ACTIVITIES OF SECTION VIII
The listserv connects the geographically dispersed members of Section VIII, practitioners with many diverse orientations and areas of expertise, and facilitates communication around issues related to couples and families. Our listserv is in digest form, so all e-mails from a given day arrive in a single e-mail. In addition to discussing articles and clinical questions (link) on our listserv, members share information about research and clinical interests, disseminate educational materials, respond to referral inquiries, publicize upcoming events, report on members’ activities, and discuss social actions relating to couples and families.
Members of the Section have participated in two types of active on-line discussions through our listserv. There have been monthly postings of a clinical question or problem and discussion of the question/problem is open only to the membership of the Section. In addition, members are invited to respond to and discuss target papers which have been submitted by members for responses. Two recent papers concerned with differing perspectives on couple and family therapy and psychoanalysis were The Gift of an Apple or the Twist of an Arm: Negotiation in Couples and Couple Therapy by Barbara Pizer, Ph.D. and Stuart Pizer, Ph.D.; and Toward a More Optimal SelfObject Milieu: Family Psychotherapy from the Perspective of Self-Psychology by Carla Leone, Ph.D., with a discussion by Anna Ornstein, M.D. Joining in these discussions, open only to members of Section VIII, enables participation in a conversation with other members located all over the country about issues of interest in the broad area of couple and family therapy and psychoanalysis.
Our two Newsletters per year provide a vehicle to exchange ideas central to our work, report on Section and member activities, and review books and movies. Members of Section VIII receive the newsletters as part of membership and have access to archived copies of the newsletter on this website.
Section VIII publishes a directory of our members’ addresses, interests, and specialties. An abbreviated version, organized by geographic location, will be available online for people seeking to make referrals or organize local networks.
The Public Policy Committee
The Public Policy Committee is charged to promote the application of psychoanalytic and family systemic thinking to current couple/family issues which become salient politically or culturally, and to serve as an advisory body to the membership and the public in that regard. The Committee sponsors the Project in Transgenerational Trauma with Section IX, which offers an open conversation or panel presentation at each Division 39 Spring meeting.
In this time of domestic and international turmoil, a psychoanalytic/systemic perspective on family dynamics can be crucial, for example on domestic policy issues such as abortion or violence, or in understanding irrational hatred and stereotyping. The Committee encourages new volunteers and new proposals for initiatives. Please contact Mary-Joan Gerson, Chair, at email@example.com with questions or suggestions.