A Look at Phantasy in the World of Virtual Reality

During these stark months of pandemic and quarantine, we all have turned to screens and the pervasive digital world for work, leisure, and sanity. This is true for adults and also for children and adolescents who navigate school, play, and connections through a digital lens. Although necessary in this period of crisis and isolation, the prevalence of screens and their overuse has been an ever-increasing concern.

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Registration is a two-part process, and both parts must be completed to register. First, complete the registration form below. Next, click “Add Registration to Cart and Check Out”. (Even if the registration is free, you must complete the “Check Out” process.) You will receive an email confirmation of your registration. If you do not receive an email confirmation immediately after the “Check Out” process, your registration is not confirmed. Please contact Drew Brydon-Cardoso (dbrydon@bpsi.org) for assistance.

The Zoom link will be sent to the email address you provide on the Check Out screen. After Check Out, you will receive a confirmation email. You will receive a reminder with the Zoom link one hour prior to the program.

If you register but cannot attend, please email Drew Brydon-Cardoso to release your reservation. Thank you.

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Saturday, November 21, 2020

10:00 AM EST Online Lecture & Discussion
Online registration is required for this program. All registrants will receive a Zoom Meeting Link.
To receive Continuing Education, registration must be completed by Friday, November 20, 2020 at 10:00 AM EST.


The 2020 Beata Rank Lecture


During these stark months of pandemic and quarantine, we all have turned to screens and the pervasive digital world for work, leisure, and sanity. This is true for adults and also for children and adolescents who navigate school, play, and connections through a digital lens. Although necessary in this period of crisis and isolation, the prevalence of screens and their overuse has been an ever-increasing concern, where “screen time” on the internet has in many cases led to “screen addiction” with an immersion in virtual worlds that can become increasingly violent and pornographic.
Psychoanalysts may not always be aware of their patients’ immersion in cyberspace with the addictions this can entail. Active therapeutic interest in this immersion may offer access into a world of thoughts and fantasies that can increase the depth and efficacy of treatment. Dr. Susan Donner makes a vital contribution to understanding this virtual world with its addictions. How can we understand and explore the patient’s interface with cyberspace? What are the psychodynamic forces at play that render some children and adults vulnerable to developing such addictive immersions? Dr. Donner analyzes the siren call drawing some children, adolescents, and adults into the grip of a virtual reality from which they are seemingly unable to escape. She elucidates the dynamics of such addictions through the lens of two psychoanalytic concepts: transitional objects and the notion of a claustrum. 


Susan L. Donner, MD  (Presenter)
Training and Child, Adolescent and Adult Supervising Analyst, New Center for Psychoanalysis (Los Angeles), Chair, Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Training Program; Director, NCP Child 0-21 Clinic; Associate Clinical Professor in Psychiatry and Child Psychiatry, UCLA Geffen School of Medicine.
Richard Frankel, PhD  (Discussant)
Faculty member and supervisor, The Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis; Teaching associate and supervisor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School; Private practice, Cambridge, MA; Author of The Adolescent Psyche: Jungian and Winnicottian Perspectives as well as papers on Winnicott, Bion, dreams, and the interface of psychoanalysis and technology; his latest book (with Victor J. Krebs), Human Virtuality and Digital Life: Philosophical and Psychoanalytic Investigations will be published by Routledge in 2021. 
Lawrence J. Brown, PhD (Moderator) 
Supervising Child Analyst, and immediate past Co-Chair, Child Analysis Committee, Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute; President, Boston Group for Psychoanalytic Studies.


This program is made possible by the generous support of BPSI members and friends. Your gift to BPSI supports
psychoanalytic and psychotherapy education and ensures the future of our field. To make a gift, please visit www.bpsi.org.


This program will be of interest to mental health clinicians at all levels of training. 

Learning Objectives
At the conclusion of this program, participants will be able to:

  1. Identify the symptoms of screen addictions.
  2. Explain the difference between the common overuse of screen time and addictive trends.
  3. Define the concept of transitional phenomena concerning a patient’s interface with cyberspace.
  4. Explain the notion of a claustrum in which patients become entrapped in their addiction.


10:00 am – 10:10 Introductions; 10:10 – 11:00 Presentation; 11:00 am - 11:20 Discussant; 11:20 – 12:00 pm Discussion and Q and A.

Scholarships are available for all BPSI programs.
FEE: $65 Early Bird (use code at checkout: EB2020BR); $75 Regular (as of 11/06/2020)
The fee is waived for Early Career Clinicians, Residents, and Students, and BPSI Members and Partners.

About the Beata Rank Lecture
The Beata Rank Lecture celebrates the legacy of this prominent child analyst. A psychoanalyst member of BPSI, her influence reached far into the Boston community as diverse mental health professionals—from pediatricians to psychiatrists to social scientists—sought her out as a consultant. With Dr. Marian C. Putnam, Rank co-founded and co-directed the James Jackson Putnam Children’s Center, a pioneering day-treatment facility for preschool children and their parents. It simultaneously offered daycare and/or psychological evaluation and treatment for children with emotional and cognitive developmental problems, and their parents. Research was an integral part of the program and the staff published numerous papers, including Rank’s papers on atypical development.
Continuing Education 
This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of American Psychoanalytic Association and the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute. The American Psychoanalytic Association is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The American Psychoanalytic Association designates this Live Activity for a maximum of 2 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION FOR ALL LEARNERS: None of the planners and presenters of this CME program have any relevant financial relationships to disclose. 
Psychologists: The Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute maintains responsibility for this program and its content. This program fulfills the requirements for 2 hours of CE. 
Please note: Per APA requirements, psychologists must attend 100% of a course in order to be eligible for continuing education credit.
Social Workers: Application for social work continuing education credits has been submitted. Please contact us at office@bpsi.org or 617-266-0953 for the status of social work CE accreditation.
Please note: Per NASW requirements, social workers must attend 80% of a course in order to be eligible for continuing education credit.
The Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6913. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified.  The Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs. This program offers 2 NBCC Clock Hours.


Event Cancellation Policies & Procedures
Any program participant requesting their individual program registration be canceled must submit their request in writing via email to Drew Brydon-Cardoso at dbrydon@bpsi.org. For fee-based events, a request for cancellation (and refund using the original form of payment) must be received no later than 48 hours in advance of the event. Requests received later than 48 hours prior to the event will not be processed or accepted. All approved refunds are subject to a $10.00 administrative fee. If BPSI cancels an event, all registrants will receive a full refund of fees paid (no administration charge) no later than two business days following the scheduled date of the event, using the original form of payment.

Grievance Policy
Please address any questions or concerns about your experience at this or any program or event you have attended at the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute to the Program Chair, via the Senior Administrator/Continuing Education Administrator, BPSI, 141 Herrick Road, Newton Centre, MA 02459; office@bpsi.org; 617.266.0953.

The Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute, Inc., 141 Herrick Road, Newton Centre, MA 02459, does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, sex, age, sexual orientation, national origin or handicap in the admissions, administration of its educational programs, scholarship programs or employment.





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