Conference. Narratives of the Therapeutic Encounter: Psychoanalysis, Talking Therapies and Creative Practice.
Edinburgh University, 7-8 December

The aim of the conference is to explore the ways in which talking therapies have been depicted in 20th century and contemporary creative outputs in French, and other languages (in life-writings, fiction, film, TV series, art installations). What can these narratives tell us about the therapeutic endeavour which finds its roots in Freud in the late-19th century, and has seen a flourishing of interventions and treatment modes over the last century, and which continues to provoke interest and debate into the 21st century? What do different depictions tell us about the particular culture and history in which they are written, and the controversies and debates they have engendered? Might such artistic endeavours enable us to trace the history of mental health treatment, via depictions of psychological, psychoanalytical and psychiatric practices? Furthermore, following on from Lacan’s view (via Duras), do we find in literature and the arts the foundations of the theories yet to be expressed?