There are three vehicles for learning through OSPS:  Seminars, a course titled Foundations in Psychoanalytic Thought, and Study Groups.  In the left hand column below you will find a listing of our monthly seminars.  Speakers come from all over the country as well as locally to discuss a myriad of analytic ideas.  We offer CEUs for these events and they vary in length from 2 to 5 hours. 

Our course in Foundations in Psychoanalytic Thought is an intensive survey course covering Freud, Object Relations, and relational theories.  It starts in late August or early September and ends in May and meets on Friday afternoons from 1-4.  This is a very popular course and we encourage you to get more details in the right hand column. 

Study Groups are a fun way to learn about a specific topic.  Typically study groups are short term and cover a topic the faculty is interested in but we also have a few study groups that are longer term and cover a subject in great depth.  Occassionally we will start a study group to correspond with a speaker's presentation at one of our seminars.  If you are interested in a particular subject and would like OSPS to start a study group on that topic, please contact Sharon Neuwald at

We hope you will find a spot in one or more of these areas of OSPS that feels like a professional home. 

Neil Altman, Ph.D.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

8:30am to 9:00am Registration

9:00am to 12:00pm Presentation

The Ethics of Access: Psychoanalysis in Community-Based Clinical Settings

Following the lead of Sigmund Freud, every psychoanalytic society in Europe established a free/low cost psychoanalytic clinic in the 1920's. By the 1960's, particularly in the United States, psychoanalysis had become a high cost medical sub-specialty, out of reach for the vast majority of people. The value system enshrined in "criteria of analyzability" favored people with economic privilege and associated cultural values.

In this talk, I will suggest that contemporary developments in psychoanalytic theory and practice offer an opportunity to open up psychoanalysis to people with a wider range of cultural and socio-economic backgrounds. Responsiveness to human suffering constitutes the ethical foundation of psychoanalysis; exclusivity that closes our doors to people on cultural and socio-economic grounds is inconsistent with these ethical commitments, as Freud recognized. I will suggest that a more inclusive version of psychoanalysis is consistent both with our highest and most rigorous psychoanalytic and ethical principles, and necessary to counter the marginal social position in which psychoanalysis currently finds itself as a field. I will describe how psychoanalysis can be deployed, indeed must be deployed, in public sector and private sector clinical work, and the particular transference/countertransference challenges that may arise in cross-cultural and cross-social class psychoanalytic psychotherapy.

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Sharon Neuwald, Dr. PH.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

8:30am to 9:00am Registration

9:00am to 10:30am Presentation

My Personal Participation in a Grey Zone, Understanding Massive Psychic Trauma, Moral Ambiguity and Survival: Film’s Power to Inform and Contain

What is it like to understand and relate to individuals who have experienced massive psychic trauma, a form which requires participation in ignoble acts to survive? What are the effects on their children in their engagement with parents, siblings and the larger environment? Is there a remedy to the guilt and shame that come with this form of survival? In this paper, Dr. Neuwald tackles these questions theoretically but goes further to personally imagine these circumstances. She uses a film, The Grey Zone, based on an essay by Primo Levi in his book “Drowned and Saved” to probe into these questions.

Using this backdrop, Dr. Neuwald incorporates research by various theorists and philosophers including Georgio Agamben, Joerg Bose, Ghislaine Boulanger, Anna Freud, Heinz Kohut, Emily Kuriloff, Henry Krystal, Robert Lifton, Nancy McWilliams, Harvey Peskin and others to vividly describe this form of trauma. She identifies the losses faced by individuals in this situation and coping strategies they deploy in the face of unbelievable horror.

Dr. Neuwald then entertains this condition in her mind through the lens of her own immigrant family to discover and experience its impact. She confronts and thereby understands the emotional power contained in the intergenerational transmission of trauma. The second half of the paper suggests reparative actions again drawing on theory, the film, selective interviews as well as Dr. Neuwald’s own emotional engagement.

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