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Costumes of Nudity

Faux Nudes in Fin de Siècle Photography

MARY BERGSTEIN, Presenter

SUSIE ORBACH, Discussant

ADELE TUTTER, Moderator

Monday, April 3, 2023, 7:30 pm

Heyman Center for the Humanities

Room B-201, Columbia University

For virtual participation, preregister here.

Visit:

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Weight Watchers wins when our diets fail – it won’t change society’s broken thinking around food

Susie Orbach

Guardian – March 16th 2023

‘I’d argue that Weight Watchers is not so much in the weight-loss business. It is in the money-churning business.’ Photograph: Brendan McDermid/Reuters
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2023/mar/16/weight-watchers-diet-society-food-industry-customer?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other
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‘Body uniformity is out of control – there’s no right way to have labia!’

Susie Orbach interviewed by Hephzibah Anderson

The psychotherapist on body hatred, what’s changed since she wrote Fat Is a Feminist Issue – and the smell of her clients

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2023/apr/23/susie-orbach-fat-is-a-feminist-issue-new-edition-interview-bodies-diet?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other
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Professor Kahr’s Latest Book on Media Psychoanalysis.

On 31st May, 2023, Professor Brett Kahr’s seventeenth book will be published, entitled 

How to Be Intimate with 15,000,000 Strangers: Musings on Media Psychoanalysis.

This book describes the relationship between psychoanalysis and the media, and chronicles Kahr’s own work as a mental health broadcaster, having worked as Resident Psychotherapist at the British Broadcasting Corporation and having appeared on over 1,000 radio and television programmes over the years.

Publisher’s Website.

Amazon Website.

Professor Brett Kahr

This new publication appears in the “Psychoanalysis and Popular Culture Series”, edited by Professor Caroline Bainbridge and Professor Candida Yates, founder of “Media and the Inner World” – a project commissioned by the Arts Research Council, which has integrated mental health workers with cultural practitioners and academics.

Endorsements.

“No one has done more to lead psychoanalysis out of the closet and into the hearts and minds of 15,000,000 – and counting – than the brilliant Professor Brett Kahr.  Readers are in for a treat, because he does so in beautiful, accessible language, never compromising theoretical or ethical rigour; a rare, impressive feat.”

Dr. Steven Kuchuck, Immediate Past President of the International Association for Relational Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy, and Faculty, New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis and the National Institute for the Psychotherapies. 

*

“This is a rare and special treat … a gem of a read.  Professor Brett Kahr combines his scintillating Freudian intellect with his forty years of experience, in radio and television, to put media itself on the couch, revealing a whole gamut of captivating insights.  An absolute delight!”

Dan Chambers, Creative Director and Co-Founder of Blink Films (one of Real Screen 100’s Top 5 Non-Scripted U.K. Indies) and former Director of Programmes, Channel Five Television.

*

“Brett Kahr invites us on his extraordinary journey of popularising psychoanalysis through the media.  Writing with clarity, humour, empathy, and great warmth about his long experience as the United Kingdom’s foremost media psychoanalyst, he details his adventures on television and radio as well as sharing wide-ranging reflections about celebrity culture and the history of mediated psychoanalysis.  Kahr thereby contributes enormously to dissolving the secretive aura of psychoanalysis while being deeply respectful to the boundaries of a private profession.  At a time where psychoanalysis through popular culture is more needed than ever, this book is essential reading for clinicians, academics, and anyone concerned about the shared future of humanity and psychoanalysis.”

Professor Jacob Johanssen, Associate Professor in Communications, St. Mary’s University, and author of Fantasy, Online Misogyny and the Manosphere and co-author of Media and Psychoanalysis:  A Critical Introduction.

*

How to Be Intimate with 15,000,000 Strangers:  Musings on Media Psychoanalysis makes a unique contribution to clinical media psychology.  Professor Brett Kahr has devoted his career to the dissemination of complex psychoanalytical concepts among the general public.  In this book, he uses creative and courageous means to demystify, destigmatise, and demarginalize psychoanalysis through his collaborations with the media.  Entertaining and educational, this work inspires psychotherapists and psychoanalysts to venture beyond the consulting room and to provide public outreach.”

Professor Caroline Sehon, Director of the International Psychotherapy Institute, and Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Georgetown University Medical School, as well as Executive Committee Board Member and Chair of the Committee on Community Psychoanalysis of the American Psychoanalytic Association.

*

“As Radio 2’s Resident Psychotherapist, Professor Brett Kahr was one of the first brave pioneers who championed mental health on the B.B.C.’s airways, thus fulfilling the B.B.C.’s remit to “inform, educate and entertain”.  His insights have paved the way to destigmatising mental illness and have forever changed the landscape of media psychoanalysis.”

Jenny Slater, Music Project Manager, European Broadcasting Union, B.B.C. Radio.

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FORTHCOMING BOOK BY PROFESSOR KAHR.

FORTHCOMING BOOK BY PROFESSOR KAHR.

Visit: https://firingthemind.com/product/9781800131903/ for more information

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Britain’s obesity strategy ignores the science: dieting doesn’t work – Susie Orbach

Rather than counting calories and stigmatising fat, we need to take on the food and weight-loss industriesYoung girl in kitchen with a bowl of spinach

‘Children’s early relationships with eating are integral to the patterns they later develop as adults.’ 

Photograph: Andrew Olney/Getty Images

Published onTue 28 Jul 2020 10.00 BST The Guardian

Being overweight has never just been about the amount of calories you consume. The government’s new obesity strategy, which includes mandating calorie displays on menus, banning junk food adverts before 9pm, offering Weight Watchers discounts and ending discount deals on “unhealthy” foods, reflects the widely held misconception that weight loss can be achieved by restricting calories and fat. The reality is that tackling obesity requires a far greater rethink of our fraught relationship with eating – starting with the food and diet industry.

From keto to paleo, superfoods to juice cleanses, clean eating and raw diets, we’ve been confronted with a dizzying array of dieting advice in recent years. But, as with the widespread belief that calorie intake is directly proportional to weight gain, most of this information is completely useless. Indeed, the rate of recidivism with all diets is an estimated 97%. That figure should give the government pause for thought. Of every 100 people who diet, an estimated three will manage to keep the weight off in the long term. Why is the government ignoring this evidence?

Rather than mandating calorie labelling, the government should be worrying about what goes into many processed foods and ready meals. Mucking around with food has unintended consequences. The extra ingredients and chemical enhancers that make food tastier have none of the nutritional value found in normal food groups. These additives are directed at “bliss points”, the manufacturing name given to the amount of sugar, salt and fat that optimises flavour in a product. Nutrient low and additive rich, these foods encourage us to override our natural sense of when we’re full, manipulating our appetites and leading us to eat more.Advertisement

In the 1980s, when low-fat products and desserts flavoured with sugarand artificial sweeteners first entered the market, they were deemed healthier than their full-fat alternatives. But what first appeared helpful caused confusion: evidence showed that the body didn’t metabolise these products in the same way as full-fat alternatives, and people who consumed low-fat foods were likely to replace the lost fat with calories from carbohydrates.

People trying to lose weight for aesthetic reasons found that by restricting their calorie consumption with low-fat alternatives, they were interfering with their body’s delicate “set point”, the weight range that our bodies are genetically and biologically predisposed to maintain. And some have found that continual calorie restriction can paradoxically lower your metabolic “thermostat”, meaning your body works harder to decrease the rate at which you burn calories. Restricting the number of calories you consume often means the pounds go on, not off.

Preventing obesity and encouraging the population to be healthier will require far more than banning two-for-one offers on sugary snacks or junk food adverts before 9pm. We’ll need to completely overhaul our troubled relationship with eating. Talk of “good” and “bad” foods has contributed to an obsession with size and weight loss. The food industry has stoked these anxieties, stigmatising fat and calories while selling us low-fat alternatives without the same nutritional value. It’s no surprise that disordered eating is rampant. What’s needed is a more holistic approach to food, where people are encouraged to eat food groups in balance and nutritious food is available to everyone.‘Eat Out to Help Out’ risks undermining obesity campaign, say expertsRead more

Food is the medium of our first relationship. As we are welcomed into the world, we are held, cuddled and fed. We first associate food with safety and love. Babies turn their heads away from their mother’s breast or bottle when they’ve consumed enough. They show when they’re next hungry. With luck, their physical prompts are met with food, creating the feeling of bodily security. Children’s early relationships with eating are integral to the patterns they later develop as adults. At school, talk of food and fat can imbibe confusion about eating, while stories of nurseries banning birthday cakes sends a message that some foods are dangerous.Now, the pressures of social media, with children posing for selfies and plastic surgery apps targeting young girls, have amplified anxieties about size and appearance and distorted people’s eating patterns and relationships with food.

We should be encouraging people to be healthy and fit. But a better and more viable place to start would be to help people understand what food means to them, both individually and culturally. We need messaging that encourages people to eat when they are hungry and to savour every mouthful so they can stop when they are full. We should stop stigmatising fat and calories, and encourage people to recognise that their body has a naturally predisposed weight. Understanding what we’re wanting and feeling if we’re drawn to eating when we aren’t physically hungry is the key to eating happily. We know this approach works considerably better and more permanently than dieting, enabling people to stay healthier over the longer term, but it gets little airtime compared with dieting fixes.

Eating sustainably for our bodies, our emotions and the planet requires serious political will. It begins by taking on the huge food and diet industries and curbing the production of foods that that are designed to override our body’s needs and signals. Only then can our relationship with food become a healthier one.

  • Susie Orbach is a psychotherapist, psychoanalyst, writer and social critic
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Book Review by Susie Orbach

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2021/aug/11/something-out-of-place-by-eimear-mcbride-review-a-satisfying-feminist-polemic?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

Something Out of Place by Eimear McBride review – a satisfying feminist polemics

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Susie Orbach

Five Book recommendations on Shepherd.com by Susie Orbach

Contemporary Memoirs by Women

The best contemporary memoirs by women

Susie Orbach Author Of Bodies By Susie Orbach

Who am I?

Memoirs have crept up on me as favorites. I could list many more. Please let me! As a psychoanalyst, I listen to the pains and struggles of individuals trying to become more at ease with themselves. They engage with their demons and try to make sense of how to manage the way their personal history has created their worldview and how to expand it enough to enter a present. Memoirs are another way of addressing such struggles. They have an elegance and a universality that emerges out of their individual stories. We learn about the other and we learn about ourselves.


I wrote…

Bodies

By Susie Orbach

Bodies

What is my book about?

Susie looks at how we get the bodies we have. We think of them as predetermined and unfolding but in reality our bodies reflect the familial, cultural, geographic, raced, gendered, and classed positions we are born into and develop from.

Bodies looks at cultural differences – that the Kaypoo bite where we would kiss for instance; at the importance of touch; at the earliest body to body relationship between infant and carers; at the meaning of clothing, of body shape. The democratisation of beauty and the selling of the western and body as a way to enter modernity produce huge profits for the beauty, fashion, food, and diet industries which Bodies discusses. Bodies looks at all the themes through her clinical work with individuals as a psychoanalyst.

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The Books I Picked & Why

Every Secret Thing: My Family, My Country

By Gillian Slovo

Every Secret Thing: My Family, My Country

Why this book?

Gillian Slovo’s mother was assassinated by the South African Govt. Her father was considered public enemy #1. She reflects on being a child of revolutionaries, leaving her home suddenly and arriving in England on her 12th birthday and seeing snow for the first time. This is a book of making sense, acceptance, confrontation, and truths, Beautifully written, compelling, and gives us a way into a world very few people will experience and yet will want to know about.


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Everyday Madness: On Grief, Anger, Loss and Love

By Lisa Appignanesi

Everyday Madness: On Grief, Anger, Loss and Love

Why this book?

Lisa’s husband dies as he is being treated for cancer. She writes about the first year after in which grief, madness, confusion, isolation, and fury coincide with Britain’s beginning Brexit madness. Nothing can be made sense of and yet we need words to express what’s happening. And then words provide for consoling and managing.


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Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?

By Jeanette Winterson

Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?

Why this book?

Jeanette returns to her life story twenty-five years after Oranges are the Only Fruit. She escapes the religious cult she grew up in and finds solace and excitement in sexuality and learning. And she takes us on the journey of discovering her routes, her biological mother, her acceptance of Mrs. Winterson, and her struggles to live with the wounds of displacement, of being the wrong child, of bringing joy to those who love her words.


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Red Dust Road

By Jackie Kay

Red Dust Road

Why this book?

Jackie and her brother were adopted by a loving working-class family in Glasgow. They were communists and thoughtful about the adoption process. Jackie becomes a beloved poet and a wonderful public performer. She was recently made the Poet Laureate of Scotland – The Scots Makar. In this book, she traces her childhood and her quest to meet her father in Lagos and to discover her biological parentage and story. It’s a story of belonging and of not belonging. Of finding, fitting, and not fitting. It moves and uplifts us.


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Brit(ish): On Race, Identity and Belonging

By Afua Hirsch

Brit(ish): On Race, Identity and Belonging

Why this book?

Afua’s father is from a Jewish refugee family, her mother is Ghanian. She grows up in an affluent middle-class suburb of London. As she explores her Black and Ghanian identity she looks at what it means to be British; the political heritage, race, and identity from the inside of a loving mix raced family. It is an important commentary on her experience of being in more than one place at the same time.


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Random Book Lists

The best books about the First World WarAdam Zamoyski Author Of Warsaw 1920: Lenin’s Failed Conquest of EuropeAdam Zamoyski

The best books on science, mathematics, and philosophyMario Livio Author Of Galileo: And the Science DeniersMario Livio

The best books on secret agents and espionage in WW2Shrabani Basu Author Of Spy Princess: The Life of Noor Inayat KhanShrabani Basu

The greatest epicsNicholas Jubber Author Of Epic Continent: Adventures in the Great Stories of EuropeNicholas Jubber

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Susie Orbach at the Wellcome Collection

Susie Orbach at the Wellcome Collection

Psychotherapist Susie Orbach and broadcaster Jeff Brazier discuss the power and limitations of resolve in managing grief and mental health. 

to listen to the podcast, visit: https://wellcomecollection.org/articles/YT-D8hAAACUAOlM5

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Wimbledon Guild interview with Brett Kahr

We talk to Professor Kahr about his new book and his keynote presentation at Wimbledon Guild Counselling Training’s 2022 Conference: Reflections on the Pandemic, Covid-19 and Trauma

https://www.wimbledonguild.co.uk/article/116/an-interview-with-professor-kahr

Professor Brett Kahr has worked in the mental health profession for more than 40 years. He is Senior Fellow at the Tavistock Institute of Medical Psychology in London and Visiting Professor of Psychoanalysis and Mental Health at Regent’s University London.

After serving for many years as Trustee of Freud Museum London and of Freud Museum Publications, he has now become the museum’s Honorary Director of Research.

We caught up with Professor Kahr to talk about his new book Freud’s Pandemics: Surviving Global War, Spanish Flu, and the Nazis (Karnac Books, 2021), inspired by the Covid-19 pandemic and to discuss his keynote presentation at our online 2022 Conference: Reflections on the Pandemic, Covid-19 and Trauma, Saturday 12th March 2022. 

We are delighted that you will be presenting your new paper, “Unmuzzling Experts While Curing ‘Covidiots’:  How Psychotherapists Can Prevent the Next Pandemic”, at our online conference next year. Could you tell us something more about the concept of “unmuzzling health professionals”?

Throughout this heart-wrenching coronavirus pandemic, we have received an overwhelming amount of data from politicians and public health officials about how to manage this dreadful global health crisis. However, in spite of the fact that broadcasters have reported a great deal about the decline in mental health, and in spite of the fact that members of the psychotherapeutic profession have never worked so hard, our insights about the unconscious roots of self-destructiveness and other-destructiveness have not become at all central to the narrative surrounding Covid-19. We know that many people contracted the virus quite unexpectedly, but many others have continued to spread this awful infection as clinical acts of aggression. 

I believe that the psychotherapeutic and counselling professions have a great deal of insight to contribute towards a better understanding of the hidden unconscious and behavioural factors underlying what we might conceptualise as “unconscious viral transmission”.

 
During the pandemic, you have been delivering online lectures for Wimbledon Guild, Confer, The Freud Museum London, and the Viktor Wynd Museum, to name just a few organisations. What has it been like for you delivering your work online over Zoom?

I presented my very first public lecture back in 1979, in front of a live audience, so I must confess that switching to Zoom in 2020, more than 40 years later, proved rather a challenge at first, never having used a laptop before! 

Fortunately, the wonderful technologically savvy team at Freud Museum London offered me a veritable masterclass in Zoom and I presented a fund-raising talk to help the museum, entitled “How Freud Would Have Handled the Coronavirus: Lessons from a Beacon of Survival”, which became the basis of my most recent book. 

Naively, I presumed that the attendees would consist predominantly of the London “regulars”, but, to my great surprise and delight, we attracted colleagues from India, Iran, Pakistan and all over the world. And no one had to hop on an aeroplane! I have now become quite used to this new form of communication and it has permitted us all to meet some very intelligent individuals overseas with whom we would have had little or no contact in pre-pandemic times.

 
Please tell us about your new book, Freud’s Pandemics:  Surviving Global War, Spanish Flu, and the Nazis, which has just been published.

Over the last year, we have heard a great deal about everyone’s “lockdown projects”. Some people have finally learned how to speak Italian fluently or have dusted off their old violin. I devoted much of my time to the writing of a new book on Freud’s Pandemics: Surviving Global War, Spanish Flu, and the Nazis, to help inaugurate the new “Freud Museum London Series” in association with the re-launched Karnac Books. 

It will not be widely known that during his long lifetime Sigmund Freud endured not one pandemic but, rather six, of many varieties, including the so-called “Spanish Flu”, which claimed the life of his beloved daughter Sophie Freud Halberstadt in 1920. 

Freud also had to endure decades of anti-Semitic abuse and professional shaming, as well as 16 years of cancer treatment, not to mention the invasion by the Nazis. Any other person who experienced such trauma might have passed by their own hand, but Freud always maintained great emotional sturdiness. 

In this book, based on oral historical and archival research, as well as on a close reading of Freud’s untranslated letters, I have crafted a narrative of his six pandemics. I have also explored how he might have dealt with Covid-19 and, also, what lessons we may continue to learn from this iconic genius.

 
What are you most looking forward to about Wimbledon Guild Counselling Training’s 2022 online conference?

I believe that the 2022 conference will be my sixth lecture for Wimbledon Guild over the last 20 years. I have always had a wonderful time speaking to colleagues at this esteemed organisation. No two institutions attract the same type of audience, but those at Wimbledon Guild always respond with tremendous compassion and wisdom, and I hope that we can all learn a great deal from one another. The Covid-19 pandemic has devastated much of world thought due to massive traumatisation; therefore, no one can claim true expertise about the psychological impact of this awful illness or about the best ways in which to promote psychological prevention, but I do hope and trust that we can all pool our well-analysed minds at this conference and begin to craft a plan about how psychotherapists and counsellors can share our skills and insights even more fully in years to come.

Wimbledon Guild Counselling Training’s 2022 online conference: Reflections on the Pandemic, Covid-19 and Trauma is on Saturday 12th March 2022. View the programme and book tickets.