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  • Beyond Rants and Raves: Steps and Missteps in in a Volatile Political Climate

Beyond Rants and Raves: Steps and Missteps in in a Volatile Political Climate

  • Friday, November 02, 2018
  • 6:00 PM - 8:30 PM
  • UC Davis MIND Institute 2825 50th St. Sacramento, Ca 95817


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Sacramento Psychoanalytic Society

In association with the 

San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis



Beyond Rants and Raves; 

Steps and Missteps 

in a Volatile Political Climate

November 2, 2018 6-8pm

UC Davis MIND Institute
2825 50th St.
Sacramento, Ca 95817

Our political beliefs are a reflection of our most closely held values and hard-won life experiences; this is also true of our clients. Our religious or spiritual beliefs and backgrounds, still embraced or rejected, also are an intimate reflection of our values, as they are for our clients. What are the dangers and opportunities unique to the clinical encounter embedded in clinical practice in 2018 American culture that is struggling with splitting and polarization? How do we hold on to our capacity to think and not react when a client, knowingly or unknowingly, attacks or vehemently agrees with our most cherished beliefs? Both disagreement and agreement can distract from the emergent clinical task. When it is possible, how do we identify the clinical process(es) needing to be understood that are concretized in the political or religious content? Are there capacities the clinician can develop that make it more possible to hold on to the capacity to think or to become aware when the capacity to think is interrupted? Countertransference, enactment, rupture and repair are some of the clinical concepts that will be discussed, embedded in clinical examples. Audience participation is encouraged, so the discussion can be clinically useful to those listening.


Susan Flynn, PhD is a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst who has been practicing, teaching, supervising, consulting and writing in Sacramento for the past 18 years. Prior to that she was in private practice in Los Angeles for 22 years. She trained at the Psychoanalytic Center of California in L.A., where the clinical focus was treatment of primitive mental states. She is volunteer clinical faculty at UC Davis, Department of Psychiatry where she received the Outstanding Volunteer Faculty Award in 2015 and 2018. Susan is a training and supervising analyst at Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California, and clinical supervisor of the Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Training Program for the San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis. Susan is a published poet whose writing has been influenced by many, including D.W. Winnicott, Thomas Ogden, and Wilfred Bion. As a poet and psychoanalyst, she attempts to approach the ineffable through language.

Erik Shwarts, MD is a psychiatrist and psychodynamically oriented psychotherapist in Sacramento, CA. He is a recent graduate from the UC Davis Adult Psychiatry Residency program. He is currently completing his second year of the Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Training Program at The San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis. Prior to attending medical school at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY, he worked as a software engineer. His interests include the intersection of technology and mental health and is hoping to continue expanding his understanding of the therapeutic relationship.


SPS Advisory Board:

John Thor Cornelius, MD 

Susan Flynn, PhD

Catherine Cohen, PsyD 

Margaret Bezmalinovic, PsyD

Kristina Antonson, MD, PhD 

Mark Ettensohn, PsyD

Vicky Booth, LCSW 

Jan Phillips, PsyD

Nicole Pardo, MD

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