In psychoanalysis we create conditions for change. Successful treatment leads to many changes - in defenses, representations of self and other, and much more. Given the recent investigation of plasticity in neuroscience, what can we say today about the mechanisms of change in psychoanalysis? And how might this advance our clinical work?
On the other hand, optimism about plasticity runs the risk of underplaying what analysts also know: personal mental characteristics are actually remarkably durable and tenacious. What can we say today about these counter-mechanisms to change: mental fixity and rigidity?
Our 2015 congress theme Plasticity and Repetition [and other topics] will create space for consideration of this fundamental duality: the potential for change and the limits of change.
More info here: The 16th International Neuropsychoanalysis Congress