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Essman, E. (2005). Interdisciplinary Education Committee Report. Fort Da, 11(2):88-88.
    

(2005). Fort Da, 11(2):88-88

Interdisciplinary Education Committee Report

Eric Essman, M.A.

The two main tasks for the IEC in 2005 were to complete the reconstitution of the committee begun in Spring 2004 and present the latest in the continuing series of interdisciplinary conferences, Out of the Tower, Off of the Couch. I am happy to report a successful outcome on both fronts, my only reservation being that the Spring 2005 conference, “In/Human Evil,” was more of a critical success than a well-attended one. Nonetheless, the program, moderated by Janet Thormann Mackintosh, brought together a diverse group of panelists — UC-Berkeley Professor of Rhetoric Carol Clover, ethicist Carol Bayley of Catholic Healthcare West, and psychoanalysts Peter Goldberg of the San Francisco Psychoanalytic Institute & Society, and Mark Stafford of the Après-Coup Psychoanalytic Association — for a lively and richly informed conversation that well cohered with the topics of NCSPP's ISGs on the death drive and trauma. The afternoon program featured a screening of Roman Polanski's Chinatown, introduced by narrative-cinema specialist Carol Clover, and concluded with audience discussion.

With the return of former member Celeste Schneider and the recent additions of Sharon Bass and Kristen Carey, the fully reconstituted committee, which also includes Janet Thormann Mackintosh, Martine Aniel, and Simone Perez, is now planning its 2006 program. Focusing on Middle Eastern culture, gender, and shame, and titled “The Veil and the Wall,” this presentation will feature a talk by Joan Copjec, Professor of English, Comparative Literature and Media Study at SUNY-Buffalo. Professor Copjec is widely known for her brilliant application of psychoanalytic theory to gender, society, cinema, and the arts.

Finally, I'd like to thank former committee member Nina Schnall for her ideas and effort earlier this year, Jeanne Wolff Bernstein for her continuing good counsel, and Francisco González and Scott Lines for their support during my novice years as IEC Chair, as well as their generous contribution to the “Evil” program — in word, deed, and “treasure.”

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