Harvey (2020) illuminates the experience of the uncanny gaze in the non-disabled person who encounters a child with a physical difference. ”The onlooker is left feeling uncertain as to what category this person falls into, eliciting feelings of both the familiar and unfamiliar, the frightening and the attractive.” As the mother of a child with Moebius Syndrome, a congenital form of facial paralysis, whose face looked visibly different from birth, Harvey’s observation that “the mother’s sense of self, and her own feelings of unfamiliarity within herself, never quite settle because her subjectivity is constantly disrupted by others’ responses to her child. . . amplifying her own ambivalence,” makes psychological sense of Dr. Hershberg’s own unique maternal experience.
Dr. Hershberg will describe her maternal self experience in greater depth with reference to maternal gazes including the loving empathic mother and “the uncanny” ambivalent (m)other, contextualized by Winnicott’s (1971) template of the mother’s face as a mirror for the baby’s image of herself. In addition, Dr. Hershberg will include the impact of other salient gazes–the paternal gaze, the grandmother’s gaze, the medical gaze and the analyst’s gaze. Her daughter’s writings and a few vignettes will provide a window into how a creatively astute child expresses her experiences of alienation, rebellion and reparation.
In addition Dr. Hershberg will examine the way these subjective maternal experiences have contributed to her analytic sensibility and view of difference in her clinical work.
Dr. Ebony Dennis will be the discussant for Dr. Hershberg’s presentation.
At the conclusion of this conference, participants will be able to:
- Identify the emotional impact on the uncanny gaze expressed by a non-disabled mother of a child with a visible difference.
- Describe the concept of ‘abjection’ identified by Kristeva and the concept of ‘the mother’s face as a mirror’ described by Winnicott.
PLEASE NOTE: Recording in any form of this live streaming event is NOT permitted.
This conference is appropriate for mental health professionals at all levels of experience and offers 3 CEs.
About our presenter:
Sandra Hershberg, MD is a psychoanalyst and adult and child psychiatrist. She has published and presented numerous papers on a wide variety of subjects including biography and psychoanalysis, pregnancy and creativity, therapeutic action, ethics, and the mother/daughter relationship. Her most recent paper is A Female Gaze in/on the Female Body in Art and Psychoanalysis: Paula Modersohn-Becker, a German expressionist artist. Dr. Hershberg is the Co-Editor and a contributor to the book Psychoanalytic Theory, Research, and Clinical Practice: Reading Joseph D. Lichtenberg published by Routledge in 2016. Two volumes of Psychoanalytic Inquiry currently in press that she is editing or co-editing include Writing a New Playbook: Confronting Theoretical and Clinical Challenges of the Twin Pandemics of Covid-19 and Systemic Racism and the other entitled Home.
Bromberg, C. & Aron, L. (2019). Disguised autobiography as clinical case history. Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 29:695-710.
Harvey, C. (2020). The uncanny effect of disability: Uncomfortable maternal Love for a disabled child. Contemporary Psychoanalysis, 56(1): 1-28.
Harvey, C & Long, C (2020). “Sharing the unshareable”: Subjectivity and the return of the abject in mothers of physically disabled infants. Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 25:460-479.
There will be a 15 minute break halfway through the presentation as well as a Question and Answer portion during each segment.
This conference is intended for mental health professionals at all levels of experience and offers 3.0 CEs.
CE Credit is granted to participants with documented attendance at individual workshops. Credit will not be granted to registrants who are more than 15 minutes late or depart more than 15 minutes early from a session. Please sign in to the Zoom link at least 10 minutes before the scheduled start time to allow time to adjust your settings.
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Continuing education credit: 3 CE credits available for full attendance. The Institute of Contemporary Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis (ICP+P) is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. ICP+P maintains responsibility for this program and its content. ICP+P is approved by the Maryland Board of Social Work Examiners to offer Category I continuing education credit. As our CE program receives oversight from a licensed social worker, the CE credits we award are highly likely to be recognized by licensing boards in Virginia and the District of Columbia. These continuing education credits meet the ANCC standards for nurses. Marriage and family therapists licensed in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia may submit these CE credits to their licensing boards. (Marriage and family therapists in other jurisdictions and licensed counselors should inquire with their local Boards regarding continuing education credit.) Attendees from the above professional groups will earn 3.0 CE credits for attending the CE activity. Full attendance is required to receive the designated CE credit. ICP+P is accredited by MedChi, the Maryland State Medical Society to provide continuing medical education for physicians. ICP+P designates this educational activity for a maximum of 3.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
* Sandra Hershberg, MD and the planners have informed us that they do not have a conflict of interest and have disclosed that they have no relevant financial relationship with any commercial interests pertaining to this educational activity. Additionally, the presenters have been instructed to disclose any limitations of data and unlabeled or investigational uses of products during this presentation. This presentation will not contain any references to off-label (non-FDA approved) use of products or devices.
CE Credit is granted to participants with documented attendance at individual workshops. Credit will not be granted to registrants who are more than 15 minutes late or depart more than 15 minutes early from a session.