(2007). Canadian Journal of Psychoanalysis, 15(2):314-315
Who should become a Psychoanalyst? Canadian Psychoanalytic Society 50th Anniversary Congress Panel
“The Influence of on Psychoanalytic Ideas” was the theme of the 50th Anniversary Meeting of the Canadian Psychoanalytic and, in keeping with this theme, the Canadian Institute of organized a symposium around the question “Who should become a psychoanalyst?” The intention behind the formulation of this question was to invite—and if necessary to provoke—reflection on the root problems of as a profession. The contributions from the panellists highlighted the clash of cultures within our . All participants, including those who discussed the issue from the floor, spontaneously went to the “root” in their approach to the panel topic. Josette Garon specifically named “radicality” as her theme, emphasizing its necessary violence.
In keeping with the spirit of the occasion, which was to raise questions rather than to bury them in afterthought, we asked all the panellists to submit the original texts upon which they based their presentations, and we have preserved the informal, spontaneous flavour they offered. The original order of the presentations has not been preserved, however, and one of the panellists, Arthur Leonoff, has declined permission to reprint the text of his presentation.
In her presentation, Angela Sheppard referred to the inherent violence of the psychoanalytic act. She settledfor a creative perspective that took Marion Milner's ideas as a point of departure. While acknowledging Aulagnier's violence of , Dr. Sheppard pleaded for courage and humbleness in our work, to replace the space of disillusionment and with a nascent that cathects positively the analytic act.
Elie Debbane argued for the inevitable dispersion and confusion that constitute the unknowable . The analyst's
comes into play in selection and ; the analyst's intersects with of the candidate and group dynamics of institutions. Meltzer's ideas became a pivot in Dr. Debbane's discussion; he noted the -process nature of and psychoanalytic , with all its inherent, but necessary, conflicts and imperfections.
Charles Levin examined the question from a perspective of . He argued that a good analyst is one who experiences “good-enough” ongoing psychoanalytic —a lifelong endeavour. The quality of should be the of societies that benefit from well-trained members. Societies delegate their to analysts; it is in the qualities of the analyst that the future well- of the institution resides. For Charles Levin the question becomes “Who should become a analyst?” The underlying issue, from a clinical point of view, is one of generational : good analysts make up healthy societies, which will regenerate themselves by delegating their to good-enough analysts.
Josette Garon centred her thoughts on the intergenerational that takes place in institutions and the need of analysts to emancipate themselves from analytic and institutional ties. She argued for the analyst's within the context of , loss, and embracing the unknowable. Josette Garon further argued for the subversion and radicality of the analytic act as a means of getting back to the roots and foundation of . In recent times, the boundaries of became blurred with other disciplines. A fundamental subversion and radicality should enter the selection process and keep devoid of extra-analytic influences that suppress the very process we ought to nurture.
The diverse opinions, eloquently elaborated in the following papers, may serve as an introduction to a process of dialogue within and between Institutions. It is the differences, and not the of difference, that will help our Institutions mature and evolve.