The New York State Society for Clinical Social Work Committee for Creativity & Transformation in Clinical Practice THE DARK SIDE OF CREATIVITY – a lecture-workshop by the author of The Compulsion to Create: Women Writers and Their Demon Lovers; The Creative Mystique: From red Shoes Frenzy to Love and Creativity; and Mourning, Spirituality and Psychic Change: A New Object Relations View of Psychoanalysis, Susan Kavaler-Adler, PhD, ABPP, NPsyA, D.Litt, Founder and Executive Director of the Object Relations Institute for Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis When: Sunday, June 3rd, 2012; 12-4pm Where: 248 West 71st Street (between Broadway and West End Avenue), NYC, 10023 Please call/ email Sandra Indig, LCSW-R, LP, ATRCB, Committee Chair, to reserve a seat – at 212-330-6787 or firstname.lastname@example.org This presentation will focus on how psychopathology, when related to developmental arrest and character disorder, can trump the healthy and developmentally enhancing aspects of the creative process. It will focus on brilliant and talented tragic women who tried to live in the creative process when their lives in the world broke down due to early developmental arrest. It will illustrate how those who fail in external relationships, but who possess brilliant artistic and literary abilities, can become captives of internal world enactments, that repeat critical preoedipal trauma in their creative work, perpetually, unless critical psychological treatment (with an object relations focus) intercedes. Such women will also be contrasted with brilliant women artists and writers who were not psychologically devastated by preoedipal trauma, and who advance to the oedipal stage in early development, allowing them to work out a lot of conflicts related to oedipal loss and disappointment within their creative work. The latter women will be seen to be capable of a progressive developmental mourning process in their creative work that moves them forward in life towards fully mutual interpersonal relationships. Those, on the other hand, who are stymied by developmental arrest, will be seen to become involved in addictive and demonic relationships, described in object relations terms as the “demon lover complex,” and the consequence (without effective treatment) is either withdrawal from the world (the schizoid dimension), suicide, psychosis, or disease, with devastations in their lives overcoming healthy self-expression in the creative process. In fact those with developmental arrest, who try to live in the creative process, prove to be incapable of mourning within their creative work, resulting in tragic deterioration and unresolved loss in their life and creative work.
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