2013 Conference

The Canadian Network for Psychoanalysis and Culture (CNPC) is a network of psychoanalytic scholars in Canada that meets semi-annually. The CNPC’s inaugural conference themed The Freudian Legacy Today will be held at the University of Toronto from September 20-22, 2013.

The CNPC’s semiannual conference draws Canadian and international academics in the humanities and social sciences whose research brings psychoanalysis to the study of culture.

One of the goals of the network is to increase collaboration across constituencies, with a focus on the inclusion of Canadian academics, graduate and undergraduate students, as well as Canadian psychoanalytic practitioners, training analysts, and analytic candidates whose work considers psychoanalytic interpretations of cultural, artistic, pedagogical, philosophical, and political discourses.

Through shared scholarly discussions, the CNPC provides a venue whereby psychoanalytic research can made accessible to a larger community. The CNPC also supports the establishment of reciprocal relationships between academics based in institutions across the country.

The CNPC will be forming an advisory board that will direct Network meetings in subsequent years. The advisory board will join Canadian and international members to increase the visibility of our collective work among academic and clinical psychoanalytic communities across the world, including those whose work takes place in languages other than English and French.

The founding members of the Network, and the convenors of the inaugural conference are Dina Georgis, University of Toronto, Sara Matthews, Wilfrid Laurier University, and James Penney, Trent University.

Founding Members

Dina Georgis, dina.georgis@utoronto.ca, University of Toronto
Dina Georgis’ work draws on theories of loss, affect and mourning to think through how narrative and art articulate the emotional residues of the past and provide the conditions for imagining better futures. Her book, The Better Story: Queer Affects from The Middle East (SUNY, 2013), is a conversation among postcolonial studies, queer theory and psychoanalysis. With a focus on the Middle East, it considers the dynamics of political conflict, and the histories and subjectivities made from them. Her present research examines the works of a group of war generation Lebanese artists who have been prolifically archiving the war. In common to these artists is a concern with the limits and dilemmas of representing the civil war.

Sara Matthews, smatthews@wlu.ca, Wilfrid Laurier University
Sara’s work is interdisciplinary and explores the cultural studies of conflict and social reparation. She is interested in how individuals and communities learn from traumatic historical events and imagine forms of social justice and reconciliation. Her past research explored pedagogical strategies at Apartheid Museums in South Africa, specifically the difficulties of witnessing testimonial accounts of racialized violence. Her current research considers how contemporary Canadian War Artists are responding to Canada’s mission in Afghanistan. In addition to her academic work, Sara curates aesthetic projects that archive visual encounters with legacies of war and social trauma.

James Penney, jamespenney@trentu.ca, Trent University
James Penney’s research pivots around the implications of Lacanian psychoanalysis for the study of literature, cinema, and art, as well as for politics. He is the author of The World of Perversion: Psychoanalysis and the Impossible Absolute of Desire (SUNY Press, 2006), The Structures of Love: Art and Politics beyond the Transference (SUNY Press, 2012), and After Queer Theory: The Limits of Sexual Politics (Pluto Press, 2014). His work has appeared in Paragraph, Angelaki, Radical Philosophy, Diacritics, Umbra, Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society, Communication Theory and New Formations, as well as in the anthologies The Psychoanalysis of Race (Columbia University Press, 1996), Perversion and the Social Relation (Duke University Press, 2003), and Comparatively Queer (Palgrave, 2011). He teaches in the Cultural Studies Department and the Modern Languages and Literatures Department at Trent. He is currently working on a book about the poetic acts of Jean Genet.