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Tip: To review an author’s works published in PEP-Web…

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The Author Section is a useful way to review an author’s works published in PEP-Web. It is ordered alphabetically by the Author’s surname. After clicking the matching letter, search for the author’s full name.

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Welles, J.K. (1998). Rituals: Cinematic and Analytic. Psychoanal. Inq., 18(2):207-221.

(1998). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 18(2):207-221

Rituals: Cinematic and Analytic

Judith K. Welles, Ph.D.

Im delighted by this opportunity to interact with the thinking and commentary of esteemed colleagues. Collectively, we represent film history and criticism, anthropology, English literature, and psychoanalysis. This occasion may be likened to a gathering of provisionally friendly, neighboring tribes, coming together to engage in a ceremony of mutual recognition, intended to establish on-going contact between groups who wish to (or must) have further dealings. Such a ceremony is fraught with immediate peril and potential bounty. Each tribe has its own rituals and rules for what constitutes a ceremony. Each tribe proceeds with its own forms of narrative, based on assumptions, manifest and arcane, and variously connected to deities great and small. We are mindful of honors and alert to insults; we recognize that we may improve relations or set them back. If we hope to sponsor continuing beneficial relations, we must attend to the embedded and conflicting assumptions which contextualize this occasion for each of us. If we do this well, we may create a threshold, a

Dr. Welles is a Supervising and Training Analyst and Director of Training at the Los Angeles Institute and Society for Psychoanalytic Studies.

2 I have borrowed the term from psychophysics, where the concept of the limen, or threshold, denotes that magnitude of difference which is necessary to the perception of a difference.

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