeutic work with children in care in Mexico (Juconi) since 2007. In 2013 she started a training course in child psychotherapy in Moscow with a group of Jungian and non Jungian child psychotherapists from London. She is the organising tutor and convener of the Transitions: Adolescence into Adulthood working with 18-25 year olds, an Advanced CPD course at the SAP.  She has published extensively in the Journal of Analytical Psychology, and is co-editor with Lucinda Hawkins and Martha Stevns of the book “Transformation”, published by Karnac in 2013.

Saturday 17 February 2018

    Melancholia and Mourning in Childhood and Adolescence: Some reflections on the role of the internal object

    Speaker: Anne Alvarez

    “I shall discuss two very different conditions which interfere with a person’s capacity to mourn: protesting too much and protesting too little. In the years since 1917,  five particular states of mind, all of which appear in and are foreshadowed in Freud’s description of melancholia, have been developed further by subsequent theorists. The first feature is the nature of the paranoid state of mind, (Klein, 1935) and the second is the state of manic contempt (Klein,1935;Segal,1964) for devalued objects. The third, developed greatly by Rosenfeld, Kernberg, and Kohut is narcissism. Freud had made note of a narcissistic preoccupation and pointed out that the real mourner evokes our sympathy in a far more powerful way: on the other hand, a psychoanalysis which attends carefully to the nature of the internal object’s possible collusive role in all this might lead us to be a bit less impatient.

    “I shall concentrate on a fourth and a fifth feature. The fourth arises from a concept of Betty Joseph, (1982) the process of addictive and perverse chuntering, which under different names was noted by both by Freud and also by Abraham as a characteristic of the state of mind of the melancholic. The fifth feature arises from our greater understanding nowadays of the preconditions for the work of mourning, also first described to us by Freud. This feature, which has to do with despair, and with those states which go beyond despair into apathy, concerns the question of the level of development of early introjections and internalisations of, and identifications with, a good object, and the part early development plays in the capacity to mourn. Here I shall also say a word about unvalued, as opposed to valued objects. The findings from infant observation and infant research and also those from the clinical treatment by child psychotherapists of extremely deprived and traumatized children, support the work of Klein, Bion and the developmentalists. All of the newer developments in thinking are underpinned, I suggest, by the greater attention to Object-Relations theory and by the growing understanding of the nature of the difference between pathological and benign projective processes, and pathological and benign introjective ones.”

    Anne’s Lecture was based largely on the first chapter of the book Enduring Loss, Mourning, Depression and Narcissism Throughout the Life Cycle
    Ed.  Eileen McGinley and Arturo Varchevker, Published Karnac 2010.

    Chapter 1 by Anne Alvarez is entitled:  “Melancholia and Mourning in Childhood and Adolescence. Some reflections on the role of the Internal Object”.

    Available from Amazon here >>

    Anne Alvarez, PhD, M.A.C.P is a Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist (and retired Co-Convener of the Autism Service, Child and Family Dep't. Tavistock Clinic, London, where she still teaches.). She is author of “Live Company: Psychotherapy with Autistic, Borderline,  Deprived and Abused Children” and has edited with Susan Reid, “Autism and Personality: Findings from the Tavistock Autism Workshop”. A book in her honour, edited by Judith Edwards, entitled “Being Alive: Building on the Work of Anne Alvarez” was published in 2002. She was Visiting Professor at the San Francisco Psychoanalytic Society in November 2005 and is an Honorary Member of the Psychoanalytic Centre of California. Her latest book, “The Thinking Heart: Three Levels of Psychoanalytic Therapy with Disturbed Children” was published in April 2012 by Routledge.