Against Transantagonism: A Metapsychology for the Flourishing of Trans Children (Zoom Registration)
In this presentation, Dr. Avgi Saketopoulou urges psychoanalysts to let the debate about the validity of trans children take its place in the fossil record of analytic history. Encouraging us to stop squandering our energies sparring with colleagues who see trans existence as cause for alarm, she suggests it is time to move beyond transantagonism to create, instead, the psychoanalytic theories we need and do not yet have to work towards the flourishing of trans and queer children.
Registration is required for this program. All registrants will receive a Zoom link.
In this presentation, Dr. Avgi Saketopoulou urges psychoanalysts to let the debate about the validity of trans children take its place in the fossil record of analytic history. Encouraging us to stop squandering our energies sparring with colleagues who see trans existence as cause for alarm, she suggests it is time to move beyond transantagonism to create, instead, the psychoanalytic theories we need and do not yet have to work towards the flourishing of trans and queer children. Let us refuse, once and for all, the philanthropy of being “inclusive”: trans children, Dr. Saketopoulou emphasizes, deserve no less than a psychoanalysis that wants their transness and which does not treat their genders as undesirable or inauthentic. Such a project, she cautions, will require us to endure the twisting and re-making of our metapsychology’s very foundations. It is only then that we may enjoy a psychoanalysis that is responsible and response-able to queer life, and which will not feel threatened by it or work to straighten or cis-iffy our patients.
Through a series of case vignettes, Dr. Saketopoulou will address what stands in the way of a psychoanalysis that works towards the flourishing of trans and queer children, taking on key concepts in child analysis. She will explain why the notion of core gender identity nests a ticking time bomb into the clinical process and why we need to relinquish our attachment to it; how we may reflect on gender not through the rubric of identity but under the aegis of contingency; why thinking about trauma as constitutive of some queer and some trans experience does not have to necessarily capsize into homotransphobia or conversion; how the demand for coherence and continuity overlooks the workings of important heteroclite psychic processes; and how to think developmentally without collapsing into developmentalism. The implications of this presentation extend far beyond the particularities of trans and queer childhoods, and gesture towards renewed foundations for child psychoanalysis overall.
|Avgi Saketopoulou, PsyD, Presenter is on faculty at the NYU Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis and also teaches at the William Alanson White Institute. Her published work has received the Ralph Roughton award, the Ruth Stein Prize, the annual JAPA Essay Prize, and she is Div. 39’s 2022 recipient of the Scholarship and Research Award. Her interview on relational psychoanalysis is in the permanent collection of the Freud Museum in Vienna and she is co-recipient of the IPA’s First Tiresias Prize. Her monograph, Sexuality Beyond Consent: Risk, Race, Traumatophilia was published earlier this year by NYU Press, and her book, Gender Without Identity, co-authored with Dr. Ann Pellegrini which includes their Tiresias essay, came out in June from The Unconscious in Translation Press.|
Lisa Price, MD, Moderator is a faculty member in the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital and is an Instructor at Harvard Medical School. At BPSI, she is a Faculty Member, Director of BPSI’s Programs in Psychodynamics and Travel Grants, as well as an Advanced Child Analytic Candidate. In her Cambridge private practice, she sees children, adolescents, and adults across the lifespan.
At the conclusion of this program, participants will be able to:
- List two reasons why it is clinically important to be able to consider how trauma may have a share in the constitution of queer and trans life.
- Describe how it is possible to think developmentally about the constitution of trans subjectivities without falling into developmentalism and without capsizing into transphobic thinking or conversion therapies.
- Identify the ethical issues involved in thinking traumatophilically about queer and trans child patients.
- Explain why it is psychoanalytically important to name trans childhoods as such and will be able to demonstrate an understanding of how it is possible to do so without collapsing transness into fixed identity or ontological claims.
10:00 Welcome and Introductions; 10:10 Presentation; 11:10 Discussion with the audience
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.
A recording of this event will not be available.
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