Just minutes from one of the most beautiful isolated beaches, nestled among old-growth oaks between the mountains and the sea, lies Pacifica Graduate Institute. Founded over 40 years ago in Isla Vista, California, Pacifica's mission is to foster creative learning and research in the fields of psychology, mythology, and the humanities, framed in the traditions of depth psychology by creating an educational environment with a spirit for free and open inquiry. Pacifica is dedicated to cultivating and harvesting the gifts of the human imagination.
Resistance and Radical Edges Conference, June 2017 Introduction to Dr. Donald Kalsched and clinical depth psychology by the Chair of the Clinical Psychology Department, Dr. Oksana Yakushko
On the weekend of June 16-18 of 2017 The Retreat at Pacifica Graduate Institute hosted over one-hundred guests at the landmark conference Response at the Radical Edge: Depth Psychology for the 21st Century. Chair of Pacifica's Clinical Psychology Program, Dr. Oksana Yakushko, welcomed guests on the morning of June 17th and gave some opening remarks. We hope you enjoy the replay of the live presentation. If you would prefer, Dr. Yakushko has kindly offered her written speech which you can access below the video.
A warm morning greeting to all of you. I hope you have enjoyed yesterday’s offerings, opening plenaries, and connections.
I am Dr. Oksana Yakushko, the chair of the Clinical Psychology department which includes both the Ph.D. and Psy.D. programs here at Pacifica. I have the privilege of giving the opening remarks on this day and an introduction to our next distinguished speaker, Dr. Donald Kalshed, one of the top scholars on depth psychological perspectives on trauma.
My introductory comments will focus on offering a frame, a different container and symbol for the practice of psychology today.
Carl Gustav Jung was born in 1875, died in 1961, and lived in Switzerland all his life, although he traveled now and then. He was a psychiatrist, seeing patients and pioneering various techniques in experimental research before focusing on psychoanalysis and then on evolving his own kind of depth psychology. He created innovative methods for working with symptoms, dreams, fantasies, visions, and even works of art on the level of psychological symbolism.
A remarkable thing about Jung’s work is that so little of it is out of date.
Depth Psychology and the contributions of Sigmund Freud and C.G. Jung.
As outlined in Pacifica’s definition, depth psychology is an interdisciplinary body of psychological practices and traditions that study the interactions between conscious and unconscious. Psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined the term in 1910 to describe psychoanalytic approaches to therapy and research.
The question of who founded the field is more complex than the usual answer: Sigmund Freud and C.G. Jung, both interested in exploring what pulses and simmers below our customary awareness. In France, Pierre Janet coined “subconscious” to describe the inner roots of psychological symptoms without apparent biological causes. One of his patients wept a lot without knowing why. She had never mourned the loss of two loved ones. Finding this out alleviated her symptoms.
Depth psychologists don’t job-hunt without taking the psyche into account. What does this mean?
It means that the job I consciously think I belong in might not be the job that fulfills me. Many of us know exactly what kind of work we “should” do according to external standards we’ve internalized, but how many know what would complete us, give a sense of mission, bring joy and refreshment? Not many.
In 2011, Sabina Spielrein became something of a household name due to the debut of a mainstream film called A Dangerous Method, starring well-known actors including Michael Fassbender, Keira Knightley, and Viggo Mortensen. The film purported to tell the story of Sabina Spielrein, a young woman psychiatric patient and acquaintance of the infamous doctors Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud, pioneers of the modern psychoanalytical and depth psychology movements.
A guest post by faculty member Oksana Yakushko, Ph.D.
Who Was John B. Watson and What Did He Contribute to Mainstream Psychology?
In the early 1900s, John B. Watson, relatively unknown research psychologist from Johns Hopkins, delivered the “Behaviorist Manifesto” to an audience at Columbia University. He decried the psychology’s misguided infatuation with “introspection” and consciousness, neither of which could be measured or objectively defined. Psychology, in his view, mired by what he called Freud’s unscientific “voodoism,” has gone in the wrong direction. In contrast, Watson proposed a psychology that is a true “scientific” discipline, seeking to understand and control human behavior in “physico-chemical” terms. Introspection, he argued, has no place in this scientific endeavor..